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  • image SM (53) volume 72/42

Reference number

SM (53) volume 72/42


Working drawings, 13, 14 and 29 July 1803


53 Section looking west; (Soane) three details of fascia; and elevation looking west


bar scale


(Soane) July 29: 1803 / Cornice / F, July 13: 1803 / N.B if the height of 11:3 / should (as it possibly may) / be only 11:0 the diffc / must be in the height of / the brickwork between / the stone plinth & the / stone fascia. // July 14: 1803 / NB The level of the Courts should / be if possible six inches / below the level of the Basement / floor, but this is not absolutely / necessary in all cases, three or 4 inches / might be sufficient for use, A. the recess as shewn 9 inches / on the face, but they must / depend on the gauged work / round the arch, which will / reduce them to 8½ or 8¼, / this must be determined exactly by the Bricklayer / before the mason can get / his plinth & base mouldings / on the stone fascia, fascia, A (five times), B (twice), July 14: 1803, Stone (five times), floor (three times), gauged arch, acct Office Cornice, old cornice, lettered A to E, full size, Wall line, D, full size, July 14: 1803, Fascia, C and dimensions in pen and red pen

Signed and dated

  • as above, July 1803


Soane office and Soane


I Taylor 1801


Drawing 53 is an early working drawing, for the brickwork and masonry of the building's external walls. Soane's inscription indicates his understanding of the imprecise nature of construction, writing that the Court 'should be if possible six inches below the level of the Basement floor, but this is not absolutely necessary in all cases, three or 4 inches might be sufficient...'. He has also ordered that the bricklayer must determine the dimensions of the arches before the mason can work on the stone fascia.



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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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