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  • image SM Adam volume 28/40

Reference number

SM Adam volume 28/40


[9] Finished drawing of a longitudinal section showiing the north end of the library, c1760, unexecuted


Longitudinal section of a two-and-a-half-storey building, with vaulted basement storey wings flanking a central hall with a Doric colonnade. At the ground storey there is a central entrance set within an Ionic aedicule. This is flanked by chimneypieces decorated with arabesques and moulding, and surmounted by figurative tablets, medallions and masks with festoons. The central hall is flanked by book rooms set behind Ionic screens


bar scale of 2 inches to 10 feet


Section of the South End of the Library Shewing the Book Rooms the Sub Hall & Vaulted Rooms of Ground Story (in the hand of William Adam) / For the Royal College of Physicians at Edinburgh (underwritten in pencil) and some dimensions given

Signed and dated

  • c1760
    datable to c1760

Medium and dimensions

Pen, pencil, wash and coloured washes within a single ruled border on laid paper (528 x 380)


Adam office hand, possibly Agostino Brunias, with part title inscription in the hand of William Adam




This drawing is incorrectly inscribed by William Adam as for the south end of the library. The section in fact shows a view to the north.


Bolton, 1922, Volume II, Index p. 12
King, 2001, Volume II, p. 219
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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