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  • image SM 45/1/6

Reference number

SM 45/1/6


Copy of measured drawing


Plan of Theatre at Syracuse, adjacent buildings and road


in Toise


as above, labelled Subterranean Pass. To Orchest. , The Road wc goes over part of the ear theatre, abt 80 feet and Catacombe

Signed and dated

  • June 9th 1779

Medium and dimensions

Pencil, some pricking through for transfer, on secretary paper with five fold marks (373 x 440)




C & I Honig, post horn within crowned cartouche and C & I Honig below


Partly pricked through, drawn to a scale of French toise (about 6.39 feet) and with extraneous information, the drawing is probably a copy. The Greek Theatre probably dates from the Hellenistic period (c.325-31 B.C.). (M. Guido, Sicily: an archaeological guide, 1967, pp.182-4). The 'ear' refers to the famous 'ear' of King Dionysius by which he spied on the imprisoned in the caves below. (Professor du Prey, January/February 2009)


P.du Prey, John Soane's architectural education 1753-80, 1977, p.234; P.du Prey, John Soane: the making of an architect, 1982, p.140



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.

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