Vitruvius thesis on architecture

However, such code often takes on a life of its own, despite casual structure and poor or non-existent documentation. It works, so why fix it? When a related problem arises, the quickest way to address it might be to expediently modify this working code, rather than design a proper, general program from the ground up. Even systems with well-defined architectures are prone to structural erosion.

Vitruvius thesis on architecture

Another assertion from Vitruvius is that a structure must exhibit the three qualities of firmitas, utilitas, and vinustas in English, it must be strong and durable, useful, and beautiful and graceful.

He points out that the welfare of the urban community of Rome depends on the quality of the water supply. Complementing the aqueducts already in use not only in terms of geographical distribution but also in functions served, the Aqua Virgo was one of the most specialized main aqueducts of ancient Rome.

The Aqua Virgo entered the city from the north over the Pincian and ran paces from a point of entry under the Horti Lucullani to a place in the Campus Martius in front of the Saepta Julia.

Easily being traceable today, the paces spanning arches starts in the triangle formed by the modern-day streets of Capo le Case, Due Macelli, and South Giuseppe. From this point, it ran to the Trevi Fountain where it then turned westward and crossed the Via Lata at the Palazzo Sciarra.

Crossing many arches from this point still more arches were discovered in even though Frontinus wrote that they ended at the Saepta, also short of the paces he described for their length.

The water was carried across the bridge of Agrippa after it was first transported from the low area of the Campus Martius over the higher ground of the ridge surrounding the Pantheon basin by using the Vitruvius thesis on architecture drainage system as well as the Stagnum an artificial lake and the Euripus an artificial channel for swimming where it was drained into the Tiber River.


The chorobates, a bench with weighted strings on its sides for measuring the angle of the ground. It had a system of notches and a short channel in the middle which could have been used for determining the direction of water flow.

A possible reconstruction of this device from these remains is that it might have been a shaft with iron-sheeted enclosed wooden arms in the shape of a cross at the top, and bronze angle-brackets near the center of the arms to help prevent inaccuracy and wear of the wood with a plumb line hanging near the end of each of the arms.

The plumb-bobs at the end of the lines were paired in two, opposite of each other from the arms. One would sight down the plummet to its opposite side to get a reading when the cross was off center.

The cross was placed on a bracket and not directly on the shaft. The bottom of the bracket fitted into a bronze collar set into the top of the staff. The distance horizontally across from the center of the cross was To use the groma sights could be set onto a second groma a distance away from the first, then two more gromas were positioned the same distance as the first to the second away from the first two at right angles to form a square.

The groma enabled the survey of straight lines, squares, rectangles and other geometric shapes. Not only could it tell time, it could also sight buildings from each other. A plumbline from the apex was suspended down to the lower bar indicating when the instrument was level. The windlass consists of a drum on a horizontal axle anchored against displacement.

Tensioning a rope to the drum by using some form of a grip the drum is rotated.

Vitruvius thesis on architecture

The windlass would have been used in cranes during the Roman times. To lift water the Romans used a tool called a tympanum which consisted of a large wheel with many internal sectional chambers.

It is to be made of bronze. The lower part consists of two similar cylinders at a small distance apart, with outlet pipes. These pipes converge like the prongs of a fork, and meet in a vessel placed in the middle.

In this vessel, valves are to be accurately fitted above the top openings of the pipes. And the valves by closing the mouths of the pipes retain what has been forced by air into the vessel.

Above the vessel, a cover like an inverted funnel is fitted and attached, by a pin well wedged, so that the force of the incoming water may not cause the cover to rise.ON THE FUNDAMENTAL TERMS OF VITRUVIUS’S ARCHITECTURAL THEORY Vitruvius unfolds his theory of architecture in I, 2, In these passages he maintains that architecture is distinguished from random building practice through a set of principles: ordinatio, in Greek taxis, dispositio, in Greek diathesis, eurythmia, symmetria, decor, distributio, in Greek oikonomia.1 There is, however.

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Vitruvius thesis on architecture

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Aqua Virgo - Wikipedia