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image Adam vol.23/193

Reference number

Adam vol.23/193

Purpose

Design for a chimneypiece showing a small central pediment above a head of Apollo in relief with herms on either side. The chimneypiece is shown in elevation, section and plan.

Aspect

Elevation, section and plan

Scale

scale: 1 inch to 10 ft

Inscribed

Inscribed in ink in a contemporary hand face of the Room; below face of ye breaking and with dimensions

Signed and dated

Undated

Medium and dimensions

Pen, ink framing line267 x 227, with three horizontal fold lines

Hand

Office of James Adam

Notes

In the opinion of A. A. Tait, this drawing relates in time and place or subject to those contained in Adam volume 7.This is a copy of a design found in Isaac Ware, Designs of Inigo Jones and others (London, 1731, pl.36). In making his copy, the draughtsman has eliminated the overmantle, and the composition is similar to that in plate 22, the design to which John Adam referred in his Memorandum for furnishing the Great Bedchamber at his father's Hopetoun House in 1755: 'Ware page 22 is thought will do well for this room: and the Apollo's head will answer for the blocks in the frieze ...' (J. Fleming, Robert Adam and His Circle in Edinburgh & Rome, London, 1962, p.92). The present State Bedroom was reconstructed as a dining room in c.1820, but a chimneypiece in the present hall is very close to that in plate 22 of John Vardy, Some Designs of Mr Inigo Jones and Mr William Kent, 1744 (for Vardy drawings, see R. White, 'John Vardy', in The Architectural Outsiders, London, 1985, pp.63-81).

Level

Drawing

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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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