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The Arch of Sergius at Pola is a perfect square, without attic, like that of Titus,
The Arch of Titus at Rome, raised by the senate and Roman people to com. memorate the conquest of Judæa, is one of the best examples of proportion that remain: built of white marble, it is a monument of constructive art, some of the blocks being 9 feet square, and 2 feet thick; the arch is composed of eleven voussoirs 16 feet deep. For a detailed account of its construction and ornament the reader is re. ferred to the “ Architectural Antiquities of Rome.”
The proportions are a square, as is the opening of the archway, up to the springing; and not a double square, as described by Serlio. The pedestals are in height nearly half the opening of the archway, which Palladio observes was the ordinary proportion
AKON OF SERGIUS AT POLA. given by the ancients. The entire length of the upper member of the cornice in this example is 48 feet, which dimension corresponds with the entire height, almost to a fraction: the width of the opening is 17 feet 6 inches, a trifle more than one-third of the entire width: bounding the façade by a parallelogram, excluding the attic, and drawing two diagonals, we obtain the centre from which the arch is struck, which rule will apply to the other
triumphal arches with a single opening, though varying materially from the principles laid down by Poliphile, and a lopted by Serlio and other architects at the revival of Italian architecture. The Arch of Titus is a square comprising its entire façade ; that of Poliphile a square up to the under side of the entablature; consequently, the opening of the triumphal way is in width half the height to the top of the impost upon which the archivolt rests, while in the more ancient the entire aperture without the arch is a square.
In the Arch of Poli. phile the entablature and pediments are nearly equal in quantity to each of the piers upon which they are carried; and the piers themselves are in width only one quarter of the whole breadth of the façade: it will be found, however, that nearly the same proportions exist between supports and supported in both examples.
The Arch of Augustus at Susu has single arch: proportion a square to the top of the entabla Fig. 1053. ture, opening a square to the springing: width divided into four, two given to the opening and one to each pier, which has a three-quarter column at the angle: attic as high as piers are wide. In arches with three openings, as those of Septimus Severus and Constantine, these
ARCH OP AUGUSTUS AT SUSA.
occupy one-half the width, and the piers the other : where the diagonals of the figure cross is the centre, from which the principal arch is struck.
The Arch of Trajan al Beneventum. — Circle struck from the centre which describes the archivolt; comprises all within it except the attic: division of width into seven, two for each pier, three for centre; attic half the height of the order.
Fig. 1055. In the foregoing examples, we have attempted to show that the beauty which belongs to form in architecture rests upon one principle based on the laws of nature, and that the first element in a good design is the proportion of the parts as well as the whole: nothing has more misled the critics upon this subject, as well as architects themselves, than implicitly following the rules laid down for drawing the orders. In treating upon the antique, they have frequently been right as far as regards the letter, but essentially wrong in the spirit. The laws of nature do not vary, nor do our organs of sense or perception, and what was apparently fit and proper in the opinions of the Greeks is equally so at the present day: in their sculptures we never find a man represented carrying more than his own weight, and such laws ought to be our guide.
After the destruction of the Roman empire, the character impressed upon architecture by the Greeks was lost: other styles arose in succession, which have been designated as Byzantine, Romanesque, Lombardic, Saxon, Norman, Saracenic, and Pointed. The five first retained the semicircular arch, and only differed in the quantity of material employed : for examples of the three first-mentioned we must refer to a work entitled « Architecture of the Middle Ages at Pisa," by Edward Cresy and G. L. Taylor, containing measurements made in 1817.
THE STYLE IN GENERAL
The question that first naturally arises is, What is Gothic or Mediæval architecture ? Although Rickman, in his essay mentioned on page 971, gave a sketch in which he wished to show the differences between Classic and Gothic architecture, the first real attempt at defining the character of Mediæval art seems to have been made by the late A. W. Pugin, who, in bis True Principles of Pointed or Christian Architecture, 1841, enunciated the fol. lowing principles, which have formed the keynote for the various works and lectures on the subject since written and delivered :
1. There should be no features about a building which are not necessary for convenience, construction, or propriety. II. All ornament should consist of enrichment of the essential construction of the building. III. The smallest detail should have a meaning or serve a purpose. IV. The construction itself should vary with the material employed. V. The design should be adapted to the material in which it is executed. VI. Pointed architecture does not conceal her construction, but beautifies it. VII. Plaster, when used for any other purpose than coating walls, is a mere modern deception. VIII. A flat roof is contrary to the spirit of the style. IX. A splayed form is necessary for piers, arches, basemoulds, strings, and copings. X. All mouldings of jambs are invariably sunk from the face of the work. XI. Large stones destroy proportion. X11. The jointing of masonry should not appear to be a regular feature. XIII. A joint in tracery should always be cut to the centre of the curve where it falls. XIV. The external and internal appearance of an edifice should be illustrative of, and in accordance with, the purpose for which it is destined. XV. It is a defect to make the two sides of a design correspondent if their purposes differ. XVI. The picturesque effect of the ancient buildings results from the ingenious methods by which the old builders overcame local and constructive difficulties. XVII. The elevation should be subservient to the plan. XVIII, Details are multiplied with the increased scale of the building.
These principles, with the addition of the subject mentioned in the next paragraph, seem to form the creed of the most advanced foreign archæologists, such as M. Viollet le Duc, for the consideration of the spirit of the style has been neglected in favour of an investigation of details by French and German writers on architecture.
