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History of Architecture I
Ancient Greek Architecture
Lecturer : Arch Ayanle Omar
Outline
 Historical Background
• Location and period
• Social characteristics and beliefs
 Architecture of the Civilization
• Greek Orders
• Temple Architecture
• Civic Architecture
 Greek City Planning and Design
• Greek Architecture in Athens
 Architectural Characteristics
• Buildings and other architectural elements
• Building materials, construction and technologies
• Architectural Organizing principles
Ancient Greek Architecture
Outline of Lecture
–Historical Background
• Location and period
•Social characteristics and beliefs
Historical Background
Historical Background
Location
• Greek civilization occurred
in the area around the
Greek mainland, on a
peninsula that extends into
the Mediterranean Sea
• It started in cities on the
Greek mainland and on
islands in the Aegean Sea
• Towards the later or
Hellenistic period, Greek
civilization spread to other
far away places including
Asia Minor and Northern
Africa
Historical Background
Location
• Most of the Greek
mainland was rocky and
barren and therefore bad
for agriculture
• Most Greeks therefore
lived along the coastline or
on islands where the soil
was good for farming
• The Aegean and
Mediterranean Seas
provided a means of
communication and trade
with other places
Historical Background
Period
• The period of ancient Greek history can
be divided into four as follows:
– 1100 B. C. – 750 B. C. Greek Dark Ages
– 750 B. C. – 500 B. C. Archaic Period
– 5000 B. C. – 323 B. C. Classical Period
– 323 B. C. – 147 B. C. Hellenistic Period
• The classical and archaic period are
sometimes collectively referred to as
Hellenic period
Historical Background
Social Characteristics & Beliefs
• Introduction
– Greek civilization is the first major civilization in Europe
– Greek civilization along with the Roman civilization are
said to be at the root of current western civilization
– They two are referred to as “classical” cultures because
of their recognition as the root of western civilization
– Greek and Roman architecture are also referred to as
classical architecture
– Greek civilization started with the mingling of two Greek
cultures, the Dorian and the Ionian to create a single
Hellenic culture
– The two developed a sedentary agricultural and
commercial society that ultimately gave birth to the
concept of the city state
Historical Background
Social Characteristics & Beliefs
• Societal Organization- The city state
– The ancient Greeks lived in self governing city-states
called "polis."
– The city-states were small, independent communities
which were male-dominated and bound together by
race.
– The ancient Greek world was made up of hundreds of
these independent city states
– The polis started as a defensible area to which
farmers of an area could retreat in the event of an
attack as in the Mycenaean citadels
– Over time, towns grew around these defensible
areas.
Historical Background
Social Characteristics & Beliefs
• Societal Organization- The city state
– Every polis was different from another, even though
there were similarities between them
– They were all bounded by common language and
religious beliefs
– They all made efforts to preserve their own unique
identity, and each city state believed that their state
was better than all the other states
– The city states often fought with one another.
– The city state of Athens on the Greek mainland was
among the most famous and powerful of the city
states
Historical Background
Social Characteristics & Beliefs
• Societal Organization- The city state
– It was a major center for learning and the arts.
– When city-states were first formed, they were ruled by
a few wealthy men.
– However, they gradually moved towards democracy.
– Athens developed an early form of democracy
– How did they make laws? Only men who were born in
Athens were allowed to vote.
– They did this at public assemblies where upper class
citizens discussed and adopted laws that might
benefit Athens.
Historical Background
Social Characteristics & Beliefs
• Social Organization And Responsibility
– The scale of the polis was small.
– The philosophers Aristotle and Plato believed that the
polis should be of a small size, so that members know
each other personally
– The ideal size of a city state was fixed at 5040 males
by Plato
– Citizens in any polis were related by blood and so
family ties were very strong.
– Membership of the polis was hereditary and could not
be passed to persons outside the family
Historical Background
Social Characteristics & Beliefs
• Religious Belief
– The ancient Greeks were polytheistic, believing in
many different gods and goddesses
– The God were regarded as all powerful but similar to
human beings in their passions, desires and appetite
– All aspect of life was under the protection of the gods,
and they controlled everything, from the waves in the
ocean to the winner of a race.
