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Preliminary working drawing for the offices with ruins, 17 October 1801 (1)


The rough nature of this plan and the multitude of notes in Soane's hand regarding technical details such as the placement and dimensions of the cistern, suggests that Soane had decided on the plan and room layout and was working out the exact details which would later provide instructions for the workmen (although this version shows a preliminary stage in this process).

The marginal sketch for a lantern was presumably intended for the plaster cast gallery, where two dome skylights are marked out on the plan. The ruins are also labelled, though not designed.



Digitisation of the Drawings Collection has been made possible through the generosity of the Leon Levy Foundation

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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).