Wednesday, February 15, 2006

The Philosophical Tradition of Classical Architecture. Part I, An Overview

Please see my new article over at Gregory Shue's Classical Architecture website
Vitruvius famously starts Book I, Chapter 1 of his Ten Books on Architecture with a brief overview of the education of an architect. He tells us that the required subjects are writing, drawing, geometry, optics, arithmetic, history, physics, natural and moral philosophy, music, law, physics, and astronomy. Many contemporary readers of Vitruvius are frustrated by what he leaves unsaid in his writings. However, he states that he is the authority in architecture itself, and does not claim to be an expert in any of those particular subjects: we can then forgive him for leaving gaps in our knowledge of the ancient world. I hope to be able to fill in a few of these gaps to provide a somewhat fuller picture of what an architect in ancient Greece or Rome knew, in particular by looking into the well-known writings of ancient teachers that formed the basis for the Greco-Roman educational system....

The field of Classical Architecture was until recently relegated to expensive coffee table books of historical structures, but now a few architects are making the bold move to make new structures in the Classical Tradition. "Grand Tradition" is an interactive website the promotes the new practice of this beautiful, meaningful architecture.

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