– All the gods and goddesses had specific roles,
controlling one or two major aspects of life
– Zeus was, for example, the supreme leader of the
gods, Hermes was the messenger of the gods, and
Poseidon was the god of the sea
Historical Background
Social Characteristics & Beliefs
• Place of Worship
– Temples were the focus of Greek religious worships
– Temples were usually built in the cities of the Gods
called “Acropolis”
– Temples were built in every town and city for one or
more god or goddess
– The temples were considered as offerings to the gods
– Each community was therefore under pressure to
make them beautiful as possible
Historical Background
Social Characteristics & Beliefs
• Place of Worship
– The temples were also considered as the house of
the gods
– They were not designed for functional use
– They usually consist of a large open hall called
sanctuary where the statue of the god to whom it is
dedicated is kept
– The temples were the places for routine festivals to
the gods
– The festivals included plays, music, dancing, and then
a parade to the temple where they made sacrifices
and had a feast.
– Animals were usually sacrificed as a gift to the gods
Historical Background
Social Characteristics & Beliefs
• Architecture in service of religion
– Architecture in Greece Started in the Service of
Religions
– Temples were the abode of gods
– The Greeks regarded beauty as an attribute of the
gods and the conscious pursuit of beauty as a
religious exercise.
– The most important task for architects was how to
make the temple beautiful
– The search for ways to express architectural beauty
made the Greek civilization among the first to have
established ideals of beauty
Historical Background
Social Characteristics & Beliefs
• Architecture in service of religion
– The Greeks convinced themselves that the secrets of
beauty lie in proportions
– Man was viewed by the Greeks as having the most
ideal proportions and is the measure of all things
– Greek developed a system of building proportion that
reflected those of the human body
– With time, they refined their system of building
proportion, and developed the classical Greek orders
which we will soon explore
Historical Background
Social Characteristics & Beliefs
• Architecture in service of religion
– The principal building material of the ancient
Greeks was stone
– Clay and timber were also used
– Timber was used mostly for roofing and its
scarcity coupled with limitations in its length
imposed restrictions on the width of buildings
– Temples were the main building type and it
was used as a decoration element by every
city
Historical Background
Social Characteristics & Beliefs
• Architecture in service of religion
– Greek society also made buildings other than temples
– These evolved in response to changes in need with
time
– The most common buildings are amphitheaters,
council halls, public fountains and theatres, gymnasia,
schools and libraries, public baths and lavatories
– As these civic buildings emerge, treatment once
reserved for temple was extended to them even
though on a less grander scale than in the temples
Historical Background
Social Characteristics & Beliefs
• Architecture in service of religion
– Greek construction was of a simple post and lintel or
trabeated construction
– Their ground plans were always very simple, usually
rectangular
– With a combination of simple ground plans and
trabeated construction, they were able to create
amazing buildings
– Buildings were constructed by skilled craftsmen who
were in demand and traveled from one state to the
other for construction work
– Designs were done on the ground by measuring out
the foundation
Historical Background
Social Characteristics & Beliefs
• Architecture in service of religion
– Blocks of stone were ordered from the quarry
– Blocks were given initial preparation on the building
site
– Blocks were large and retained in position by their
own weight; it was not necessary to fix them together
in any way
– Roofs were of wood beams and rafters cut to square
shapes with tile roof
– Carvings and other decorative work were finished
when the building is completed
Historical Background
Social Characteristics & Beliefs
• Other Activities and Achievements
– Greek society contributed to the earliest development
of science and scientific inquiry
– Greeks attempted to explain the world through the
laws of nature.
– Greeks found out that the earth was round and A
Greek person is credited as being the first to measure
the circumference of the Earth
– The Greeks also made significant contributions to the
arts, particularly in sculpture and painting
Historical Background
Social Characteristics & Beliefs
• Other Activities and Achievements
– They wrote many stories and plays that continue to
be performed today.
– The ancient Greeks were huge sports fans and sports
was considered a part of religion
– Every four years, the Greeks held the Olympic Games
in the stadium at Olympia.
– The best athletes in Greece competed in different
events
– Because the games were religious, anyone who was
caught cheating during the games was never allowed
to compete again
End of Lecture
Module 2
Ancient Greek Architecture
Outline of Lecture
• Lecture 3
–Architecture of the Civilization
•Greek Orders
•Temple Architecture
•Civic Architecture
Architecture of the Civilization
The Orders
Introduction
• Refer to the entire set of form
that makes up the principal
elevation of a temple.
• Composed of a base, an
upright column or support with
its capital, and the horizontal
entablature.
• All the parts of an order are
proportionally derived from the
size of the base of the column.
• It determines all aspects of the
elevation of a building
including its shape and the
arrangement and proportion of
its parts
The Orders
Introduction
• Greeks are credited with
originating the three orders
of the classical language of
architecture, Doric, Ionic
and Corinthian.
