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being placed for the use of the workman with clearness and precision. All the rules by which working drawings are wrought are dependent on the matter in this work already communicated to the reader, excepting only those details of the orders, and some other matters, which will be found in Book III. But we shall here, nevertheless, briefly replace before him the leading principles whereon working drawings are to be prepared. And first, he is to recollect that solids are only represented by the faces opposite to the eye; secondly, that the surfaces by which solids are enclosed are of two sorts, that is, rectilinear or curvilinear. Those bodies in which these properties are combined may be divided into three sorts: 1. Those which are bounded by plane surfaces, such as prisms, pyramids, and generally all straight work. 2. Those in which there is a mixture of straight and curved lines, as cylinders, cones, or portions of them, voussoirs of vaulting, and the like; and 3. Those solids wherein a double flexure occurs, as in the sphere, spheroid, and in many cases of voussoirs. 2488. We should, however, unnecessarily use the space allotted to us by further entering on these matters, on which enough has been already said in previous sections. The plain truth is, that working drawings are to be so made for the use of the artificer as to embody on a scale, by which no mistake ought to occur, all the information which this work has already given on construction, and that which follows in the more refined view of architecture as a fine art. 2489. In works whose magnitude is not of the first class, the drawing of every part, both in construction and in those which involve the work as one of art, every portion should be given of the full size whereof it is proposed to be executed. Where the building is large, as also the parts, this may be dispensed with ; but then it becomes (the detail being drawn on a smaller but fully intelligible scale) the duty of the architect to see that the drawings he furnishes are faithfully drawn out to the full size by the artificer on proper moulds. Often it is useful, never, indeed, otherwise, to offer up, as it is called, small portions of mouldings on the different parts of a building, to ascertain what the effect may be likely to be at the heights fixed for their real places. In these matters he should leave no means untried to satisfy himself of the effect which what he has first planned in small is likely to produce when executed. 2490. We have presumed that the architect is so far educated as to have acquired a full knowledge of all that rules can teach, and that, strictly speaking, he has proportioned his work in conformity with them. Still, in real practice, there are constantly so many circumstances which concur in making it almost necessary to depart from established rules, such as surrounding buildings, where it is of importance to give predominance to a part for the purpose of making it a feature, that the expedient of trying a portion of the proposed detail in the place it is actually to occupy, is a matter that we would advise every architect to adopt after he has made and studied the working drawings whereof we treat. 2491. We have not alluded to the matters of carpentry and joinery, in which it is often necessary to give the artificer information by means of working drawings; but the methods of trussing in carpentry, and of framing in joinery, often require working drawings. What has already been exhibited under those heads (2031, et seq.) will prevent his being left uninstructed, and will, moreover, have afforded such information as to prepare him, by the exercise of his own ingenuity, for such cases as may not have been specially given in the examples herein contained. We therefore here close our observations under this section by an intimation to the student, that the proper preparation of working drawings for the use of the artificer tests his acquaintance with the theory and practice of the art, and is of the utmost importance to the pocket of the employer from whom he receives a commission, whereof it is his duty as a gentleman never to lose sight.
PRACTICE OF ARCHITECTURE.
THE PRINCIPAL PARTS OF A BUILDING.
BrauTY IN ARchitectu RE.
2492. The existence of arehitecture as a fine art is dependent on erpression, or the faculty of representing, by means of lines, words, or other media, the inventions which the architect conceives suitable to the end proposed. That end is twofold; to be useful, and to connect the use with a pleasurable sensation in the spectator of the invention. In eloquence and poetry the end is to instruct, and such is the object of the higher and historical classes of painting; but architecture, though the elder of the arts, cannot claim the rank due to painting and poetry, albeit its end is so much more useful and necessary to mankind. In the sciences the end is utility and instruction, but in them the latter is not of that high moral importance, however useful, which allows them for a moment to come into competition with the great arts of painting, poetry, and eloquence. It will be seen that we here make no allusion to the lower branches of portrait and landseape painting, but to that great moral and religious end which fired the mind of Michael Angelo in the Sistine Chapel, and of Raffaelle Sanzio in the Stanze of the Vatican and in the Cartoons. Above the lower branches of painting just mentioned, the art whereof we treat occupies an exalted station. In it though the chief end is to produce an useful result, yet the expression on which it depends, in common with the other great arts, brings each within the scope of those laws which govern generally the fine arts whose object is beauty. Beauty, whatever difference of opinion may exist on the means necessary to produce it, is by all admitted to be the result of every perfection whereof an object is susceptible, such perfections being altogether dependent on the agreeable proportions subsistent between the several parts, and those between the several parts and the whole. The power or faculty of inventing is called genius. By it the mind is capable of conceiving and of expressing its conceptions. Taste, which is capable of being acquired, is the natural sensation of a mind refined by art. It guides genius in discerning, embracing, and producing beauty. Here we may for a moment pause to inquire what may be considered a standard of taste, and that cannot be better done than in the words used on the subject by Hume (Essay Xxiii.): “The great variety of tastes,” says that author, “as well as of opinion, which prevails in the world, is too obvious not to have fallen under every one's observation. Men of the most confined knowledge are able to remark a difference of taste in the narrow circle of their acquaintance, even where the persons have been educated under the same government and have early imbibed the same prejudices. But those who can enlarge their view to contemplate distant nations and remote ages are still more surprised at the great inconsistence and contrariety. We are apt to call barbarous whatever departs widely from our own taste and apprehension, but soon find the epithet of reproach retorted on us, and the highest arrogance and self-conceit is at last startled on observing an equal assurance on all sides, and scruples, amidst such a contest of sentiment, to pronounce positively in its own favour.” True as are the observations of this philosopher in respect of a standard of taste, we shall nevertheless attempt to guide the reader to some notion of a standard of taste in architecture.
