The Ten Books on Architecture, 6.6.1

Vitruvius  Parallel editions

‹‹‹ Vitr. 6.5.3 | Table of Contents | Vitr. 6.6.2 ›››

Gwilt translation

6First of all the salubrity of the situation must be examined, according to the rules given in the first book for the position of a city, and the site may be then determined. Their size should be dependent on the extent of the land attached to them, and its produce. The courts and their dimensions will be determined by the number of cattle, and the yokes of oxen employed. The kitchen is to be placed in the warmest part of the court; adjoining to this are placed the stalls for oxen, with the mangers at the same time towards the fire and towards the east, for oxen with their faces to the light and fire do not become rough-coated. Hence it is that husbandmen, who are altogether ignorant of the nature of aspects, think that oxen should look towards no other region than that of the east.

Morgan translation

6In the first place, inspect the country from the point of view of health, in accordance with what is written in my first book, on the building of cities, and let your farmhouses be situated accordingly. Their dimensions should depend upon the size of the farm and the amount of produce. Their courtyards and the dimensions thereof should be determined by the number of cattle and the number of yokes of oxen that will need to be kept therein. Let the kitchen be placed on the warmest side of the courtyard, with the stalls for the oxen adjoining, and their cribs facing the kitchen fire and the eastern quarter of the sky, for the reason that oxen facing the light and the fire do not get rough-coated. Even peasants wholly without knowledge of the quarters of the sky believe that oxen ought to face only in the direction of the sunrise.