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Ancient Greek and Roman Architecture Architectural History ACT 322 Doris Kemp.

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Presentation on theme: "Ancient Greek and Roman Architecture Architectural History ACT 322 Doris Kemp."— Presentation transcript:

1 Ancient Greek and Roman Architecture Architectural History ACT 322 Doris Kemp

2 Topics Prehistory: The Etruscans Prehistory: The Etruscans Roman Characteristics Roman Characteristics Building Materials Building Materials Architectural Ideals Architectural Ideals Structural Revolution Structural Revolution Structures Structures Civic Architecture Civic Architecture Tombs Tombs

3 Roman Architecture: Prehistory: The Etruscans Etruscan civilization Etruscan civilization Preceded the Roman Empire in Italy Preceded the Roman Empire in Italy Most of their architecture was destroyed by the Romans Most of their architecture was destroyed by the Romans Only hidden structures, such as tombs, were spared Only hidden structures, such as tombs, were spared Much of their architecture was greatly influenced by the Greeks Much of their architecture was greatly influenced by the Greeks The legacy of Etruscan architecture lives on through its influence in Roman architecture The legacy of Etruscan architecture lives on through its influence in Roman architecture

4 Roman Architecture: Roman Characteristics April 21, 753 B.C. April 21, 753 B.C. Pinpointed by the Romans as the day Rome was founded Pinpointed by the Romans as the day Rome was founded Early Romans were militant and very disciplined Early Romans were militant and very disciplined Lacking in artistic culture Lacking in artistic culture Romans absorbed the Greek culture Romans absorbed the Greek culture Literature, philosophy, science, and painting Literature, philosophy, science, and painting New appreciation of the arts New appreciation of the arts

5 Roman Architecture: Roman Characteristics Roman architecture emerged from Hellenistic and Etruscan influences Roman architecture emerged from Hellenistic and Etruscan influences It held many original aspects, however It held many original aspects, however Materials and building techniques Materials and building techniques Fulfilled practical purposes Fulfilled practical purposes Served commerce, industry, and shipping Served commerce, industry, and shipping Ports Ports Roads Roads Aqueducts Aqueducts

6 Roman Architecture: Building Materials Building materials were very important to the success of Roman architecture Building materials were very important to the success of Roman architecture Access to a wide variety of building stone including: Access to a wide variety of building stone including: Volcanic tufa Volcanic tufa Limestone Limestone Travertine Travertine Nearly unlimited quantities of white marble Nearly unlimited quantities of white marble Quarry opened by Augustus north of Pisa Quarry opened by Augustus north of Pisa Other varieties were imported from the Far East Other varieties were imported from the Far East

7 Roman Architecture: Building Materials Brick Brick Romans perfected the art of brick-making Romans perfected the art of brick-making Concrete Concrete Perfected this material Perfected this material Became the most characteristic material in Roman structures Became the most characteristic material in Roman structures Was used to construct massive walls and great vaults Was used to construct massive walls and great vaults

8 Roman Architecture: Architectural Ideals Space Space To the Romans, the space inside a structure was just as important as the exterior To the Romans, the space inside a structure was just as important as the exterior Interior space was the primary focus of Roman architecture and was shaped by vaults, arches, and walls Interior space was the primary focus of Roman architecture and was shaped by vaults, arches, and walls Romans were fond of extravagance Romans were fond of extravagance Architecture for the powerful was gaudy and colorful, not like the ruins as seen today Architecture for the powerful was gaudy and colorful, not like the ruins as seen today

9 Roman Architecture: Structural Revolution The combination of arches, vaults, and concrete in architecture are a pure Roman creation The combination of arches, vaults, and concrete in architecture are a pure Roman creation The individual elements had been used in earlier civilizations The individual elements had been used in earlier civilizations Egyptians and Mesopotamians had used primitive arch forms Egyptians and Mesopotamians had used primitive arch forms Greeks had experimented with the arch and concrete with little success Greeks had experimented with the arch and concrete with little success Etruscans had constructed vault-like forms Etruscans had constructed vault-like forms

