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3.11 Systematic overview of the rules given by Vitruvius incl. comparisons

erstellt von Kulawik Veröffentlicht 05.06.2019 20:47, zuletzt verändert: 05.06.2019 20:47

But how would these elements of architecture have to be put together and organized in a single building? Vitrivius provides a great deal of information regarding these questions, but his remarks are occasionally contradictory and tend to be scattered throughout the Ten Books. Therefore, some sort of abstract in the length of a separate book would be needed and very useful:

Segue poi un collegamento de le regole di Vitruvio con gli esempii de l’opere, il qual libbro sarà molto utile, e bello, perche dove Vitruvio porrà una regola, o vero uno ordine d’Architettura in questo libbro si discorrerà in qual luogo ne li edifizii antichi sia osservato tal ordine, e trovando che in qualche altro edifizio l’Architettor sene sia partito l’avvertirà, discorrendo la ragione, perche in quel luogo non si siano osservate le regole date da Vitruvio: cosi si congiugnerà in un certo modo la pratica con la teorica, e si scenderà in belle, e utile contemplazioni.[Tolomei 1547, 82v]

It follows then a collection of the rules given by Vitruvius together with examples from [built] works; which book would be very useful and beautiful, because wherever Vitruvius gives one rule or, to be true, an order for architecture, in this book one will discover where among the ancient buildings this order has been observerd, and one will also find if an architect in some other building has left this rule, and the reason will be explained why in this case the rules given by Vitruvius have not been observed: By doing so, one will unite in a certain mode the practice with the theory, and come to useful contemplations.

While comparing Vitruvius’s rules with examples from surviving architecture that seem to contradict those rules, the authors would try to explain such deviations — and presumably come to conclusions helpful to practitioners as well as more theoretically engaged readers.

As for the classical orders of columns, at least a part of this planned book seems to have been realized with Jacopo Barozzi da Vignola’s Regola delli cinque ordini di architettura, publishe in or shortly before 1562.[Vignola (1562)] It presents the five classical orders — including composite, which did not yet exist in Vitruvius’s lifetime — in a systematic way. By uniting them through a common module so that they could be used in the same building without much effort and calculation to achieve the appropriate proportions, Vignola adds a crucial new element that did not exist in antiquity. His motivation was to overcome the nonsystematic usage of orders in antiquity by deriving a new (and first) complete system from the best examples among all those he had studied. In fact, Vasari [Vasari 1568, vol. III,2; p. 700] and Egnatio Danti — Vignola’s biographer, son of Vignola’s collaborator, the architect Giulio Danti and editor of his Le due regole della prospettiva pratica [Vignola / Danti 1583, unnumbered pp. 2-3] — inform us that Vignola measured «tutte l’anticaglie» = «all the antiquities» in Rome in the service of the Accademia led by Marcello Cervini:

Though it is known from Vasari’s and Danti’s reports that Vignola worked for the Accademia, the lack of architectural drawings by Vignola attributable to this part of his work may have prevented the search for drawings by other draughtsmen related to it, e.g. by working under the supervision of Vignola. It is striking that no one has ever argued before that Vignola’s Regola may be related to Tolomei’s program, even though Vignola mentions that at least parts of his designs for the Regola are based on his careful studies of ancient architecture. And Vasari reports that the early studies in the service of the Accademia were very useful for Vignola’s later development [Vasari 1568, vol. III,2; p. 700]. The lack of relevant drawings and biographical information from other sources may have discouraged further investigations into the early history of Vignola’s Regola and its possible relation to Tolomei’s program as well as for Vignola’s work for the Accademia.