- The drawings from the office of Sir John Soane
The plans included in drawings 35 and 36 show the old wall of the previous Accountants' Office flush with the wall of the new Accountants Office (red wash). The doorway at the east end of the new Accountants' Office aligns with the doorway of the old office. The latter is turned into the Bill Office. The central and left doors in the elevations lead, respectively, to the Bill Office and a stairwell. The right door is blind.
A note in drawing 36 instructs the design to include flower paterae modelled on a soffit from the Temple of Mars (Ultor, Rome). The final design included paterae such as these. At his Royal Academy Lectures, Soane presented a drawing of the Temple of Mars (SM 19/8/5) as well as a detail of a soffit from the temple (SM 26/3/7). In Lecture II, he praised the temple's remaining columns, capitals, entablature and architrave, stating: 'There is such a taste in the composition and such correctness in the execution, as makes us lament the loss of any part of this exquisite work' (J. Soane, ed. A.T. Bolton, Lectures on architecture, 1929, p.37).
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.
Browse (via the vertical menu to the left) and search results for Drawings include a mixture of Concise catalogue records – drawn from an outline list of the collection – and fuller records where drawings have been catalogued in more detail (an ongoing process).