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might serve for extending the Phoenician collection. In the mean time it might perhaps be used for exhibiting such miscellaneous inferior sculptures as could be advantageously weeded from the regular series, though circumstances might temporarily prevent their removal from the Museum. In such case it might be entitled ' Supplemental Room.'
In accordance with a suggestion made in the Committee now sitting, the writer has added to the new buildings proposed in his plan another story, or second floor, over the first. The advantage of this is, that it would provide for objects which it might be more costly or inconvenient to accommodate elsewhere. But it involves necessarily two evils: 1. That the height of the second floor, involving an ascent of perhaps nearly one hundred steps (though this is not more than is common in continental museums), might excite complaint in English visitors. 2. That so lofty a building, by excluding all oblique rays from the east side of the GrKco-Roman galleries, would make the light on the statues and busts there placed somewhat too vertical.
With regard to the collections to be provided for on the upper floors, it is here assumed, though of course without any express authority, that Ethnography and Oriental Antiquities would be removed from the Museum, and better accommodated elsewhere. The British and Mediaeval Collections, however, are supposed to be retained; if they are removed, a modification of this plan must in consequence be made.
The apartments should all be about eighteen feet high, the windows of the same breadth as those below, but, except in the Terracotta Room, only about eight feet high, and as near the ceiling as possible. On the east side should be corresponding windows, so that each wall would be illuminated; for cross lights, though so injurious to sculptures, are generally desirable for galleries filled with wall-cases. All the windows should have ground glass, to prevent injury to the collections from the sun.
1. Vase Gallery.—Two hundred and twenty-two feet long, the southern half twenty-six feet wide, and the northern twenty-eight feet. The wall-cases should be about eight feet high, like those in our First Vase Room; and the transverse projections, flanked by pilasters, would be only of the same height, so as not to shut out the view of the upper part of the gallery; having glass on each side, they would serve for vases with double paintings, such as we now exhibit only in dwarf central cases. The most important vases should stand isolated on tables, or pedestals, on each side the gangway; as in the present arrangement of the Temple Collection. Although the superficial area of this gallery (five thousand nine hundred and ninety-two feet) is little more than a third greater than that occupied by vases in the present buildings (four thousand three hundred and twenty-one feet), the amount of accommodation it would afford is nearly double. For the present wall
OF A SECOHD
Book III, Chap. VII. ReconStructors And ProJectors.
Oldpield's Project Of ReconStruction (1858-1860)— continued.
Proposed Etruscan Apartment.
AccommoDation For TerraCottas.
cases, eight feet high, extend to one hundred and forty-six feet of linear measurement; those ten feet high will, when the collection is fully arranged, extend to eighty-four feet; the whole therefore may be reckoned as equivalent to two hundred and fifty-one feet of cases, eight feet high. The total extent, however, of such wall-cases in the proposed gallery is four hundred and- fifty-five feet. ■ The projections also, with, the tables and pedestals, may safely be estimated as providing twice the accommodation for vases painted on both sides which is now furnished by the dwarf central cases, besides exhibiting them much more conveniently. It should be added that the vases would be better lighted than at present; whilst the length and comparative openness of the gallery would produce a more striking impression on the passing visitor.
The accommodation here provided being so ample, it might be desirable to appropriate one compartment of the gallery to an exclusively Etruscan Collection, comprising not merely the pottery of the Etruscans, properly so called, but that for which they were really more distinguished in ancient times, their bronze and other metal work.
2. Terracotta Boom.—Fifty-six feet by seventeen. As no windows could be made on the east side, there should be no cases on the west; but the western windows, which do not correspond with the others of this story, should extend from near the ceiling to four or five feet from the floor. A sloping case might then be placed in each window, for lamps and other small objects, requiring a strong light. Against the east wall should be cases for vases, and other large objects.
