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CHAP. II.

PERSEPOLITAN AND PERSIAN.

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the highest supposed to be coeval with Persepolis, and formed for the sepulture of .he early kings of Persia ; and the lower to have belonged to the Parthian Sassanide dynasties.

5la. The early Persians were doubtless indebted to the still earlier Assyrians for the principles on which their art was based. Persepolis lies eastward of Nineveh'; its remains afford a more intimate acquaintance with the details and construction employed. In both places we find the same arrangement of bassi rilievi against the walls—entrances decorated with gigantic winged animals, bearing human heads--similarity in ornament and costume -processions like those at Nimroud and Khorsabad. The cuneiform character (see fig. 29.) is now a known language ; and from an inscription found on the third terrace, the structure is assigned to the time of Darius. Susa, the ancient Shushan, the winter residence of Cyrus, was explored by Mr. Loftus in 1851; and in 1886 by Mons. Dieulafoy, who has brought to the museum at the Louvre some fine examples of coloured tile wall works of the time of Darius, B.C. 521-485. The plan much resembled that at Persepolis, and both may have heen designed by the same architect.

516. The present architecture of Persia much resembles that of other Mahometan countries. The city of Ispahan, in its prosperity, is said to have been surrounded by a wall twenty miles in circuit. The houses are generally mean in external appearance : they commonly consist of a large square court, surrounded with rooms of varying dimensions for different uses, the sides of the area being planted with flowers, and refreshed by fountains, Distinct from this is a smaller court, sound which are distributed the apartments belonging to the females of the family; and almost every dwelling has a garden attached to it. The interior apartments of the richer classes are splendidly finished, though simply furnished. Those inhabited by the governor, public officers, and opulent merchants, may almost vie with palaces. Nearly all are constructed with sun-dried bricks, the public edifices only being built with burnt bricks; the roofs, mostly flat, have terraces, whereon the inhabitants sleep during several months of the year. According to Chardin, there were in his time within the walls 160 mosques, 48 colleges, 1802 caravanseras, 273 baths, 12 cemeteries, and 38,000 houses. But the city has since fallen into great ruin. The Shuh Meidan, however (figs. 31.

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and 32.), or royal square, is still one of the largest and finest in the world. It is 440 paces in length, and 160 in breadth. On its south side stands the royal mosque, erected liy Shah Abbas, in the sixteenth century, and constructed of stone, covered with highly varnished bricks and tiles, whereon are inscribed sentences of the Koran. On another side of the Meidan is a Mahometan college called the Medresse Shah Sultan Hossein. The entrance is through a lofty portico decorated with twisted columns of Tabriz marble, leading through two brazen gates, whose extremities are of. silver, and their whole surface sculptured and embossed with flowers, and verses from the Koran. Advancing into the court, on the right side is.a mosque, whose dome is covered with lacquered tiles, and adorned externally with ornaments of pure gold. This, and the minarets that flank it, are njw falling into decay. The other sides of the square are occupied, one, by a lofty and beautiful portico, and the remaining two by small square cells for students, twelve in each front, disposed in two stories. In the city arc few hospitals; one stands, however, beside the caravanserai of Shah Abbas, s ho erected both at the same time, that the revenue of the latter might support the proper ufcers of the hospital. That the reader may have a proper idea of one of these inns of the

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IIIT.

Last, if they may be so called, we have here given the plan of that just above named ( fig.

