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You are here: CollectionsOnline  /  Sir John Soane's Album. This album of Indian miniatures and calligraphy was assembled in England soon after 1810. It is bound in English gilt morocco of c.1810-20 and bears Sir John Soane's bookplate. In all probability Soane was the first and only owner of the volume. An interesting feature of the contents is the presence of Sir Elijah Impey's seal on a number of the folios. The seal is engraved in Persian characters: Sir Elijah Impey, first Chief Justice, year 16 [AD 1775]. Sir Elijah Impey was Chief Justice of Bengal from 1774 to 1783, and he made a substantial collection of miniatures during his residence in India. The collection was subsequently dispersed at auction by H. Phillips of 73 New Bond Street on 21st May, 1810. The binding is lettered on the spine Collection of Drawings Costume &c of the Persians. Many of the interleaves are of Whatman paper watermarked with the date 1810. There is a manuscript title: A Collection of Original Drawings Illustrating the Costumes, Manners, & Amusement of the Persians. Nevertheless, most of the album's contents are of Indian origin. 37 folios, mostly Mughal, 18th century. 400 x 310 mm. Assembled in England, c.1810-20.
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Reference number

Vol 145

Purpose

Sir John Soane's Album. This album of Indian miniatures and calligraphy was assembled in England soon after 1810. It is bound in English gilt morocco of c.1810-20 and bears Sir John Soane's bookplate. In all probability Soane was the first and only owner of the volume. An interesting feature of the contents is the presence of Sir Elijah Impey's seal on a number of the folios. The seal is engraved in Persian characters: Sir Elijah Impey, first Chief Justice, year 16 [AD 1775]. Sir Elijah Impey was Chief Justice of Bengal from 1774 to 1783, and he made a substantial collection of miniatures during his residence in India. The collection was subsequently dispersed at auction by H. Phillips of 73 New Bond Street on 21st May, 1810. The binding is lettered on the spine Collection of Drawings Costume &c of the Persians. Many of the interleaves are of Whatman paper watermarked with the date 1810. There is a manuscript title: A Collection of Original Drawings Illustrating the Costumes, Manners, & Amusement of the Persians. Nevertheless, most of the album's contents are of Indian origin. 37 folios, mostly Mughal, 18th century. 400 x 310 mm. Assembled in England, c.1810-20.

Inscribed

The binding is lettered on the spine Collection of Drawings Costume &c of the Persians

Medium and dimensions

Many of the interleaves are of Whatman paper watermarked with the date 1810. 400 x 310 mm.

Level

Drawing

Digitisation of the Drawings Collection has been made possible through the generosity of the Leon Levy Foundation

If you have any further information about this object, please contact us: drawings@soane.org.uk

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).