3. Gallery of the Rotunda.—From one hundred and eighty to one hundred and ninety feet in circumference, and about nine feet wide. The powerful light from the centre of the dome would be favourable to terracotta statuettes and bas-reliefs, which could all be contained in shallow wall-cases, that would not materially narrow the gangway.* The Townley Collection of bas-reliefs, now in the Second Vase Room, might be arranged in panels all round, so as to produce a decorative effect, agreeable to their original destination.
The entire space provided in these two rooms is much more than our terracottas can absolutely require; but this will facilitate an ornamental arrangement of the collection, appropriate to the character of the larger room. The small spaces between the Rotunda and the main building would serve for closets.
4. Glass Boom, twenty-eight feet by twenty-six.—The fittings proper for glass being different from those of terracottas, it is desirable to give
* In the accompanying Plan (of the Parliamentary Report, 1860), pilasters of unnecessary size have been inadvertently introduced into this gallery, reducing both the extent of the wall-cases, and the breadth of the gangway, in a manner never intended.
it a separate room. This should be similarly arranged to the Vase Gallery, with wall-cases eight feet high, and table-cases in the centre.
5. Bronze Gallery, three apartments united; together eighty-two feet by twenty-eight.—As the advantage of a skylight for the bronze statuettes is necessarily sacrificed by the adoption of an upper floor, it would be best to place them, as far as possible, against each side of the transverse projections, separating those sides by internal partitions, and employing some contrivance to protect the bronzes from the cross light of the further windows, an arrangement possible with small objects in glass cases, though not with large statuary. In the middle of the gallery might be table-cases, placed longitudinally, or important objects on pedestals. The increase of accommodation in the Bronze Gallery, as in the Vase Gallery, is more than proportionate to the increase of space. Though the superficial area is only two thousand two hundred and ninety-six feet, in lieu of our present quantity, two thousand and twenty-one, the extent of wall-eases, which now is only one hundred and thirty-eight feet, would, even allowing doorways of twelve feet wide between each of these compartments, be increased to two hundred and fifty feet, equivalent, after allowing for the difference in height of the cases, to two hundred feet. This, if the Etruscan bronzes were transferred as already suggested, would liberally provide for the Greek and Roman Collection.
Each room should be fifteen to eighteen feet high; the windows exclusively on the east side, and extending from the ceiling to four or five feet from the floor. As the aspect is nearly N.E., the sun could not be injurious, and the glass of the windows, therefore, had better be unground.
1. British Booms, each twenty-seven feet by twenty-six.—That which adjoins the staircase (and, if necessary, those on each side), should be lighted from the roof, and have wall-cases all round, with a separate case in the centre. The other rooms should have wall-cases on the west side, and shallower cases against the transverse walls. Two long tablecases in each room might extend from the windows to a line with the doorway.
2. Mediaval Booms, each twenty-eight feet by twenty-seven, and similarly arranged to the British.—Though the entire superficial area in the British and Mediaeval Rooms is only five thousand and seventy-two feet, in lieu of four thousand and forty-six, the amount in the present building, yet the wall-space is four hundred and sixty-six feet, instead of only two hundred and ninety-seven, and the cases, having no windows above, might, if necessary, be made ten feet high, like the present. The gain in table-cases would be much greater. In lieu of six, there would be twelve, each sixteen or eighteen feet long, instead of ten; whilst the central case in the room adjoining the staircase might be at least as
Old Field's Project Of ReconStruction (1858-1860)— continued.
Gallery. Its AccomModation.
Chap. VII. RkconBtructor3 And ProJectors.
Oldheld's Project or ReconStruction (1858-1860)— continued.
capacious as the large separate case in the present British and Mediaeval Room. The lighting would throughout be more advantageous for these collections than at present; and the rooms, from the character of the windows, might be bright instead of gloomy.
3. Gem Boom.—As the contents of this and the succeeding room have more or less intrinsic value, an iron door might be placed at the end of the Mediaeval Gallery, to be open only when the public are admitted to the Museum. The Gem Room, twenty-eight feet by twenty-seven, would be fitted like the preceding. The gems would occupy the table-cases, which would accommodate a far larger collection than ours, and would exhibit them in the best possible light for such objects. In the wallcases might be displayed the gold and silver ornaments, which would have much more space than as now arranged, though in a room only of the same size.