33.). The palaces of the kings are enclosed in a fort of lofty walls, about three miles in cir. cuit ; in general the front room or hall is very open, and the roof supported by carved and gilded columns. The windows glazed with curiously stained glass of a variety of colours ; each has a fountain in front. The palace of Chehel Sitoon or forty pillars, is placed in the middle of an immense square intersected by canals, and planted with trees. Towards the garden is an open saloon whose ceiling is borne by eighteen columns, inlaid with mirrors, and appearing at a dis. tance to consist entirely of

glass. The base of each is of niarble, sculptured into four lions, so placed that the shafts stand on them. Mirrors are distributed on the walls in great profusion, and the ceiling is ornamented with gilt flowers, An arched recess leads from the apartment just described into a spacious and splendid hall. whose roof is formed into a variety of domes, decorated with painting and gilding. The walls are partly of white marble, and partly covered with mirrors, and are moreover decorated with six large paintings, whose subjects are the battles and royal fêtes of Shah Ismael and Shah Abbas the Great. Though of considerable age, the colours are fresh, and the gilding still brilliant. Adjoining the palace is the barem, erected but a few years ago. The bazaars are much celebrated ; they consist of large wide passages, arched, and lighted from above, with buildings or stores on each side. One of these was formerly 600 geometrical paces in length, very broad and lofty. From these being adjacent to each other, a person might traverse the whole city sheltered from the weather. In Ispahan, we must not forget to notice that some fine bridges exist, which cross the river Zenderond.

Fig. 33.

CARAVANSERAI OY SHAN ARRAS.

SECT. V.

JEWISH AND PHENICIAN ARCHITECTURE. 52. We are searcely justified in giving a section, though short, to the architecture of the Jews, since the only buildings recorded as of that nation are the Temple of Jerusalem eonstructed by Solomon, and the house of the forest of Lebanon. The shepherd tribes of Israel, indeed, do not seem to have required such dwellings or temples as would lead them, when they settled in cities, to the adoption of any style very different from that of their neighbours. Whatever monuments are mentioned by them appear to have been rude, and have been already noticed in the section on Druidical and Celtic architecture. When Solomon ascended the throne, anxious to fulfil the wish his father had long entertained of erecting a fixed temple for the reception of the ark, he was not only obliged to send to Tyre for workmen, but for an architect also. Upon this temple a dissertation has been written by a Spaniard of the name of Villalpanda, wherein he, with consummate simplicity, urges that the orders, instead of being the invention of the Greeks, were the invention of God iimself, and that Callimachus most shamefully put forth pretensions to the formation of the Corinthian capital which, he says, had been used centuries before in the temple at Jerusalem. The following account of the temple is from the sixth chapter of the First Book of Kings. : Its plan was a parallelogram (taking the cubit at 1.824 ft., being the length generally assigned to it) of about 109}ft. by 365 ft., being as nearly as may be two thirds of the size of the church of St. Martin's in the Fields. In front was a pronaos, or portiem, stretching through the whole front (36.5 ft.) of the temple, and its depth was half its exteni. The cell, or main body of the temple, was 541 ft. deep, and the sanctuary beyond 369 feet, the height of it being equal to its length and breadth. The height of the middle part, or cell, was 54 ft.; and that of the portico the same as the sanctuary, --- that is, 365 ft., - judging froin the height of the columns. In the interior, the body of the temple was surrounded by three tiers of ehambers, to wliich there was an ascent by stairs; and the central part was open to the sky. The ends of the beams of the floors rested on corb is of stone, and were not inserted into the walls, which were lined with cedar, carved intr

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cherubims and palm trees, gilt. In the sanctuary two figures of cherubs were placed. wbose wings touched each other in the centre, and extended cutwards to the walls. These were 10 cubits high. In the front of the portico were two pillars of brass, which were cast by Hiram, “ a widow's sun of the tribe of Naphtali,” whose " father was a man of T'yre,

and who “ came to king Solomon and wrought all his work." These two pillars of brass (1 Kings, vii. 14, 15.) were each 18 cubits high, and their circumference was 12 cubits; hence their diameter was 382 cubits. The chapiters, or capitals, were 5 cubits high; and one of them was decorated with lilies upon a net-work ground, and the other with pomegranates. From the representation ( fig. 34.) here given, the reader must be struck with their resemblance to the columns of Egypt with their lotus leaves, and sometimes net-work. In short, the whole description would

almost as well apply to a temple of Egypt as to one at Jerusalem. And this tends, Fig. 34. though slightly it is true, to show that the Phænician workmen who were employed on the temple worked in the same style as those of Egypt. • 53. The house of the forest of Lebanon was larger than the temple, having been 100 cubits in length, by 50 in breadth ; it also had a portico, and from the description seems to have been similar in style.

