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Purpose

Four preliminary designs (from volume 39, Italian sketchbook) for a dining room on a semi-elliptical plan after the supposed 'triclinium' of Lucullus, together with a design for remodelling the south front, 1779 (2)

Notes

(4a) 86v The half-elliptical plan for Soane's proposed dining room was based on that of the supposed 'triclinium' of Lucullus drawn by Soane in his Italian notebook with sketches, 1778-9 (pp.6-7, volume 164, q.v.).

(4a) 87r The proposed remodelling of the south front of Downhill (ii) was not carried out until 1784, when it was re-faced in dressed ashlar by James McBlain who used pairs of fluted, giant Corinthian pilasters between the windows, a double perron to the door and a pair of segmental bows to the sides. (A.Rowan, North West Ulster, 1979, pp.244-8) It seems as if he may have borrowed some ideas from Soane.

(4b) 87v The reference to 'a [semi] Circular Portico ... in lieu of the Bows' (iv) refers to the east and west windows of the proposed pavilion ends to the south front. Instead of bow windows, a terrace was proposed with access from the room.

For 'Italian Sketches, 1779' (SM volume 39) see online Sketchbook catalogue.

Literature

P. du Prey, John Soane's architectural education 1753-80, 1977, pp.153-7; P. du Prey, 'Je n'oublieray jamais: John Soane and Downhill', Quarterly Bulletin of the Irish Georgian Society, XXI Nos 3 &4, 1978, pp.23-4; P. du Prey, John Soane: the making of an architect, 1982, pp.114-8

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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.

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