• Columns were understood
by the Greeks to be
anthropomorphic or
representative of the body
of a human
• The base suggests the feet,
the shaft the torso and the
capital the head.
The Orders
Introduction
• Each order had its own
conventions about the
design of the entablature
• The entablature is divided
into three sections; the
cornices, the frieze and the
architrave
• According the rules of
classical architecture, the
entablature should always
be divisible into these
three zones
The Doric Order
• Doric columns are
the heaviest in
appearance
• The capital is plain.
• The shaft is thick –
though it loses some
of its mass over
time.
• There is no base.
The Ionic Order
• These have greater
elegance.
• The capital has
distinctive volutes.
• The shaft is thinner
than its Doric
equivalent.
• A base is apparent.
The Corinthian Order
• This is also a tall,
elegant form.
• The capital has
distinctive acanthus
leaf decoration.
• A base is also
employed.
The Orders
Column Construction
• Do you wonder how the
columns of the Greek
orders were constructed?
• Each column was made
up of several drums of
marble
• They were held together
by a stone peg in the
center
• The stones were
assembled and put
together in their rough
form
The Orders
Column Construction
• The capital was also
carved out
• After they were put
together, the grooves
called flutes were cut
up and down the
shaft of the column
and all around it
• This gave the column
its slim and elegant
look
Temple Architecture
Introduction
• The most important Greek
building was the temple
• The temple had the finest
building materials and the
richest decoration.
• It was also the most complex of
architectural form.
• It was designed not to hold
worshippers, but as symbolic
dwelling of the gods
• The temple is usually
rectangular in plan
• It is lifted on a podium, and in
plan has colonnades on all its
external sides
Temple Architecture; Introduction
• The number of columns is always
even to allow the location of the
entrance in the center; temples
with odd number of columns are
uncommon
• Temples with 2 columns in front
are diastyle, 4-tetrastyle, 6-
hexastyle, 8-octastyle and 10-
decastyle
• Greek temples usually have twice
the number of columns in front
plus one by the side; A hexastyle
temple =six columns in front &
thirteen on side
Temple Architecture; Introduction
• Colonnades define a portico around the temple
• The temple building is made up of four walls
enclosing a rectangular space called the naos or
sanctuary
• This was the house of the god to whom the
temple is dedicated
• The interior rectangular space of the naos is
framed by a pair of colonnades on the long side
creating a central processional space
• At the head of the processional space is the
statue of the god to whom the temple is
dedicated
• The temple interior was generally dark, with only
the entrance as a source of light
History-of-Architecture-I.pptx greek.pptx
Temple Architecture; Introduction
• The temple always faced east so
that the rising sun would light the
statues inside
• Temples were designed to be
admired from the outside rather
than used
• The Greek temple is believed to
originate from the Mycenaean
megaron
• From the megaron, it went
through several stages of
evolution as shown in the
diagram
• By 500 BC, the final form of the
Greek temple had emerged
Temple Architecture
Doric Temple
• The Doric temple is based
on the Doric order
• Both the Doric order and
temple went through a
simultaneous process of
evolution
• The Basilica at Paestum
550 BC is an example of
early Doric temple
• It was built during the
archaic period of Greek
civilization
Temple Architecture
Doric Temple
• The columns on the front
are 9, while on the sides
they are 18
• The Doric columns appear
heavy in comparison with
later temples
• The columns have a bulge,
pointing to the practice of
optical correction or
entasis by the time of its
construction
• The capitals are also huge,
heavy and very wide
Doric Temple
Temple of Aphaia at Aegina
• The Temple of Aphaia at
Aegina 490 BC is a later
temple than the Basilica
at Paestum
• Temple of Aphaia is
much less heavy than
Paestum
• The entablature is less
thick
• The columns are slimmer
with less entasis or bulge
• The capitals are also
smaller
Doric Temple
Temple of Aphaia at Aegina
• This temple is hexastyle but
has only 12 flanking columns-
early temple
• The interior columns are
divided into a row of two
columns separated by an
architrave
• This allowed the designers to
avoid using columns with a
large diameter
• The temple has triangular
pediment on n the Eastern
and Western sides decorated
with stories from Greek myths
Doric Temples
Temple of Hera Argiva at Paestum
• The Temple of Hera Argiva
(or Neptune) at Paestum
460 BC was built later than
the Temple of Aphaia
• It is one of the best
preserved of all Greek
temples
• It is more mature in its
proportions than all the
others examined
• The columns are 8.8 meters
high and about 4.3 times
their lower diameter
Doric Temples
Temple of Hera Argiva at Paestum
• The temple is hexastyle but
with 24 columns on its flank
• It also has a double row of
columns in the interior, and
divided into two separated
by a stone architrave
• The most perfect of the
Doric temples is the
Parthenon; We will examine
this temple later
Ionic Temples
Introduction
• Ionic temples were built using
the Ionic order
• The most famous of the Ionic
temples is the temple of
Artemis at Ephesus
• It was considered one of the
seven wonders of the ancient
World
• It was commissioned by
Alexander the Great and was
believed to have been built
and destroyed several times
• Unfortunately the temple has
not survived to the present
time
Ionic Temples
Introduction
• There are also
uncertainties about its
arrangement in plan
• The temple stands on a
platform 2.7 meters high
• It had 36 columns in its
front and they had an
additional relief sculpture
at the base
• The best surviving Ionic
temples is the Temple of
Athena located at the
Acropolis at Athens
Corinthian Temples
Introduction
• The Corinthian order was not
widely used during the Greek
period
• Earliest known example is
inside the 5th century
Temple of Apollo at Bassae.
