The Ten Books on Architecture, 3.2

Vitruvius  translated by Morris Hicky Morgan

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Classification of Temples

2There are certain elementary forms on which the general aspect of a temple depends. First there is the temple in antis, or ναος ἑν παραστἁσιν as it is called in Greek; then the prostyle, amphiprostyle, peripteral, pseudodipteral, dipteral, and hypaethral. These different forms may be described as follows.

2It will be a temple in antis when it has antae carried out in front of the walls which enclose the cella, and in the middle, between the antae, two columns, and over them the pediment constructed in the symmetrical proportions to be described later in this work. An example will be found at the Three Fortunes, in that one of the three which is nearest the Colline gate.

3The prostyle is in all respects like the temple in antis, except that at the corners, opposite the antae, it has two columns, and that it has architraves not only in front, as in the case of the temple in antis, but also one to the right and one to the left in the wings. An example of this is the temple of Jove and Faunus in the Island of the Tiber.

4The amphiprostyle is in all other respects like the prostyle, but has besides, in the rear, the same arrangement of columns and pediment.

5A temple will be peripteral that has six columns in front and six in the rear, with eleven on each side including the corner columns. Let the columns be so placed as to leave a space, the width of an intercolumniation, all round between the walls and the rows of columns on the outside, thus forming a walk round the cella of the temple, as in the cases of the temple of Jupiter Stator by Hermodorus in the Portico of Metellus, and the Marian temple of Honour and Valour constructed by Mucius, which has no portico in the rear.

6The pseudodipteral is so constructed that in front and in the rear there are in each case eight columns, with fifteen on each side, including the corner columns. The walls of the cella in front and in the rear should be directly over against the four middle columns. Thus there will be a space, the width of two intercolumniations plus the thickness of the lower diameter of a column, all round between the walls and the rows of columns on the outside. There is no example of this in Rome, but at Magnesia there is the temple of Diana by Hermogenes, and that of Apollo at Alabanda by Mnesthes.

7The dipteral also is octastyle in both front and rear porticoes, but it has two rows of columns all round the temple, like the temple of Quirinus, which is Doric, and the temple of Diana at Ephesus, planned by Chersiphron, which is Ionic.

8The hypaethral is decastyle in both front and rear porticoes. In everything else it is the same as the dipteral, but inside it has two tiers of columns set out from the wall all round, like the colonnade of a peristyle. The central part is open to the sky, without a roof. Folding doors lead to it at each end, in the porticoes in front and in the rear. There is no example of this sort in Rome, but in Athens there is the octastyle in the precinct of the Olympian.

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