Biography of Marco Vitruvius pollio | Roman architect.


(1st century BC) Roman architect, author of treatise on architecture. Place and year of birth of the architect, who lived during the time of Caesar and Augustus is unknown. Maffei was considered of Verona; others believe that he was born in Placencia, and some judge you natural Mola of Gaeta, the ancient Formia; This last assumption seems to be the better founded.
It is known, however, that their existence was long and active: was a soldier, with Caesar in Hispania and Greece, where he acted as military engineer. He then lived in Rome, and there worked in the Imperial buildings. Julius Caesar first, and Augusto then helped him in his old age with a lifetime grant, which is evidence of the recognition of both. In Rome he composed, during the last years of his life, his famous treatise.
The same thing that the traces of their existence, also the remains of his work have been almost entirely erased by time; There are only some in the town of Fano, which built Vitruvius a famous basilica and a still visible between triumphal arch, although modified. In the field of the technique is owed the invention of quinary module in the construction of aqueducts. It also projected war machines and built many monuments.
The fame of Vitruvius is the Treaty De architectura, the only work of its kind that remains of classical antiquity. Known and used in the middle ages, the edition of Vitruvius in Rome Treaty in 1486 offered to the artists of the Renaissance, imbued with admiration by the virtues of classical culture so typical of the era, a privileged channel through which reproduced its architectural forms. "Five orders - wrote Bradbury - Italy built and continue building it still."

In Vitruvian Man, Leonardo da Vinci studied the proportions of the human body on the basis of passages
on architecture
In fact, Bradbury is came up short in this assertion, as in any country and time, since the days of Rome until our architectural neoclassicism based always its own standards in the Greek orders reduced to the scheme of Vitruvius. Subsequently published in most of the countries, and still today the work of Vitruvius constitutes an irreplaceable documentary source, also for the information provided on the painting and sculpture, Greek and Roman, with news of artists and works.
About the architecture
Divided into ten books and probably composed towards the 27 a. c., on architecture is the only organic Treaty of its kind that antiquity has transmitted to us. The text, which has the character of overview and reporting manual, and which reflects the procedures of Roman architecture during the last century of the Republic, is sometimes incomplete and dark. The author, already old and sick, dedicated work to Augustus, her protector.
Book I begins with considerations about the qualities and the duties of the architect and the nature of architecture, understood as science and art, and its various aspects. The "aedificatio" implies, indeed, the construction of public buildings (classified according to their object is the "defensie", the "religio", or the "opportunitas") and the construction of private buildings ("sundials", "machinatio"). Then alludes to the urban problem: the choice of own places for the founding of cities, the layout of the streets, the construction of the enclosure of defensive walls and the distribution of the buildings within the enclosure.
In book II, after historical information about the development of structures from the earliest days of humanity, Vitruvius is the choice and the use of materials of construction and masonry structures, with practical examples of implementation in Greek and Roman works. In Book III, the author describes the various types of temples giving rules of proportion and symmetry to the mappings and to each of its parts, and focusing in particular on the Ionic order. Column assumes importance in relation to the proportions of the temple, which are mathematically designed in concept.
Book IV is Doric, Corinthian and Tuscan, temples with ritual and technical precepts of construction. The 5th book is devoted to public utility buildings: Forum, the basilica, the Treasury, prison, the curia, theatres, porches, baths, the fore and ports. Vitruvius is confirmed as technical expert where is theatres and ports, and even collecting you innovative when appointment and summarily describes his work: the basilica di Fano.
In the sixth book, rambling about the private buildings, Vitruvius is released of Greek writers and reflects on the technical arguments and differences of climate and customs that have defined various in Greek and Roman private buildings provisions. In Book VII the author gives practical precepts for (enjalbegados, flooring, painted and sculptured decorations) finishes that confer to the buildings 'venustatera the firmitatem'. Student of hydraulics and hydraulic lines constructor, Vitruvius is in Book VIII of these materials. They are still in book IX geometric and astronomical problems applied to the "sundials". Finally, in book X, returning to be based on the Greeks, the author speaks of mechanics and machines of peace and war.
Vitruvius thought is inspired by concepts of arithmetic rationalism of Pythagorean origin that are compounded when combined with practical principles. Indeed, in his judgment intervenes continuously experience in the art of building element. From a theoretical point of view his ideas are somewhat confusing, and its interpretation of some categories on which the author seems melts there is nothing safe ("ordinatio", "dispositio", "distributio", "eurythmy", "sinimetria").
The Treaty was lucky varied throughout the centuries, but did not exercise real action on the artistic thought to León Battista Alberti (15th century) and the scholars of the Renaissance, and had, thanks to the printing press, vast broadcasting (the Prince Edition was printed in Rome in 1486). Especially in the 16th century, Vitruvius fame soared even beyond the actual merits of his work: it acquired value of rigid canon of ancient architecture, and as such, it was understood in the normative sense.
The most famous Italian translation of Vitruvius pollio Framework Treaty is that of Cesariano (1483-1543): Di Lucio Vitruvio Pollione e Architetture Cesare Augusto... translato in vulgare sermone commentato et affigurato da Cesare Cesariano, cittadino mediolanense, professore d'architettura. It was published in 1512, in Como, with arbitrary additions of Benedetto Glovio and Mauro Bono. This differs from previous editions not only for its rich typographical presentation, but represent the first test of translation in Italian of the Treaty and for the breadth of his commentary. In terms of the language, its premiosidad and its darkness were reprochadas him. Despite its flaws, the edition was made with good method, and revised on the codices, so constituted considerable progress with respect to the previous. In addition, your comment showed vast erudition of Cesariano, with frequent quotations from the classics, especially of Pliny. Steadily cared for by Cesariano Edition had a vast influence on which followed, until the famous Venetian translation of Daniele Barbaro came to constitute a true overcoming of Cesariano.
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