The Ten Books on Architecture, 5.12.7

Vitruvius  Parallel editions

‹‹‹ Vitr. 5.12.6 | Table of Contents | Vitr. 6.0.1 ›››

Gwilt translation

7When this is completed, the arsenals are to be constructed chiefly with a northern aspect; for if they are to the south, the heat will generate and nourish the rot, the worm, the ship worm, and other noxious insects; and timber should be sparingly used in these buildings on account of fire. No rule can be given for the size, but they must be suited to receive the largest ships, so that, if drawn ashore, there may be plenty of room for them. In this book, as far as it has occurred to me, I have treated of the public buildings necessary for the use of a city: in that following, I shall treat of the convenience and symmetry of private houses.

Morgan translation

7When all this is finished, the general rule for shipyards will be to build them facing the north. Southern exposures from their heat produce rot, the wood worm, shipworms, and all sorts of other destructive creatures, and strengthen and keep them alive. And these buildings must by no means be constructed of wood, for fear of fire. As for their size, no definite limit need be set, but they must be built to suit the largest type of ship, so that if even larger ships are hauled up, they may find plenty of room there.

I have described in this book the construction and completion of all that I could remember as necessary for general use in the public places of cities. In the following book I shall consider private houses, their conveniences, and symmetrical proportions.