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Elevation of the N.W. front of the New Government House, Calcutta

Elevation of the N.W. front of the New Government House, Calcutta

Artist: Best, James (fl. 1804)

Medium: Watercolour

Date: 1804

Shelfmark: WD1319

Item number: 1319

Genre: Drawing

Watercolour by James Best (fl. 1804) of the elevation of the N.W. front of New Government House at Calcutta in West Bengal, dated c. 1804. The image is inscribed on the front in ink: 'Elevation of the North West front of the New Government House. Drawn by Jas Best:', and '28. Reed from Secretary's Office.' This image shows the north side of the Ionic columned arcade of the lower storey with its portico and large staircase, under which carriages drove to the hidden entrance. Marquess Wellesley became Governor-General of Calcutta in 1798 and decided that the existing Government House was not a suitable building for his position and needs. Captain Charles Wyatt of the Engineers, the architect of the new Government House, based his designs for the building on Kedleston Hall in Derbyshire, although the latter has only two storeys instead of three. Four large ceremonial gateways marked each end of the carriageways on the north and south facades. These were partly based on Adam's archways at Syon House in Middlesex. The building's four wings were constructed specifically to allow for the free movement of air.

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