England picked up the crucial wicket of Justin Langer to reduce Australia to 28 for one after Paul Collingwood and Kevin Pietersen enabled the tourists to post a daunting total of 551-6 in the second Ashes Test on Saturday.
Langer was caught by Kevin Pietersen at gully for four off the bowling of Andrew Flintoff, leaving Matthew Hayden (12 not out) and Ricky Ponting (11 not out) to a survive a tricky nine-over spell through to stumps.
England were able to declare late in the final session after Collingwood grafted 206 and Pietersen 158 to put the tourists in control of the match just days after they were thrashed by 277 runs in the first Test in Brisbane.
Collingwood became only the third Englishman, and the first since Wally Hammond 70 years ago, to score a Test double-century in Australia after a superb display over eight and a half hours.
He also shared a record fourth-wicket partnership of 310 with Pietersen, who equaled his highest Test score, to subdue Australia's bowlers on a docile pitch that offered little encouragement.
Shane Warne (1-167), Brett Lee (1-139) and Glenn McGrath (0-107) all conceded over 100 runs in one of the worst collective performances of their careers with Stuart Clark (3-75) the pick of the bowlers.
Collingwood was out on the last ball before tea but not before he had torn up the record books with a calculated 392-ball innings that featured 16 boundaries and helped erase the disappointment of getting out for 96 in Brisbane.
He broke Jack Hobbs's record of 187, set in 1928-29, for the highest score by an Englishman at Adelaide Oval as well his beating his own previous high Test score of 186, made against Pakistan at Lord's earlier this year.
The 30-year-old also became just the eighth Englishman to score a double-ton in an Ashes Test and joined Tip Foster and Wally Hammond as the only men to achieve the feat on Australian spoil.
Collingwood's partnership with Pietersen was the highest fourth-wicket stand by an English pair against Australia, beating Graham Thorpe and Nasser Hussain's 288 at Edgbaston in 1997.
It was also the highest stand in an Ashes Test at Adelaide, beating the 262 made by Hammond and Douglas Jardine in 1928-29.
The pair started the day with England on 266-3 and added 202 more before the partnership finally ended when a tired Collingwood edged Clark to wicketkeeper Adam Gilchrist.
Collingwood had resumed on 98 and brought up his maiden Ashes ton in the second over of the day when he clipped express paceman Lee through midwicket for three.
Pietersen also made amends for falling agonisingly short of a hundred in Brisbane when he was out for 92 as he brought up his fourth Test ton off 149 balls in 199 minutes.
The South African-born batsman was more aggressive than Collingwood, smashing 14 fours and a six, but chanced his arm once too often and was run by a direct hit from Ponting after equaling his 158 from the last Ashes Test in 2005.
Warne captured his first wicket in his 47th over when Geraint Jones was caught by Damien Martyn for one, but Flintoff (38 not out) and Ashley Giles (27 not out) added 60 in 63 minutes to set up the declaration.
England's prospects of winning the match to square the series will depend on the performance of their bowlers, who conceded more than 800 runs in Brisbane for the gain of just 10 wickets.
Their main strike bowler Steve Harmison, who struggled with his rhythm in Brisbane, did not bowl in Saturday's final half hour with Flintoff sharing the new ball with Matthew Hoggard.
England won back the Ashes last year for the first time since 1989.