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  • image SM Adam volume 19/119

Reference number

SM Adam volume 19/119


[5] Finished drawing for the observatory, 1767


Elevation of a four-storey tower, with a central arched door on the ground storey, flanked by balustraded horse-shoe stairs, and with the central bay on the first and second storeys behind a screen of two columns, and with a central door, and the central bay is flanked by a bay containing windows on the first and second storeys, and articulated by pilasters, and above the second storey is a frieze of enclosed rosettes and swags, surmounted by a balustraded viewing platform, with three single-bay domed towers


bar scale of 1/4 inch to 1 foot


Elevation of a Building proposed to be executed by his Majesty at Richmond Park / Register of the Weather (underwritten in pencil)

Signed and dated

  • 1767
    datable to 1767

Medium and dimensions

Pen, pencil and wash on laid paper (303 x 454)


Adam office hand, possibly William Hamilton


Bolton, 1922, Volume II, Index p. 26
King, 2001, Volume II, p. 223
Rowan, 2003, p. 48
For a full list of literature references see scheme notes.



Exhibition history

'Bob the Roman': Heroic Antiquity and the Architecture of Robert Adam, Sir John Soane's Museum, London, 27 June - 27 September 2003; New York School of Interior Design Gallery, 29 September - 4 December 2004

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).