Sunday, 22 June 2008

Sir John Soane

I hadn't been to the Soane's Museum in over 10 years, but it was just as I remembered it. Sir John Soane was born in 1753, the son of a bricklayer, and died after a long and distinguished career, in 1837. He designed so many famous buildings, among which the Bank of England. He was an avid collector of antiquities, as you can see from the picture above. Among the most unusual items there is the sarcophagus of Setis I, made of opal, now turned yellow, with a dense inscription which was not as yet deciphered at the time. The discovery of this wonderful sarcophagus was made by Giovanni Battista Belzoni, known as the great Belzoni. I must add a picture:
Belzoni was a 6' 7" tall explorer/strongman, a very bizarre character indeed. I'd love to read his book about archeological discoveries.

Here's my take on Soane's house: