Although similar to an oil painting at the Hunterian Art Gallery, this engraving (also by David Allan) differs in various ways. It was cut in about 1760 and shows the interior of the upper floor of the College Library at the University of Glasgow in High Street, as it was when occupied by the Foulis Academy of Art and Design between 1752 and 1774. The pictures on the far wall differ from those found in the Hunterian painting and there is a pile of reference books for the students' use in the foreground.
The youth of the students is evident - many enrolled as early as aged eleven - and the light which made the room so suitable for an art academy floods in through the large and distinctive windows of the library. It is believed that the figure with long robe and dark hat in the left foreground is Professor James Moore, Professor of Greek 1746-1774, and that the Foulis brothers are the men conversing immediately behind him.
Reference: Mitchell Library, GC ILL 156
Reproduced with the permission of Glasgow City Council, Libraries Information and Learning