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.
 
Representative buildings:
1) Rome: Round temple in the Forum Boarium (Temple by the Tiber), c. 120 BC
2) Tivoli, nr. Rome: round temple of the Sibyl (so-called), 1st c. BC

 
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 forces