2493. There has lately grown into use in the arts a silly pedantic term under the name of AEsthetics, founded on the Greek word 'Aurórrucos, one which means having the power of perception by means of the senses; said to be the science whereby the first principles in all the arts are derived, from the effect which certain combinations have on the mind as connected with nature and reason: it is, however, one of the metaphysical and useless additions to nomenclature in the arts, in which the German writers abound, and in its application to architecture of least value; because in that art form is from construction so limited by necessity, that sentiment can scarcely be said to be further connected with the art than is necessary for keeping the subordinate parts of the same character as the greater ones under which they are combined; and, further, for thereby avoiding incongruities. 2494. It is well known that all art in relation to nature is subject to those laws by which nature herself is governed, and if we were certain that those rules of art which resulted from reason were necessarily and actually connected with sensation, there would be no difficulty in framing a code of laws whereon the principles of any art might be firmly founded. “Principles in art," as well defined by Payne Knight, “are no other than the trains of ideas which arise in the mind of the artist out of a just and adequate consideration of all those local, temporary, or accidental circumstances upon which their propriety or impropriety, their congruity or incongruity, wholly depend." By way of illustrating the observation just made, we will merely allude to that maxim in architecture which inculcates the propriety of placing openings over openings and piers over piers, disallowing, in other words, the placing a pier over an opening without the exhibition of such preparation below as shall satisfy the mind that security has been consulted. There can be no doubt that a departure from the maxim creates an unpleasant sensation in the mind, which would seem to be immediately and intimately connected with the laws of reason; but there is great difficulty in satisfying one's self of the precise manner in which this operates on the mind, without a recurrence to the primitive types in architecture, and thence pursuing the inquiry. But in the other arts the types are found in nature herself, and hence in them no difficulty occurs in the establishment of laws, because we have that same nature whereto reference may be made. We shall have to return to this subject in the section on the Orders of Architecture, to which we must refer the reader, instead of pursuing the subject here. 2495. Throughout nature beauty seems to follow the adoption of forms suitable to the expression of the end. In the human form there is no part, considered in respect to the end for which it was formed by the great Creator, that in the eye of the artist, or rather, in this case the better judge, the anatomist, is not admirably calculated for the function it has to discharge; and without the accurate representation of those parts in discharge of their several functions, no artist by means of mere expression, in the ordinary meaning of that word, can hope for celebrity. This arises from an inadequate representation having the appearance of incompetency to discharge the given functions; or, in other words, they appear unfit to answer the end. 2496. We are thus led to the consideration of fitness, which, after all, will be found to be the basis of all proportion, if not proportion itself. Alison, in his Essay on Taste, says, “I apprehend that the beauty of proportion in forms is to be ascribed to this cause,” (fitness) “and that certain proportions affect us with the emotion of beauty, not from any original capacity in such qualities to excite this emotion, but from their being expressive to us of the fitness of the parts to the end designed.” Hogarth, who well understood the subject, concurs with Alison in considering that the emotion of pleasure which proportion affords does not resemble the pleasure of sensation, but rather that feeling of satisfaction arising from means properly adapted to their end. In his Analysis of Beauty that great painter places the question in its best and truest light, when, speaking of chairs and tables, or other common objects of furniture, he considers them merely as fitted from their proportions to the end they have to serve. In the same manner, says Alison, “the effect of disproportion seems to me to bear no resemblance to that immediate painful sensation which we feel from any disagreeable sound or smell, but to resemble that kind of dissatisfaction which we feel when means are unfitted to their end. Thus the disproportion of a chair or table does not affect us with a simple sensation of pain, but with a very observe. able emotion of dissatisfaction or discontent, from the unsuitableness of their construction for the purposes the objects are intended to serve. Of the truth of this every man must judge from his own experience.” We cannot refrain from continuing our extracts from this most intelligent author. “The habit,” he says, “which we have in a great many familiar cases of immediately conceiving this fitness from the mere appearance of the form, leads us to imagine, as it is expressed in common language, that we determine proportion by the eye, and this quality of fitness is so immediately expressed by the material form, that we are sensible of little difference between such judgments and a mere determination of sense; yet every man must have observed that in those cases where either the object is not familiar to us or the construction intricate our judgment is by no means speedy, and that we never discover the proportion until we previously discover the principle of the machine or the means by which the end is produced.” 