10 Roman Architecture: Structural Revolution Arches Arches More intricate than a simple post-and-lintel system More intricate than a simple post-and-lintel system Formed by a multitude of small elements that curve over space by resting against each other in a delicate balance Formed by a multitude of small elements that curve over space by resting against each other in a delicate balance Voussoirs Voussoirs The elements used to create an arch The elements used to create an arch The shape of the structure keeps each voussoir in place The shape of the structure keeps each voussoir in place Held together by their own force Held together by their own force

11 Roman Architecture: Structural Revolution Photo: Sullivan

12 Roman Architecture: Structural Revolution Vault Vault Created by extending an arch along its axis Created by extending an arch along its axis Merely an extended arch Merely an extended arch Supports and provides a roof for a given area Supports and provides a roof for a given area Types of vaults Types of vaults Barrel/Tunnel vault Barrel/Tunnel vault Cross/Groin vault Cross/Groin vault Dome Dome

13 Roman Architecture: Structural Revolution Barrel/Tunnel Vaults Barrel/Tunnel Vaults The earliest type of vault The earliest type of vault Appear in limited form in Egypt, Mesopotamia, and Hellenistic Greece Appear in limited form in Egypt, Mesopotamia, and Hellenistic Greece Has a few limitations Has a few limitations Exerts a continuous load, therefore needing constant support Exerts a continuous load, therefore needing constant support Difficult to illuminate Difficult to illuminate Increases in length require thicker vault supports Increases in length require thicker vault supports

14 Roman Architecture: Structural Revolution Photo: Sullivan

15 Roman Architecture: Structural Revolution Cross/Groin Vaults Cross/Groin Vaults Created to overcome the limitations of barrel vaults Created to overcome the limitations of barrel vaults Employed by the Romans very heavily Employed by the Romans very heavily Formed by intersecting two barrel vaults at right angles Formed by intersecting two barrel vaults at right angles Limitations Limitations Resistant to square plans Resistant to square plans

16 Roman Architecture: Structural Revolution Photo: Sullivan

17 Roman Architecture: Structural Revolution Dome Dome The grandest type of vault The grandest type of vault Types Types Cloister vault Cloister vault An eight-sided vault, with an octagon-shaped dome An eight-sided vault, with an octagon-shaped dome Formed by crossing barrel vaults over an octagonal plan Formed by crossing barrel vaults over an octagonal plan Rare in Rome, more prevalent in medieval architecture Rare in Rome, more prevalent in medieval architecture True dome True dome Perfectly rounded dome, preferred by the Romans Perfectly rounded dome, preferred by the Romans Built up in complete rings wherein each ring forms a self- supporting component of the final dome Built up in complete rings wherein each ring forms a self- supporting component of the final dome

18 Roman Architecture: Structural Revolution Photo: Sullivan

19 Roman Architecture: Structural Revolution Photo: Sullivan

20 Roman Architecture: Structural Revolution Concrete Concrete A mixture of mortar-like cement with an aggregate A mixture of mortar-like cement with an aggregate Many advantages over traditional stone Many advantages over traditional stone Does not need to be quarried, shaped, or transported Does not need to be quarried, shaped, or transported Highly skilled labor was not needed to prepare the concrete Highly skilled labor was not needed to prepare the concrete Can be cast in just about any shape imaginable Can be cast in just about any shape imaginable Arches and vaults could be economically fabricated Arches and vaults could be economically fabricated