“ Internal altitude," writes Pugin in the same work (p. 66.), " is a feature which would add greatly to the effect of many of our fine English churches, and I shall ever advocate its ir troduction, as it is a characteristic of foreign pointed architecture of which we can avail ourselves without violating the principles of our own peculiar style of English Christian architecture, from which I would not depart in this country on any account. I once stood on the very edge of a precipice in this respect, from which I was rescued by the advice and arguments of my respected and revered friend Dr. Rock, to whose learned researches and observations on Christian antiquities I am highly indi bted, and to whom I feel it a bounden duty to make this public acknowledgment of the great benefit I have received from his advice. Captivated by the beauties of foreign pointed architecture, I was on the verge of departing from the severity of our English style, and engrafting portions of foreign detail and arrangement. This I feel convinced would have been a failure; for although the great principles of Christian architecture were everywhere the same, each country had soine peculiar manner of developing them, and we should continue working in the same parallel lines, all contributing to the grand whole of Catholic art, but by the very variety increasing its beauties and its interest.'
This author claimed for pointed architecture the merit of its having been the only phase of art in which the “principles ” had been carried out, and is supported, with some reservations, by Viollet le Duc. Our space is too limited to discuss that assertion ; the student who desires to investigate the subject must refer to Pugin's publication for his arguments, and must guard against being captivated by the one-sided illustrations given as “contrast." For an assertion of the same general principles in regard of Classic and Modern architecture, the reader is referred to the chapter on Beauty IN ARCHITECTURE, in the present work
par. 3492, et seq.), written, we are inclined to consider, before the publication of Pugin's ropositions.
Á more strictly architectural definition of the term Gothic architecture has been deduced rom the writings of various investigators, as being that combination of art and science in building which followed the adoption, during the middle ages, of broken arches for vaults openings, and ornaments, in lieu of the previously existing arches of continuous lines The term Gothic architecture, according to such writers, does not acknowledge as its legitimate productions any structures that are point vaulted and point arched, point vaulted but not arched, point arched but not vaulted, or neither arched nor vaulted, unless they conform to rules approved by the builders in north-western Europe (and especially in England) during the middle ages. These regulations are, in effect
, nine :-1. Daylight must not fall upon any apparently horizontal plane surface, however small, except pavements, steps, seats, and tables. 11. Every arch must be moulded within a chamfer, or at least be chamfered. III. Every impost must follow the plan of the arch or arches which it receives. IV. Every pillur must be an assemblage of juxtaposed shafts or mouldings. V. Every pier must be polygonal, or at least circular in plan. VI. Every base must follow the plan of the pillar or pier to which it belongs, or at least be either polygonal (preferably octagonal), or cylindrical if under a shaft. VII. All decoration must be worked within the plane of the walling to which it beiongs, except in the cases of bases, bands, capitals, cornices, copings, and dripstones. VIII. Ruofs of bigh pitch and Aying buttresses, spires, and pinnacles, tracery and foliation, are incidental, rather than peculiar, features. IX. The continuous arch may be ex eptionally employed when it, with the rest of the building in which it occurs, exhibits submission to the preceding regulations.
These regulations were observed to the north of the Loire and of the Alps, which was the seat of what may be designated oriyinal Gothic. South of those boundaries we have tu deal with what may be designated imitatire Gothic, to which, as a matter of course, appends itself one of the two divisions, Christian and Mahomedan, of Pointed art. We take it for granted that the reader is already convinced that the Romanesque and Byzantine perfect developments of Roman construction do not become transitional to original or imitative Gothic architecture merely by the introduction of the pointed arch as a mere form, independent of the regulations above enumerated. On the contrary, they become new styles, with their own periods of transition and development; which, by those writers who do not feel that the architecture of the Mahomedans has been as consistent as that of north-western Europe, are at present considered as mere solecisms, deserving to have the epithets of pointed Romanesque and pointed Byzantine given to them.
These regulations, therefore, define the difference between Gothic and Pointed architec. ture. They exclude from the title of Gothic those branches of the transition from Ro. manesque art which, in Germany, Italy, and the Spanish peninsula, were, whatever the period might be, merely imitation Gothic; as they also exclude any branch of the pointed Byzantine school, which was employed by the Normans in Sicily, or by other Christian communities.
The readers who are desirous of considering this subject more in detail are referred to Freeman, History of Architecture, 1949, wherein Chapter I. Part II. treats upon the * Definition and Origin of Gothic Architecture;” and concludes with the observation : - We may then define Gothic architecture as a style whose main principle is verticality, is principle suggested by the pointed arch, and carried out in its accompanying details. А writer in the Archæological Journal, for February 1847, bas expressed his notion that "it would be very possible to build a thoroughly good Gothic church, taken entirely from ancient examples, without a single pointed arch throughout;” a principle which would astonish most of the talented practitioners of the present day.
An eminent amateur has written a very studied and elaborate explanation of what he considers to constitute Gothic architecture. “I believe,” says Mr. Ruskin, in Stones of Venice, Vol. II. Chap. VI., after a short inquiry into the mental power or expression, " that the characteristic or moral elements of Gothic are the following, placed in the order of their importance:- I. Savageness ; II. Changefulness; III. Naturalism; IV. Grotesqueness ; V. Rigidity; and VI. Redundance. These characters are here expressed as belonging to the building. As belonging to the builder they would be thus expressed :I. Savageness, or rudeness; II. Love of change; III. Love of nature; IV. Disturbed imagination ; V. Obstinacy;
and VI. Generosity. The withdrawal of any one, or any two, will not at once destroy the Gothic character of the building ; but the removal of a majority of them will." He then proceeds to examine them in their order; but our limited space prevents our following him word for word, and we have found it necessary to curtail some of the following paragraphs.
In defining its outward form, he states that the most striking feature is that it is composed of pointed arches. “I shall say then, in the first place, that Gothic architecture is that which uses, if possible, the pointed arch for the roof proper ;” and subsequently adds, * Our definition will stand thus : Gothic architecture is that which uses the pointed arch