Sir John Soane's Museum Drawings

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Italy: Baia: the Temple of Diana. View of the interior of a domed temple,  that of Diana at Baia. In the foreground are several large ruined flooded vaults.




Inscribed in pencil in a contemporary hand Baia; in ink 14

Dated/date range

Undated, probably April 1755.


Pencil, grey and brown washes

207 x 310




Robert Adam


Adam vol.57/14


In April 1755 Robert Adam wrote of 'the Temples of Diana, Mercurey & Venus, of which my friend Clérisseau & I took sketches to enable our friends to partake of our pleasures' (National Archives of Scotland, Edinburgh, Clerk of Penicuik Collection, GD18/4769); this is one of such drawings that has survived. Charles-Louis Clérisseau's version of the same view is shown in Adam vol.57/27. The Temple of Venus is, in fact, part of a large complex of baths and recreation rooms dating from the 1st-3rd centuries AD called the Baths of Nero, which included the Temple of Mercury and the Temple of Diana nearby. There is a contemporary account of the Temple of Diana in Paoli, Avanzi Delle Antichita Esistenti a Pozzuoli Cuma e Baja, Naples, 1768, f.31 and pl.LII; the vaulted ruins in the foreground of Adam's drawing are shown in pl.LV.

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10 11 2006

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