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Reference number

Adam vol.57/48


Rome; aqueduct, possibly of the Acqua Julia


Sketch showing view of the ruins of five arches of a Roman aqueduct, possibly of the Acqua Julia, in a landscape setting with irregular domestic buildings in the foreground


Inscribed in ink 48

Medium and dimensions

Pen and grey washes with a pencil margin on added bottom strip 184 x 285


Robert Adam


Three lines of names


This and vol.57/49 are among the numerous drawings that Adam made of the Roman aqueducts - Marcia, Claudia, Felice. His interest may have been especially fired by Piranesi, who was at work in the late 1750s on his Le Rovine del Castello dell'Acqua Giulia of 1761. Around this time Adam also acquired his manuscript of Carlo Fontana's Ultissimo Trattato dell'Acque Correnti of 1696, which Soane later purchased in the Adam sale of 1818 (to insert: library ref for this). It is also possible that this is a view of the ruins on the Palatine, see Keaveney 1988, pl.17.



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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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