54. Phænician Architecture. — That part of the great nation of Asia which settled on the coasts of Palestine, called in scripture Canaanites, or merchants, were afterwards by the Greeks called Phænicians. Sidon was originally their capital, and Tyre, which after. wards became greater than the parent itself, was at first only a colony. From what we have said in a previous section on the walls of Mycene, it may be fairly presumed that their architecture partook of the Cyclopean style ; but that it was much more highly decorated is extremely probable from the wealth of a people whose merchants were princes, and whose traffickers were the honourable of the earth. Besides the verses of Euripides, which point to the style of Phænician architecture, we have the authority of Lucian for asserting that it was Egyptian in character. Unfortunately all is surmise ; no monuments of Phænician architecture exist, and we therefore think it useless to dwell longer on the subject.

SECT. VI.

INDIAN ARCHITECTURE.

55. Whence the countries of India derived their architecture is a question that has occupied abler pens than that which we wield, and a long period has not passed away since the inpression on our own mind was, that the monuments of India were not so old as those of Egypt. Upon maturer reflection, we are not sure that impression was false ; but if the arts of a country do not change, if the manners and habits of the people have not varied, the admis

sion of the want of high antiquity of the monuments actually in existence will not settle the point. The capitals and columns about Persepolis have a remarkable similarity to some of the Hindoo examples, and seem to indicate a common origin; indeed, it is our opinion, and one which we have not adopted without considerable hesitation, that though the existing buildings of India be comparatively modern, they are in a style older than that of the time of their erection. Sir William Jones, whose opinion seeins to have been that the Indian temples and edifices are not of the highest antiquity, says (3rd Discourse), “ that they prove an early connection between India and Africa. The pyramids of Egypt, the colossal statues de. scribed by Pausanias and others, the Sphinx and the Hermes Canis (which last bears a great resemblance to the Varáhávatár, or the incarnation of Vishnu in the form of a boar), indicate the style and mythology of the same indefatigable workmen who formed the vast excavations of Canárah, the various temples and images of Buddha, and the idols which are continually dug up at Gayá or in its vicinity. The letters on many of these monuments appear, as I have before intimated, partly of Indian and partly of Abyssijian or Ethiopic origin; and all these indubitable facts may in.

duce no ill-grounded opinion that Ethiopia and Hindustan were peopled Fig. 39. A colums or or colunised by the same extraordinary race.” In a previous page (fig. 27.),

the reader will find a Persepolitan column and capital; we place before him, in fig. 35., an example from the Indra Subba which much resembles it in detail, and at the Nerta Chabei at Chillambaram are very similar examples. Between the styles of Persepolis and Egypt a resemblance will be hereafter traced, and to such an extent, that there seems no reasonable doubt of a common origin. The monuments of India may be divided into two classes, the excavated and constructed; the foriner being that wherein á building has been hollowed, or, as it were, quarried out of the rock; the latter, that built of separate and different sorts of materials, upon a regular plan, as may be seen in those buildings improperly called pagodas, which ornament the enclosures of the sacred edifices, of

TIIB INDRA SUBBA.

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which they are component parts. The class first named scems to have interested travellers more than the last, from the apparent difficulty of execution ; but on this account we are not so sure that they ought to create more astonishment than the constructed temple, except that, according to Daniel ( Asiat. Res. vol. i.), they are hollowed in hard and compact granite.