2497. The nature of the terms in which we converse shows the dependence of proportion on fitness, for it is the sign of the quality. The natural answer of a person asked why the proportion of any building or machine pleased him, would be, because the object by such proportion was fit or proper for its end. Indeed, proportion is but a synonyme of fitness, for if the form be well contrived, and the several parts be properly adjusted to their end, we immediately express our opinion that it is well proportioned. 2498. There is, however, between proportion and fitness, a distinction drawn by our author, which must be noticed. “Fitness expresses the relation of the whole of the means to the end; proportion, the proper relation of a part or parts to their end.” But the distinction is too refined to be of importance in our consideration; for the due proportion of parts is simply that particular form and dimension which from experience has been found best suited to the object in view. “Proportion,” therefore continues Alison, “is to be considered as applicable only to forms composed of parts, and to express the relation of propriety between any part or parts and the end they are destined to serve.” 2499. Forms are susceptible of many divisions, and consequently proportions; but these are only subordinate to the great end of the whole. Thus, for instance, in the constantly varying forms of fashion, say in a chair or table, the merely ornamental parts may bear no relation to the general fitness of the form, but they must be so contrived as to avoid unpleasant sensation, and not to interfere with the general fitness. If we do not understand the nature of its fitness, we cannot judge of the proportion properly. “No man,” says Alison, “ever presumes to speak of the proportions of a machine of the use of which he is ignorant.” When, however, we become acquainted with the use or purpose of a particular class of forms, we at the same time acquire a knowledge which brings under our view and acquaintance a larger circle of agreeable proportions than the rest of the world understand; and those parts which by others are regarded with indifference, we contemplate with pleasure, from our superior knowledge of their fitness for the end designed. The proportions of an object must not in strength be carried beyond what is required for fitness, for in that case they will degenerate into clumsiness, whilst elegance, on the contrary, is the result of the nicest adjustment of proportion. 2500. Fitness cannot exist in any architectural object without equilibrium in all the parts as well as the whole. The most complete and perfect notion that can be conceived of stability, which is the result of equilibrium, may be derived from the contemplation of an horizontal straight line ; whilst, on the contrary, of instability nothing seems more expressive than a vertical straight line. These being, then, assumed as the extremes of stability and instability, by carrying out the gradations between the two extremes, we may, extending in two parts the vertical line, obtain various forms, more or less expressive of stability as they approach or recede from the horizontal line. In fig. 860. we have, standing on the same base, the general form of the lofty Gothic spire; the pleasing, solid, and enduring form of the Egyptian pyramid; and that of the flat Grecian pediment: which last, though in its inclination adjusted on different grounds, which have been examined in so – to Book II. Chap. III. subsect. 2027, et seq., is an eminent instance of stability. Fig. 860. The spire, from its height and small base, seems to possess but a tottering equilibrium compared with the others. 2501. Stability is obviously dependent on the laws of gravitation, on which, under the division of statics, not only the architect, but the painter and sculptor, should bestow considerable attention. We cannot for a moment suppose it will be disputed that at least one of the causes of the beauty of the pyramid is a satisfactory impression on the mind of the state of rest or stability it possesses. Rest, repose, stability, balance, all meaning nearly the same thing, are then the very essential ingredients in fitness; and therefore, in architectural subjects, instability, or the appearance of it, is fatal to beauty. Illustrations of this exist in the famous Asinelli and Garisendi towers at Bologna, and at Pisa in the celebrated leaning Campanile. 2502. It may be objected to what we have written, that fitness alone will not account for the pleasure which arises in the contemplation of what are called the orders of architecture, and Alison seems very much to doubt whether there be not some other cause of beauty. It will, however, be our business to show how the ancients, their inventors, considered principally their fitness; and upon these grounds to show, moreover, how the proportions in ancient examples varied, and may be still further varied, without infringing upon the principles which guided them in the original invention. Payne Knight has well observed, “that the fundamental error of imitators in all the arts is, that they servilely copy the effects which they see produced, instead of supplying and adopting the principles which guided the original artists in producing them ; wherefore they disregard all those local, temporary, or accidental circumstances upon which their propriety or impropriety, their congruity or incongruity, wholly depend.” “Grecian temples, Gothic abbeys, and feudal castles were all well adapted to their respective uses, circumstances, and situations; the distribution of the parts subservient to the purposes of the whole; and the ornaments and decorations suited to the character of the parts, and to the manners, habits, and employments of the persons who were to o: them : but the house of an English noblex 2
