About this artwork

Adam’s design for a bridge connecting Dalkeith Palace with the main Edinburgh road shows how important the example of ancient Rome remained in eighteenth-century Scotland. Its monumental scale recalls the magnificence of Roman bridges and aqueducts, while its elaborate surface decoration derives from the great temples and bathhouses built by the emperors for the Roman people. Although built in simpler form than Adam originally intended, it remains an astonishing testimony to the architect’s ability to adapt ancient forms to the needs of eighteenth-century clients.

  • title:
    Design for a Doric Bridge (Montague Bridge, Dalkeith House, Midlothian)
  • accession number:
    D 441
  • artist:
  • gallery:
  • object type:
  • materials:
    Pen, black ink and wash with traces of pencil on paper, pricked for transfer
  • date created:
    1791
  • measurements:
    38.60 x 57.00 cm
  • credit line:
    David Laing Bequest to the Royal Scottish Academy transferred 1910

Robert Adam

Robert Adam