21 Roman Architecture: Structural Revolution Concrete Concrete Surfaces Surfaces Romans developed many types of facings that were weather resistant and pleasant to the eye Romans developed many types of facings that were weather resistant and pleasant to the eye Opus incertum Opus incertum Random shaped stones of concrete Random shaped stones of concrete Opus testaceum Opus testaceum Brick facing; made concrete wall look as if it were constructed from bricks Brick facing; made concrete wall look as if it were constructed from bricks Opus mixtum Opus mixtum Decorative patterns of tufa, stone, or brick Decorative patterns of tufa, stone, or brick

22 Roman Architecture: Structural Revolution Opus mixtum; Opus mixtum; Photo: Sullivan

23 Roman Architecture: Roman Structures Roman Aqueducts Roman Aqueducts Used to supply the civilization with water from afar Used to supply the civilization with water from afar Utilized an arch to create a continuous line of decent for water Utilized an arch to create a continuous line of decent for water Aqua Claudia Aqua Claudia Brought water over solid masonry some ten miles into Rome Brought water over solid masonry some ten miles into Rome Some areas were over 100 ft. in height Some areas were over 100 ft. in height

24 Roman Architecture: Roman Structures Photo: Sullivan

25 Roman Architecture: Roman Structures Roman Bridges Roman Bridges Were generally lower in height and broader than aqueducts Were generally lower in height and broader than aqueducts Two important Roman Bridges: Two important Roman Bridges: Pons Fabricus Pons Fabricus Pons Milvius Pons Milvius

26 Roman Architecture: Roman Structures Photo: Sullivan

27 Roman Architecture: Roman Structures Roman Theatres Roman Theatres Adopted the Greek theatre and transformed it Adopted the Greek theatre and transformed it The Roman theatre was closed, unlike the Greeks who preferred an open, outside theatre The Roman theatre was closed, unlike the Greeks who preferred an open, outside theatre Theatre of Marcellus Theatre of Marcellus Integrated Roman style with that of the Greeks Integrated Roman style with that of the Greeks Provided around 10,000 seats arranged in three tiers Provided around 10,000 seats arranged in three tiers

28 Roman Architecture: Roman Structures Photo: Sullivan

29 Roman Architecture: Roman Structures Roman Arenas Roman Arenas The Colosseum The Colosseum Built by Flavian emperors Vespasian, Titus, and Doitian Built by Flavian emperors Vespasian, Titus, and Doitian Located on the site of an artificial lake that had been part of Nero’s Golden House Located on the site of an artificial lake that had been part of Nero’s Golden House Extensive system of tunnels, chambers, and mechanical devices below the arena floor Extensive system of tunnels, chambers, and mechanical devices below the arena floor Hydraulic provision used to flood the arena for naval displays and mock battles Hydraulic provision used to flood the arena for naval displays and mock battles

30 Roman Architecture: Roman Structures Photo: Sullivan

31 Roman Architecture: Roman Structures Photo: Sullivan

32 Roman Architecture: Roman Structures Roman Circuses Roman Circuses Circus Maximus Circus Maximus Oldest and largest circus stadium Oldest and largest circus stadium Rebuilt and destroyed from the first through third centuries A.D. Rebuilt and destroyed from the first through third centuries A.D.

33 Roman Architecture: Roman Structures Roman Baths Roman Baths Strenuous daily life prompted the Romans to construct large public baths Strenuous daily life prompted the Romans to construct large public baths Wealthy citizens also constructed private baths in their domiciles Wealthy citizens also constructed private baths in their domiciles Featured elaborate heating systems Featured elaborate heating systems Furnaces beneath floors Furnaces beneath floors Heat was transmitted to rooms by tile ducts, warming the floors and the walls Heat was transmitted to rooms by tile ducts, warming the floors and the walls

34 Roman Architecture: Roman Structures Roman Temples Roman Temples Earliest Roman temples were indistinguishable from those of the Etruscans Earliest Roman temples were indistinguishable from those of the Etruscans Axial plan Axial plan Deep porch Deep porch Widely spaced columns Widely spaced columns High podiums High podiums

