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Presentation drawing for a ruinous folly, 1777, unexecuted (1)


These ruins are very large and magnificent, rivalled only by the ruins Adam designed for Osterley. This is the only surviving drawing for these ruins, but King suggests that the structure might have been L-shaped like those Adam designed for Croome Court, Mellerstain and Tulloch Castle.

According to King this is Adam's stable design for Brampton Bryan, but (Adam volume 37/60) renders it unnecessary. In the 1996 Creative Mind exhibition Tait suggested that this design was intended as a court of domestic offices, and was based on Adam's Roman topographical drawings, specifically those for the Aurelian walls and Diocletian's Palace at Spalatro. In 2000, in the Robert Adam's Castles exhibition Astley concurred, suggesting that it was intended as a stable and coach house. Since that publication, Astley has revised his opinion on this, and believes it to be a scheme for works to one of the genuine Roman sites to the east, forming a ruinous eye catcher.



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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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Contents of Presentation drawing for a ruinous folly, 1777, unexecuted (1)