Inscribed in ink in a contemporary hand Chapiteau Ecossais and J. A. Inv.t 1761[or 4]
Signed and dated
1761 or 4
Medium and dimensions
136 x 140
James Adam (attributed to)
Various calculations in pen in a contemporary hand.
Although the capital design is dated 1761 or 1764, it is undoubtedly the counterpart to James Adam's British Order (see Adam vol.7/69), and like that one was intended to decorate his Parliament House scheme of 1762/63. He wrote in 1762: 'I have taken care that North Britain shall bear its own share in all decorations - so that I will venture to say that posterity would even guess at the architect's being from beyond the Tweed' (J. Fleming, Robert Adam and His Circle in Edinburgh & Rome, London, 1962, p.305). The inscription and date are closer to Robert Adam's than James's hand, and the date appears to have been altered from 1764 to 1761. There is a later version of this capital in Adam vol.52/25 among a series of capitals for pilasters and columns (see particularly Adam vol.52/10-13). This Scottish theme can be found again in Robert Adam's pen sketch for a 'Hebrurian freize' of 1775 (see Adam vol.52/6).
Repr. A. A. Tait, Robert Adam, The Creative Mind: from the sketch to the finished drawing, catalogue of an exhibition at Sir John Soane's Museum, London, 1996, p.26
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