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  • image SM 53/2/53

Reference number

SM 53/2/53


[225] First design, Vice Chancellor's Court, 30 October 1822


Half plan of the gallery floor of the Vice Chancelllor's Court, and corresponding section through the main floor of the Vice Chancellor's Court, looking east, with variant treatment for the ceiling height, the fenstration and the underside of the gallery, not as executed


bar scale of 2/5 inch to 1 foot


Plan and Section of a Design for / the Vice-Chancellor's Court. / Truth / Justice / Mercy dimensions given

Signed and dated

  • 30/10/1822
    30 Oct[ober]: 1822

Medium and dimensions

Pencil, wash, with coloured washes of buff, pink and blue, pricked for transfer on wove paper (344 x 520)


Sir John Soane (1753 - 1837), architect
Soane Office, draughtsman


see separate entry for drawing SM 53/2/53v


The drawing is annotated in Soane's hand. There are minor variations between the left and right halves of both the plan and section. The former's right side shows the columns supported on beams, rather than (as on the left side) on shallow pendentives, with a large oculus cut into the spandrel. Plinths have also been sketched in pencil at the intercolumniations. These were to carry personfications of virtues. The section shows variants for the larger central portal; either with or without a shallow segmental pediment echoing the curve of the pendentives above. The smaller portals were originally drawn with acroteria; that on the left side also had a segmental pediment. The fascia of the gallery is ornamented with raceme, above which stands an Ionic colonnade with a plain entablature. A candelarbrum or figure has been lightly sketched on the axis over the main portal. Behind the colonnade are shown variant treatments of windows, the camber of the ceiling and the presence of a large ceiling rose.


Sawyer, 1999: p 533, footnote 1572



Digitisation of the Drawings Collection has been made possible through the generosity of the Leon Levy Foundation. This catalogue of Soane’s designs for the New Law Courts was generously funded by The Worshipful Company of Mercers and The Pilgrim Trust.

If you have any further information about this object, please contact us: drawings@soane.org.uk

Sir John Soane's collection includes some 30,000 architectural, design and topographical drawings which is a very important resource for scholars worldwide. His was the first architect’s collection to attempt to preserve the best in design for the architectural profession in the future, and it did so by assembling as exemplars surviving drawings by great Renaissance masters and by the leading architects in Britain in the 17th and 18th centuries and his near contemporaries such as Sir William Chambers, Robert Adam and George Dance the Younger. These drawings sit side by side with 9,000 drawings in Soane’s own hand or those of the pupils in his office, covering his early work as a student, his time in Italy and the drawings produced in the course of his architectural practice from 1780 until the 1830s.

Browse (via the vertical menu to the left) and search results for Drawings include a mixture of Concise catalogue records – drawn from an outline list of the collection – and fuller records where drawings have been catalogued in more detail (an ongoing process).