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  • image SM volume 111/16

Reference number

SM volume 111/16


[3/1] Front elevation, showing the north elevation of the Queen's House and alternatives, left and right, for the design and positioning of the domes, dome vestibules, colonnades and front porticoes of the hall and chapel ranges


Elevation, with alternatives, left and right, the left side including the north elevations of the main buildling and base wing of the pendant ranges to the King Charles II Building and base wing


About 26 feet to 1 inch

Signed and dated

  • Undated, but datable 1695

Medium and dimensions

Pen and brown ink with grey wash over graphite under-drawing, on laid paper, laid down; central vertical fold; formerly mounted on backing paper with ruled border frame; 157 x 527




No watermark


A preparatory pencil study for this elevation with alternatives is at All Souls College (Geraghty 2007, no. 195). The left (east) side of the All Souls study was developed to become the right (west) side of this elevation, both having forward projecting rusticated basement storeys.

The dome on the left is in the position ultimately adopted: at the end of the hall or chapel block, immediately behind the colonnade. The dome on the right side is set back by one window bay. This single bay forms a link between the colonnade and the dome and is a point of entry from the north side.

The two domed vestibules are treated differently in front elevation. The left side has a projecting six-column portico with paired outer columns and a single flight of stairs up to a broad, flat-headed entrance. The right side has an applied portico of six pilasters, the central four set forward in pairs. Below is a rusticated wall, seemingly set forward of the main wall. This structure appears to provide ground-level access to the dome and colonnade, access that would have involved steps within the projecting structure.The right-hand scheme relates very closely to the plan of the seven-block scheme at All Souls (Geraghty 2007, no. 194). This has the link bay and the applied portico (here with internal columns, corresponding to the columns framing the arched door). Drawn in pencil on Geraghty 2007, no. 194 are forward-projecting ground-floor walls that align with the south wall of the King Charles II Building. The purpose of these walls (visible in side elevation in [3/4]) was to provide covered (or screened) ground-level links between the large rooms at the south ends of the two northern ranges and the colonnades and domed vestibules of the hall and chapel ranges.

The elevation omits the King Charles II Building and base wing to show the full side elevation of the hall range on the right. The elevation of the Queen's House lacks the chimney stacks and east-side roof turret. It is also positioned about 8 feet too low in relation to the new hospital buildings. Hawksmoor attempted to relate an enlarged version of the main entablature of the Queen's House to the main entablature of the hall and chapel portico, but this visual link would have been impossible to achieve.


Wren Society, VI, pl. 21 bottom; Geraghty 2007, pp. 131-32.



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