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Mr Stewart: designs for a ceiling and chimneypiece, N.D. (3)


Mystery surrounds these three drawings. W.L. Spiers has suggested that they were commissioned by the Stewart family of Physgill House on the Isle of Whithorn. Descendants of the Stewart family remain at Physgill today, and it is possible that some member of that family was responsible for commissioning these designs from Adam. It is not known if these designs were executed, or if they were intended for Physgill itself, or another house. Moreover, it is not known if any further Adam designs were commissioned by the Stewart family.

A.T. Bolton, The architecture of Robert and James Adam, 1922, Volume II, Index p. 58; W.L. Spiers, Catalogue of designs and drawings by Robert and James Adam in Sir John Soane's Museum, 1979, pp. 58, 88; D. King, The complete works of Robert and James Adam and unbuilt Adam, 2001, Volume II, p. 179

Frances Sands, 2012



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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Contents of Mr Stewart: designs for a ceiling and chimneypiece, N.D. (3)