Journal Mobile

A Lewis
Journal Issue: 
Volume 38: Issue 2: 2008




The architectural history of the College’s George Street hall, completed in 1781, has commonly been overlooked because it was demolished and deemed to have been a disappointment to both its owners and its architect, James Craig. This article reassesses the College’s ambitions and Craig’s efforts to match them, by  accounting  for  the  number  of  drawings  which  were  made  for  the  site  and building, Craig’s sources of inspiration and the building’s appearance and influence. The  paper  reveals  that  the  hall  was  actually  intended  to  be  part  of  a  larger complex of buildings and rival Register House as the New Town’s most impressive public edifice. The building has not been examined in this way before, and Craig’s use of his library, drawing equipment and knowledge of London’s architects and architecture  are  discussed  to  offer  insight  into  his  personal  vision  for  the  hall’s appearance and meaning.