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Design for the gateway, c1763-65, executed with alterations (1)

Notes

This gateway-cum-entrance screen was designed in c1763-65 but not built until 1773. The design was executed with alterations. The niches on each lodge lack the urns shown in the drawing.

The sculpted Percy heraldic lion above the gateway is one of very few examples of sculpture being included on the roofline of one of Adam's small buildings. Other examples are the Admiralty Screen, the Cumberland House lodges, and the Huntwick Arch at Nostell Priory.

The gateway design is illustrated in the first plate of volume I of The works in architecture of Robert and James Adam, and details are given in the second plate. It is described as 'fronting the great west road'.

Adam is also thought to have made alterations to the porters' lodges in front of the house. These are seventeenth-century buildings, but the eighteenth-century external stuccowork is thought to have been designed by Adam during the 1760s. The attribution is based chiefly on the fact that Adam was working at Syon during this time. Moreover, there is a drawing for these lodges within the Adam drawings collection at the V&A Museum. If these lodges were worked on by Adam, they qualify as his earliest crenellated buildings.

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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.

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