35 Roman Architecture: Roman Structures Roman Temples Roman Temples Temple of Jupiter Capitolinus Temple of Jupiter Capitolinus Originally built in the late sixth century B.C. Originally built in the late sixth century B.C. Rebuilt in 69 B.C. Rebuilt in 69 B.C. Photo: Sullivan

36 Roman Architecture: Roman Structures Roman Temples Roman Temples Pantheon Pantheon Located in Rome Located in Rome Considered by many to be the greatest structure of antiquity to have survived in a state of near completeness Considered by many to be the greatest structure of antiquity to have survived in a state of near completeness Built by Hadrian between A.D 118 and 128 Built by Hadrian between A.D 118 and 128 Three notable parts: Three notable parts: Immense, domed cella Immense, domed cella Deep, octastyle Corinthian porch Deep, octastyle Corinthian porch Block-like intermediate structure Block-like intermediate structure

37 Roman Architecture: Roman Structures Photo: Sullivan

38 Roman Architecture: Roman Structures Photo: Sullivan

39 Roman Architecture: Roman Structures Roman Basilicas Roman Basilicas An important category of Roman architecture An important category of Roman architecture Most important Roman source for early Christian architecture Most important Roman source for early Christian architecture Pure Roman style of architecture Pure Roman style of architecture Basilica Basilica Essentially means a roofed hall, rectangular in plan, sometimes with an apse Essentially means a roofed hall, rectangular in plan, sometimes with an apse

40 Roman Architecture: Roman Structures Roman Basilicas Roman Basilicas Basilica Ulpia Basilica Ulpia A.D A.D Finest example of the columnar basilica Finest example of the columnar basilica Built by Trajan Built by Trajan Important model for later ages Important model for later ages Photo: Sullivan

41 Roman Architecture: Roman Structures Roman Basilicas Roman Basilicas Basilica in Trier, Germany Basilica in Trier, Germany Early fourth century A.D. Early fourth century A.D. Built by Constantine Built by Constantine The final Roman basilica The final Roman basilica Served as an important model for the Romanesque period of architecture Served as an important model for the Romanesque period of architecture Photo: Sullivan

42 Roman Architecture: Civic Architecture Houses and Villas Houses and Villas Private domiciles reflected their inhabitants Private domiciles reflected their inhabitants Lower classes lived in meager, cramped apartments located on the upper floors of shops and other buildings Lower classes lived in meager, cramped apartments located on the upper floors of shops and other buildings Middle classes lived on the lower floors and many homes had balconies, good ventilation, and running water Middle classes lived on the lower floors and many homes had balconies, good ventilation, and running water Upper classes usually owned a house, know as a domus. Upper classes usually owned a house, know as a domus. Standalone structures Standalone structures Featured courtyards and gardens Featured courtyards and gardens Many had running water Many had running water

43 Roman Architecture: Tombs Tombs Tombs Romans were great builders of tombs Romans were great builders of tombs Different from the Greeks and Egyptians in scale and religious style Different from the Greeks and Egyptians in scale and religious style Tomb of M. Vergilius Eurysaces Tomb of M. Vergilius Eurysaces Citizen who made a fortune selling bread to Caesar's army Citizen who made a fortune selling bread to Caesar's army Built a tomb in the shape of an oven Built a tomb in the shape of an oven

44 Roman Architecture: Tombs Photo: Sullivan

45 Roman Architecture: Tombs Tombs Tombs Roman catacombs Roman catacombs Built by the poor as place of burial Built by the poor as place of burial Photo: Sullivan

46 References Sullivan, Mary; Sullivan, Mary; Trachtenburg/Hyman; Architecture: From Prehistory to Postmodernity Trachtenburg/Hyman; Architecture: From Prehistory to Postmodernity Wodehouse/Moffett; A History of Western Architecture Wodehouse/Moffett; A History of Western Architecture

47 Ancient Greek and Roman Architecture Architectural History ACT 322 Doris Kemp


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