ROMAN ARCHITECTURE: FOUNDATIONS
Reading: Architecture, chapter three, pp. 116-127; 127-152.
Suggested: Norberg-Schulz, Chapter 3
Roman Republic (4th c. to 27 BC) Originally small republican city state,
chiefly of free landowners. Expansion into entire Mediterranean basin with
corresponding growth of commerical and financial power; world trade. Decline
of small landowners, growth of landed aristocracy, wealthy commercial class,
slave labor. Absorption of Greek culture.
Roman Empire (27 BC 476 AD) Empire established by Augustus. Conquests
in Central Europe and north to England during first two centuries. Centralized
and orderly world-wide organization around old and newly founded urban
centers. Creation of overall administrative and legal framework comparable
to modern. Extensive public works, imperial patronage of the arts.
Roman Architecture: Elements derived from both Greek and Etruscan traditions.
An architecture of wall and enclosed tactile space. Individual column with
entablature no longer the basic architectural unity. Orders used to articulate
the wall, to clarify and dramatize the organization of interior and exterior
by a framework of vertical and horizontal divsions: engaged columns, pilasters,
arch order, superposed orders both free-standing and applied (engaged),
painted architectural membering. Use of truss roof in trabeated construction,
and extensive use of vaulted construction for large uninterrupted spaces.
Vaults originally used only for purely utilitarian structures, gradually
adopted in monumental public architecture.
1) Rome: Round temple in the Forum Boarium (Temple by the Tiber), c.
2) Tivoli, nr. Rome: round temple of the Sibyl (so-called), 1st c.
3) NÓmes, France: Pont du Gard, 1st c. BC
4) NÓmes: Temple of Jupiter (= Maison CarrÈe), 1st c.
BC; fig. 167.
5) Palestrina (ancient Praeneste), near Rome: Sanctuary of Fortuna
Primigenia, c. 80 BC; figs. 174--176.
6) Pompeii: Vettii house, ca. 70 A.D.; see fig. 207 as comparable work.
7) Vitruvius, Ten Books on Architecture, written about 29 BC.
8) Domus Aurea (Golden House) of Nero, Rome, 64 AD; fig. 183
9) Colosseum (= Flavian amphitheater), Rome: c. 72-80 AD; figs. 155--158.
10) Baths of Diocletian, Rome, 398-306 AD
11) Split, Croatia, Palace of Diocletian, c. 300 AD; fig. 215--216.
Terms: illusionism ("a perception that fails to give the
true character of the object perceived"), dome, barrel vault, groin
vault (see figs. 139--145), pilaster, half-column, basilica, post-and-lintel
(trabeated system), arch or vault (arcuated system); tensile and compressive