The Ten Books on Architecture, 5.10.1

Vitruvius  Parallel editions

‹‹‹ Vitr. 5.9.9 | Table of Contents | Vitr. 5.10.2 ›››

Gwilt translation

10First, as warm a spot as possible is to be selected, that is to say, one sheltered from the north and north-east. The hot and tepid baths are to receive their light from the winter west; but, if the nature of the place prevent that, at all events from the south, because the hours of bathing are principally from noon to evening. Care must be taken that the warm baths of the women and men adjoin, and have the same aspect; in which case the same furnace and vessels will serve both. The caldrons over the furnaces are to be three in number, one for hot water, another for tepid water, and a third for cold water: and they must be so arranged, that the hot water which runs out of the heated vessel, may be replaced by an equal quantity from the tepid vessel, which in like manner is supplied from the cold vessel, and that the arched cavities in which they stand may be heated by one fire.

Morgan translation

10In the first place, the warmest possible situation must be selected; that is, one which faces away from the north and northeast. The rooms for the hot and tepid baths should be lighted from the southwest, or, if the nature of the situation prevents this, at all events from the south, because the set time for bathing is principally from midday to evening. We must also see to it that the hot bath rooms in the women’s and men’s departments adjoin each other, and are situated in the same quarter; for thus it will be possible that the same furnace should serve both of them and their fittings. Three bronze cauldrons are to be set over the furnace, one for hot, another for tepid, and the third for cold water, placed in such positions that the amount of water which flows out of the hot water cauldron may be replaced from that for tepid water, and in the same way the cauldron for tepid water may be supplied from that for cold. The arrangement must allow the semi-cylinders for the bath basins to be heated from the same furnace.