• The temple of Olympian
Zeus in Athens was in the
Corinthian order
• The column was constructed
in 131 A.D. well after the
Roman conquest of Greece
• The Corinthian order became
very popular during the
Roman period.
Civic Architecture
Introduction
• During the Hellenistic period Greeks became
very fascinated by civic buildings
• Treatments once reserved for temples and the
gods, were gradually extended to civic and
government buildings.
• The Agora or market place also became very
important in Greek cities.
• The theater and council chamber are examples
of civic buildings found in every Greek city
Civic Architecture
Theaters – Theater Epidarus
• The Greeks invented
the theater design that
is still used in movies
and auditoriums today
• Every important Greek
city had a theater
• Their theater was built
into a hilly landscape
• The theater had a bank
of seats steps created
from the landscape
Civic Architecture
Theaters – Theater Epidarus
• The theater had a bank
of seats steps created
from the landscape
• It would usually
commands a view to the
landscape
• The image shown is of
theater Epidaurus
• This was the largest
theater in ancient Greece
• It is still in use today
Civic Architecture
Council Chamber – Bouleterion, Miletus
• The Bouleterion is where the
Boule or council of the city
state met
• It was a covered chamber
fitted with banks of seats like
a theater
• The example shown is from
the city of Miletus
• Similar buildings were found
in every Greek or Hellenistic
city
End of Lecture
Module 4
Ancient Greek Architecture
Outline of Lecture
•Greek City Planning and
Design
•Greek Architecture in Athens
Greek City Planning and
Design
Greek City Planning and Design
Planning and Design Principles
• The ancient Greek civilization had established
principles for planning and designing cities
• City form were of two types
• Old cities such as Athens had irregular street
plans reflecting their gradual organic
development
• New cities, especially colonial cities established
during the Hellenistic period, had a grid-iron
street plan
• Certain things were common among cities
Greek City Planning and Design
Planning and Design Principles
• Towns had fixed boundaries and some were
protected by fortifications
• Much of the town was devoted to public use
• The Greek City was usually divided into three
parts; the acropolis, the agora and the town.
• Site planning and design was centered on the
appreciation of buildings from the outside.
• The location of buildings was therefore such that
it could command a good view to it.
Greek City Planning and Design
The Acropolis
• The Acropolis was the city of temples
• It is the location where all the major temples of a
city are located
• It was built to glorify the gods
• Greeks considered high places to be important &
sacred
• The Acropolis were usually located on the highest
ground
• Other public buildings such as gymnasia, stadia,
and theaters were generally regarded as part of
religious rituals
• They are normally found attached on lower
ground to the hills of the Acropolis
Greek City Planning and Design
The Agora
• The Agora was the most important gathering place in a
Greek city
• It started as an open area where the council of the city
met to take decisions
• With time buildings were constructed to define and
enclose the space
• It also transformed into a place for combined social,
commercial and political activities
• It emerged as the heart of Greek intellectual life and
discourse.
• It was usually located on a flat ground for ease of
communication
• It was placed to be easily accessible from all directions
• In many cities, it is also located close to the Acropolis
Greek City Planning and Design
The Town
• The town was where the people lived
• This was the domain of women, who did
not have any public role
• Early Greek towns had an irregular street
pattern, resulting from its organic growth
• Later Hellenistic towns such as Prienne
had a formal rectilinear pattern
• The town was made up of only residential
houses
Greek City Planning and Design
The Town
• Houses were usually constructed of mud
bricks
• Houses were of the courtyard type, with
rooms arranged around a courtyard
• Houses vary according to standing in the
society
• Houses of poor people were very simple
compared to the house of the rich, which
had more rooms and better finishing
Greek Architecture in Athens
Architecture, Planning & Design
• Athens is a very good example of a typical
ancient Greek city
• The city has the three components of acropolis,
agora and town found in a Greek city
• The Acropolis and Agora in Athens also have
some of the best examples of ancient Greek
architecture
• We will examine the Acropolis and Agora in
Athens to understand Greek architecture,
planning and city design.