man of the 18th or 19th century is neither a Grecian temple, a Gothic abbey, nor a feudal castle; and if the style of distribution or decoration of either be employed in it, such changes and modifications should be admitted as may adapt it to existing circumstances, otherwise the scale of its exactitude becomes that of its incongruity, and the deviation from principle proportioned to the fidelity of imitation." This is but another application of the principle of fitness which we have above considered, the chief foundation of beauty in the art. We have shown how it is dependent on stability as a main source of fitness, and here subjoin some maxims which will lead the student to fitness in his designs, and prevent him from running astray, if he but bring himself to the belief that they are reasonable, and founded upon incontestable grounds, which we can assure him they are. First. Let that which is the stronger part always bear the weaker. Second. Let solidity be always real, and not brought to appear so by artifice. Third. Let nothing be introduced into a composition whose presence is not justified by necessity. Fourth. Let unity and variety be so used as not to destroy each other. Fifth. Let nothing be introduced that is not subordinate to the whole. Sixth. Let symmetry and regularity so reign as to combine with order and solidity. Seventh. Let the proportions be of the simplest sort. Eighth. Let him recollect that nothing is beautiful which has not some good and useful end. lf, after having made his design, he will scrupulously test it by these maxims seriatin, and will strike out what is discordant with the tenor of them, he will have overcome a few of the difficulties which attend the commencement of his career. 2503. We are not of the same opinion with those who, on a geometrical elevation of a building, draw lines from its apex, which, bounding the principal parts of the outline, find a pyramidal form, and thence infer beauty of general outline. If those who favour such a notion will but reflect for a moment, they must see that this cannot be a test of its effect, inasmuch as the construction of a geometrical elevation of any edifice supposes it to be viewed at an infinite distance, whereas, in fact, it is most generally viewed under angles which would puzzle the most learned architect, without full investigation, to discover the primary lines which they assume to be the causes of its beauty. The obscurations and foreshortenings that take place are at points of view near the building itself; and, however judicious it may be to form the general masses in obedience to such a system, so as to produce an effect in the distance that may be in accordance with the principle, it would be extremely dangerous to lay the principle down as a law. The finest view of St. Paul's is perhaps a little east of Fetter Lane, on the northern side of Fleet Street; but it would puzzle any one to discover its pyramidal form from that point of view. 2504. The beauty of the proportions of architecture in the interiors of buildings is dependent on those which govern the exteriors. Much has been said on proportions of rooms, which, hereafter, we shall have to notice: we mean the proportions of their length to their breadth and height. That these are important, we cannot deny ; but whether the beauty of a room is altogether dependent on the due adjustment of these, we have some doubts; that is, under certain limits. We here address ourselves more particularly to that fitness which, in ornamenting a ceiling, for example, requires that the beams which appear below the general surface should invariably fall over piers, and that in this respect corresponding sides should be uniform. In the study of this point, Inigo Jones is the great English master who has left the student the most valuable examples of this branch of the art. 2505. It may, perhaps, be useful to observe generally that the bare proportions of the interiors of apartments depend on the purposes for which they are intended, and according to these we seek immediately for the expression of their fitness. This point, therefore, involves on the part of the architect so general an acquaintance with the most refined habits of his employers, that we should be almost inclined to agree with Vitruvius on the multifarious qualifications necessary to constitute a good one. Certain it is that no instructions he can receive for building a mansion will qualify him without a great acquaintance with the habits of the upper classes of society. 2506, We have already stated that it is hopeless to arrive at a fixed standard of taste. That considered worthy of the appellation will not be so considered in another. “The sable Africans," says Knight, quoting from Mungo Park, “view with pity and contempt the marked deformity of the Europeans, whose mouths are compressed, their noses pinched, their cheeks shrunk, their hair rendered lank and flimsy, their bodies lengthened and emaciated, and their skins unnaturally bleached by shade and seclusion, and the baneful influence of a humid climate.” In the countries of Europe, where some similarity of taste may be expected, the tyranny of fashion, no less than that of habit and circumstance, has, and always will have, its influence on the arts. Within the short space of even a few months we have seen what is called the renaissance style of architecture imported from France, drawing into its vortex all classes of persons, many of them among the higher