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  • image SM Adam volume 1/57

Reference number

SM Adam volume 1/57


[7] Preliminary design for the principal front of the south building, c1784, unexecuted


Elevation of a two-and-a-half storey, thirteen-bay building with a balustraded, pitched roof, a central dome with an oculus, and a rusticated ground-storey level. The central three-bays of the ground-storey level form an arcade and at the first-storey level there is statuary set within balustraded niches, flanked by giant Corinthian columns. Above this there are figurative roundels. The central three-bays are flanked by two-and-a-half-storey, single-bay, pedimented pavilions, articulated by Corinthian columns. At the first-storey level there are balustraded aedicula windows, with roundels flanked by swags above. The pavilions have friezes of rosettes and the left-hand pavilion has a roundel set within the tympanum and is surmounted by acroteria supporting statuary. At the ground-storey level of the building there is a stepped entrance in the third bay and at the first-storey level there are balustraded, aedicula windows. In the upper register there is a string course of Vitruvian scroll and quarter-height windows. The building terminates in single-bay pavilions with raised, paired Corinthian columns. At the ground-storey level there is a tripartite window, with a balustraded aedicula window and a quarter-height window above


to a scale

Signed and dated

  • c1784

Medium and dimensions

Pencil on laid paper (509 x 245)


Robert Adam


J KOOL surmounted by a fleur-de-lis within a crowned cartouche


Bolton, 1922, Volume II, pp. 173-79; Index, p. 6
King, 2001, Volume II, p. 53
For a full list of literature references see scheme notes.



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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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