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Preliminary design for the great drawing room girandole, 1774, as executed (1)


The design for the great drawing room girandoles is included in the second volume of The works in architecture of Robert and James Adam (part 1, plate 5), and is illustrated in accordance with this drawing. Adam's preface to this plate reads:

Inside View of the Third and Great Withdrawing-room. The ornaments of the cieling and entablature are cheifly stucco gilt, with a mixture of paintings. The grounds are coloured with various tints. The frames for glasses, the pedestals and vases in the niches, and the girandoles on the piers, are of wood gilt...

Here it is suggested that the girandoles - in both Adam's drawing and the Works - are shown as executed. They were carved by Sefferin Nelson, but are not known to have survived.



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 Preliminary design for the great drawing room girandole, 1774, as executed (1)