56. The monuments which belong to the first class are of two sorts; those actually hollowed out of rocks, and those presenting forms of apparently constructed buildings, but which are. in fact, rocks shaped by human hands into architectural forms. Of the first sort are the caves of Elephanta and Ellora ; of the last, the seven large pagodas of Mavalipowram. will immediately occur to the reader that the shaping of rocks into forms implies art, if the forms be imposing or well arranged: so, if the hollowing a rock into well-arranged and well-formed chambers be conducted in a way indicating an acquaintance with architectural effect, we are not to assume that a want of taste must be consequent on the first sort merely because it cannot be called constructive architecture. And here we must observe, that we think the writer in the Encyclopédie Méthodique (art. Arch. Indienne) fails in his reasoning: our notion being simply this, that as far as respects these monuments, if they are worthy to be ranked as works of art, the means by which they were produced have nothing to do with the question. It must, however, be admitted, that what the architect understands by ordonnance, or the composition of a building, and the proper arrangement of its several parts, points which so much engaged the attention of the Greeks and Romans, will not be found in Indian architecture as far as our acquaintance with it extends. Conjectures infinite might be placed before the reader on the antiquity of this species of art, but they would be valueless, no certain data, of which we are aware, existing to lead him in the right road ; and we must, therefore, be content with enumerating some of the principal works in this style. The caves at Ellora consist of several apartments ; the plan of that called the Indra Subba (fig. 36.) is here given, to show the species of plan which these places

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exhibit; and fig. 37. is a view of a portion of the interior of the same. The group of ternples which compose these excavations are as follow : Temple of Diagannatha.

it. in. Temple of Indra. External width of the excavation

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. 54 Length (interior)

Width Width (ditto)

Height Height

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22 Height of the pillars

Another Temple. Temple of Parocona.

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Temple of Mahadeo. Temple of Adi – Natha.

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Temple of Ramichouer.
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57. The most celebrated excavated temple is that of Elephanta ( fig. 38.), near Bombay,

of whose interior composition the reader may obtain a faint idea from the subjoined representation ( fig. 39.). It is 130 ft. long, 110 ft. wide, and 145 ft. high. The ceiling is flat, and is apparently supported by four ranks of columns, about 9 ft. high, and of a balustral form. These stand on pedestals, about one third of the height of the columns themselves. A great

portion of the walls is covered with colossal human figures, forty to fifty in number, in high relief, and distinguished by a variety of symbols, probably representing the attributes of the deities

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Fig. 38.

TEMPL& OF ELEPHANTA.

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INTERIOR OY THE TEMPI.B U ELEPHANTA.

Fig. 39 that were worshipped, or the actions of the heroes whom they represented. At the end of the cavern there is a dark recess, about 20 ft. square, entered by four doors, each Hanked by gigantic figures. “ These stupendous works," says Robertson, " are of such higdy antiquity, that, as the natives cannot, either from history or tradition, give any information concerning the time in which they were executed, they universally ascribe the formation of them to the power of superior beings. From the extent and grandeur of these subterrancous mansions, which intelligent travellers compare to the most celebrated monuments of human power and art in any part of the earth, it is manifest that they could not have been formed in that stage of social life where men continue divided into small tribes, unaccustomed to the efforts of persevering industry.” Excavations similar to those we have named are found at Canárah, in the Island of Salsette, near Bombay. In these there are four stories of galleries, leading in all to three hundred apartments. The front is formed by cutting away one side of the rock. The principal temple, 84 ft. long, and 40 ft. broad, is entered by a portico of columns. The roof is of the form of a vault, 40 ft. from the ground to its crown, and has the appearance of being supported by thirty pillars, octagonal in plan, whose capitals and bases are formed of elephants, tigers, and horses. The walls contain cavities for lamps, and are covered with sculptures of human figures of both sexes, elephants, horses, and lions. An altar, 27 ft. high and 20 ft. in diameter, stands at the further end, and over it is a dome shaped out of the rock. Though the sculptures in these caves are low in rank compared with the works of Greek and Etrurian artists, yet they are certainly in a style superior to the works of the Egyptians; and we infer from them a favourable opinion of the state of the arts in India at the period of their

" that formation. “ It is worthy of notice,” observes the historian we have just quoted, although several of the figures in the caverns at Elephanta be so different from those now exhibited in the pagodas as objects of veneration, that some learned Europeans

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