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Attributed to Theodore Jacobsen, died 1772

The Chapel of the Foundling Hospital, London

Additional Title(s):

Design for the Interior of the Chapel of the Foundling Hospital

Materials & Techniques:
Watercolor, pen and brown ink over graphite on medium, slightly textured, cream laid paper
Sheet: 4 1/2 x 13 1/16 inches (11.4 x 33.2 cm)

Watermark: (pasted down)

Credit Line:
Yale Center for British Art, Paul Mellon Collection
Copyright Status:
Public Domain
Accession Number:
Drawing & Watercolors-Architectural
Prints and Drawings
Subject Terms:
architectural subject | chapels | churches | views
Associated Places:
Foundling Hospital | London
Accessible by appointment in the Study Room [Request]
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IIIF Manifest:

This drawing is one of a set of three interior perspectives of the Foundling Hospital’s chapel (see B1977.14.1148–50). Located in Bloomsbury, London, the Foundling Hospital was designed by Theodore Jacobsen. Completed in 1754, the chapel was situated among the main buildings of the hospital, facing the front court and adjoining the projecting east and west wings. The Foundling Hospital, established as a "Hospital for the Maintenance and Education of Exposed and Deserted Young Children,” was granted a royal charter in 1739 and quickly became one of London’s most popular charities. Prominent artists supported the institution, and their paintings lined the court room and picture gallery. With its organ donated by Handel, the chapel became famous for its musical performances, in turn raising funds for the hospital.

This view shows the finished interior, looking east toward the altar with the Adoration of the Magi altarpiece donated by Andrea Casali already installed, which did not take place until 1752. The western gallery is supported by two columns in the foreground. The large clerk’s reading desk is visible near the center of the room, south of the aisle. A view of the chapel from the other end is included in Rudolph Ackermann's publication Microcosm of London (1808), illustrated by Augustus Charles Pugin and Thomas Rowlandson. The Foundling Hospital was demolished in 1928.

Gallery label for installation of YCBA collection, 2014

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