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  • image SM 69/7/1r/b

Reference number

SM 69/7/1r/b


[280] Finished drawing with alternative design, New Law Courts, c 1822-23


Plans of the entrance vestibule into the Court of Exchequer from St Margaret's Street, and adjacent offices as far east as the Baron's Retiring Room, showing proposal for removing the north wall and replacing it with a pair of columns and corresponding antae, with section of Ionic columns and antae, not executed


to a scale


dimensions given

Signed and dated

  • c 1821-23
    dated in accordance with known building campaign

Medium and dimensions

Pencil, orange wash, pen pricked for transfer on wove paper (564 x 428, maximum dimensions)


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


Agreeing with Summerson's reading, the plan shown variants of the same plan (see note in file). The proposal would add grandeur to an otherwise understated entrance; the columns so placed as to straddle the depth of the stairs. There is a lightly-sketched (in pencil) segmental opening in the wall behind the columns, with radiating glazing bars. Given its position in conjunction with the stairs, this suggests an internal window rather than a doorway. This aesthetic solution also echoes Soane's work on the Scala Regia and Royal Gallery for the House of Lords. The elevation appears to be in Soane's hand.


Sawyer, 1999: p 539, footnote 1591



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).