4. Coin and Medal Gallery, fifty-six feet by seventeen.—As the dome of the Rotunda would only rise a few feet above the floor of this gallery, and would, from its curvature, recede to a distance of several feet, windows on the east side would be quite unobstructed. In each might stand a table-case, six or seven feet long, on which would be exhibited, under glass, a series of coins and medals which, though not the most valuable of our collection in the eyes of a numismatist, would suffice to give the public an interesting and instructive view of the monetary art. In the drawers of these cases might be kept the moulds and casts of the Coin Collection. Against the side walls might be upright cases, or frames, for extending the exhibition; but the walls facing the windows, having a front light, would be unsuitable for coins or medals, and must be employed for some other purpose.
5. The rooms which remain would be a private suite for the Coin Department. The present rooms of that department are arranged in an order the reverse of what is best for security and convenience, the coins being kept in an outer room, which must be passed in going either to the Keeper's study, or to the Ornament Room, a room open to all persons merely on application. In the accompanying plan the contents of the Ornament Room have been transferred to the Gem Room; and the Keeper's study is placed near the beginning of the private suite.
Outer Coin Room, twenty-eight feet by twenty-seven, for the freer exhibition of coins to properly introduced persons, for the use of artists copying coins or other minute objects, and all other purposes now served by the Medal Room, except the custody of the collection, and work of the department.
Inner Coin Room, fifty-five feet by twenty-eight, secured by a strong iron door, of which the Keeper, Assistant-Keeper, and Principal-Librarian, would alone have keys.—In this room, to which none but the departmental staff would be admitted, the coins and medals would be preserved, arranged, and catalogued; they would be carried hence by the officers into the Outer Room when required for inspection. The room is somewhat more than half as large again as the present Medal Room; and as the absence of visitors, and of the barriers their presence now requires, would leave the whole space free, there would be ample accommodation for any probable enlargement of the collection. The library of the department might be arranged partly in this, partly in the Outer Room.
Of the apartments reserved as private, two are placed at the south end of the first and second floors, and each of these might, if necessary, be subdivided into two small studies, each twenty-six feet by thirteen, for the use either of officers or students. Private rooms are, however, required on the ground floor, to replace the female students' room, and the Assistant-Keeper's study, proposed to be removed for the new Nimroud and Khorsabad Galleries. The most effectual provision for these and other wants would be one which has been suggested during the present inquiry, namely, to transfer to the Department of Antiquities the several rooms now occupied as the Trustees' Room and adjoining offices, and to remove the official establishment to new rooms to be erected on the east side of the Museum. Should this be found impracticable, the present Insect Room, and adjoining studies, might, in the event of the transfer of this part of the Zoological Department to the upper floor, furnish the required accommodation. In default of both these alternatives, rooms might be constructed north of the new Assyrian Galleries, though, in the opinion of the writer, this ground should only be built over as a last resort.
The basement, both of the old and new buildings, would, though unfitted for exhibition, and shut up from the public, be more or less available for workshops, storing-places, retiring-rooms, &c. No part of the existing basement would be made altogether useless, though the rooms under the present Greek Galleries would all be somewhat darkened. The basement under the new buildings may, with reference to lighting, be divided into three classes:—1. The rooms under the first six or small Greek Rooms, the south end of the Etruscan Room, and the north end of the Greek Galleries, would all have ordinary windows, and be better lighted than any part of the basement now used for the purposes mentioned. 2. The rooms under the Roman Galleries, which would also have windows, would be less well lighted than the preceding, being some feet below the level of Charlotte Street, and being further somewhat obscured by the grating over the area, and the parapet to screen it from passengers in the street, which would both probably be thought necessary. 3. The basement under the GraecoRoman, and greater part of the small Greek Galleries, would receive
Book III, Chap. VII. ReconStructor8 And ProJectors.
Use Of Basement.
Lighting Op Basement.