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Model for the Soane Tomb, St Pancras Gardens, London, designed by Sir John Soane, c.1816
Height: 51.8cm, maximum
Museum number: L78
On display: Library-Dining Room
All spaces are in No. 13 Lincoln's Inn Fields unless identified as in No. 12, Soane's first house. For tours https://www.soane.org/your-visit
Soane erected this family tomb in 1816 in the Burial Ground of St-Giles-in-the-Fields (now St Pancras Gardens behind King’s Cross Station), following the death of his wife, Eliza, the previous November. He and his eldest son John are also buried there. The design is characteristic of Soane’s architecture at the height of his career. The shallow dome on a square base was a favourite form which is also beautifully incorporated into the Museum's Breakfast Room ceiling. Soane placed this model, which shows the tomb as executed, in a prominent position close to his dining table, where it served as a permanent memento mori. Incidentally, this design also served as inspiration for the iconic red telephone box in the 1920s.
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