Death and Burial
Adam had long suffered from stomach and bowel problems, probably caused by a peptic ulcer and irritable bowel syndrome. While at home - 11 Albermarle Street, London - on 1 March 1792, one of the ulcers burst, and on 3 March Adam died.
The funeral was held on 10 March; he was buried in the south aisle of Westminster Abbey. The pall-bearers were several of his clients: Henry Scott, 3rd Duke of Buccleuch; George Coventry, 6th Earl of Coventry; James Maitland, 8th Earl of Lauderdale; David Murray, 2nd Earl of Mansfield; Lord Frederick Campbell and Sir William Pulteney, 5th Baronet.
Knowing he was dying, he drafted his will on 2 March 1792. Having never married, Adam left his estate to his sisters Elizabeth Adam and Margaret Adam.
His obituary appeared in the March 1792 edition of The Gentleman's Magazine:
It is somewhat remarkable that the Arts should be deprived at the same time of two of their greatest ornaments, Sir Joshua Reynolds and Mr Adam: and it is difficult to say which of them excelled most in his particular profession... Mr Adam produced a total change in the architecture of this country: and his fertile genius in elegant ornament was not confined to the decoration of buildings, but has been diffused to every branch of manufacture. His talents extend beyond the lie of his own profession: he displayed in his numerous drawings in landscape a luxuriance of composition, and an effect of light and shadow, which have scarcely been equalled...to the last period of his life, Mr Adam displayed an increasing vigour of genius and refinement of taste: for in the space of one year preceeding his death, he designed eight great public works, besides twenty five private buildings, so various in their style, and so beautiful in their composition, that they have been allowed by the best judges, sufficient of themselves, to establish his fame unrivalled as an artist.
He left nearly 9,000 drawings, 8,856 of which (by both Robert and James Adam) were subsequently purchased in 1821 for £200 by the architect John Soane and are now at the Soane Museum in London.
Read more about this topic: Robert Adam
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