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image SM volume 111/45

Reference number

SM volume 111/45

Purpose

Presentation design for the Maestricht Garden

Aspect

Plan

Scale

100 feet to approx. 4/5 inches

Signed and dated

c.1712

Medium and dimensions

Pen and brown ink with green, black, grey, red and blue washes; on two joined sheets of laid paper; 752 x 468.

Hand

Henry Wise

Watermark

Strasbourg lily / LVG = IV

Notes

The attribution of this drawing to Henry Wise rather than Charles Bridgeman (as suggested by Willis) is on comparison with Wise's final presentation design for the Maestricht Garden in the Royal Collection (Roberts, Royal Landscape, Fig. 175), and with his design for the garden of Buckingham House, SM 111/42. Very similar shading and outline techniques are used on all three drawings. This plan is a close pair with Wise's final design in the Royal Collection. The only differences are in details of planting in the lower rectangular lawn area and the absence of fountains in the central lake. The Maestricht Garden was begun on the north-east side of Windsor Castle soon after September 1713, when Wise submitted an estimate of £6,874 'for levelling, new making and planting a division of ground on the North side of the Castle' (Green, Henry Wise, p. 83). An aerial photograph of 1964 (Roberts, Fig. 177) shows that a start was made on the alleys on the north side and bordering the lake. Work was abandoned soon after the accession of George I in August 1714. The length of the garden on this plan is 5650 feet and its width is about 2000 feet.

Literature

Wren Society, VIII, pl. 16; P. Willis, Charles Bridgeman and the English Landscape Garden, Newcastle-upon-Tyne, 2002, pl. 234 (attributed to Bridgeman); A. Geraghty, The Architectural Drawings of Sir Christopher Wren at All Souls College Oxford: A Complete Catalogue, Aldershot, 2007, p. 196

Level

Drawing

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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