Towards the close of the eighteenth century, when extensive building operations were in course of procedure over that area in London which is now commonly known as the Adelphi, and which, I need hardly say, is situated on the north bank of the Thames, not far from Charing Cross, a quatrain was written to the following effect :—
" 4 Two brothers of the name of Adam, Who keep their coaches and their mesdames' —Quoth John, in surly mood, to Thomas— 4 Have stol'n the very river from us !'"
The lines referred, of course, to the erection of those quasi-classic edifices which were then being completed after the designs of the two architects who flourished during the reign of George the Third, and afterwards became known as the « Adelphian Brothers"
The elder of the two—Robert Adam—was born at Kirkcaldy in 1728. Having passed through the usual experiences associated with the average childhood, he commenced his studies in architecture, and elected to spend some years in Italy in order that he might imbibe his knowledge from the fountain-head. On his return to England, he joined hands with his brother James. In 1768—before he was forty-he was appointed " Architect to the King," entered Parliament, won popular favour by the character of his rendering of the Classic, died in 1792, and was buried in Westminster Abbey.
It will be seen, therefore, that the brothers Adam were at work on the production of their designs during the period when "Chippendale," " Heppelwhite/' and "Sheraton" were
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