- The drawings from the office of Sir John Soane
- (90) 26th Septr 1818
A comparison with the very small front elevation reproduced in Soane's Designs for public and private buildings, 1833, plate XLVIII**** shows that it corresponds with drawing 89 (variant design N1) except that the published design has pediments over the projecting end bays (as with variant design K) and not a single one that spans three bays in the centre as here. The Greek key ornament and antefixes are not shown in the published design. Other designs (variant designs C1, C2 and E) have a central pediment spanning a single bay.
Drawing 90 is of five bays with round-headed windows save for those in the basement, plain pilasters link the end bays and a Greek key frieze runs below the cornice. Of the other side elevations (35, 36, 39, 72) drawing 91 is closest to drawing 72 though without pediments over the end bays.
The perspective (drawing 91, N2) is without the pediment and antefixes shown on drawing 89.
This final or near-final design is more reticent than some of the earlier ones. It keeps the projecting bays 1 and 5 of the first and second storeys that appear on several previous designs as well as the 'loggia' form of the ground floor that occurs early on and the string course design has been used before. The decision about entrances and the treatment of the marginal elements at each end and in particular, the left-hand side (now almost invisible) has been decided.
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).