Greek Architecture in Athens
The Acropolis in Athens
• The acropolis in Athens was a
religious precinct located on
one of the hills of the city.
• The Earliest versions of the
Buildings in the Acropolis
existed until 480 BC
• In 480 BC, the Persians under
Xerxes burnt Athens and the
Acropolis to the ground
• Not long after that the Greeks
defeated the Persians
Greek Architecture in Athens
The Acropolis in Athens
• The Acropolis in Athens was
rebuilt in about 450 BC
• The rebuilding of the Acropolis
was begun by Pericles, the wise
statesman who ruled from 460
BC to 429 BC
• Pericles commissioned artist
and architects to build a new city
of temples to glorify the gods
• The acropolis combined Doric
orders and ionic orders in a
perfect composition in four
buildings; the Propylea, the
Parthenon, the Erechtheumn,
and the temple of Nike.
Greek Architecture in Athens
Acropolis Athens
• The best example of Greek
emphasis on visualization in
design and site planning is
seen at the Acropolis at
Athens
• All the buildings on the
Acropolis are designed to be
seen than use
• All the temples on the
Acropolis are place at an
angle that enables them to be
seen on two sides
• If a building cannot see be
from two sides, it is
completely hidden
Greek Architecture in Athens
Acropolis Athens
• From the entry at the
Propylae, a visitor has a
view of all the prominent
buildings in the Acropolis
• Buildings are also position
at a distance that ensures
the appreciation of their
details
• The central axis of view
from the propylae is left
free of building for a view
into the country side
Greek Architecture in Athens
Propylae
• The propylae is the entrance to the
Acropolis
• It was built around 437 B.C by
Mnesicles
• The image highlights what is
currently left of the propylae
• To reach the acropolis, people had
to enter through the center section
of the propylae
• The two wings on either side were
never finished
• The columns on the outside of the
propylae were Doric
• The columns in the interior were
however Ionic
Greek Architecture in Athens
Propylae
• Explanation for this is found in the
proportions of the Doric and Ionic
columns
• If the Doric order were used in the
interior, the height of the roof would
make its diameter very large
• To overcome this difficult, the designers
used the Ionic column which is much
slender than the Doric column
• Inside the propylae was a library and
picture gallery with a place for people to
read and rest
• In times of peace, the gates of the
propylae were usually left wide open
• When an enemy threatened, the
wooden doors of the propylae were
closed and there was no other access to
the acropolis
Greek Architecture in Athens
The Parthenon
• The Parthenon was the
most prominent building
on the Athenian
Acropolis
• It was designed by
Ictinus and Callicrates in
447 BC
• The Parthenon is the
most perfect Doric
temple ever built.
• It was lighter and more
graceful than previous
temples
Greek Architecture in Athens
The Parthenon
• It also embodies the
perfection of the Greek
system of proportioning
• The proportions of the
Parthenon are based
on the proportions of a
man, which is seven to
one
• The ideal human body
was seven heads tall
Greek Architecture in Athens
The Parthenon
• The Parthenon is an octastyle
temple with 8 columns in front
and 17 columns by its side
• In the Parthenon we also find
the best example of the
application of entasis
• The Parthenon had two rooms
in plan; the treasury, which is
most often empty and the
naos or inner sanctuary
• An ivory gold statue of
Athena, 11 meters tall carved
by Phidas once stood in the
noas or inner sanctuary of the
Parthenon
Greek Architecture in Athens
The Parthenon
• The statue reached the
wooden roof of the temple
• Parts of the inside and outside
of the Parthenon were once
painted
• The inside of the temple was
often not used
• Processions and ceremonies
were held outside
• The temple’s alter was placed
on the Eastern side
• During the Christian period,
the Parthenon was used as a
church
Greek Architecture in Athens
The Parthenon
• Later the Turks converted it
into a Mosque
• In 1687, the Turks used it to
store ammunition and when
they were attacked by the
Venetians, it exploded
• The images shows what
remains of it
• In 1801 An English man
gathered the broken pieces
and shipped them to the
British museum in England
Greek Architecture in Athens
The Erectheum
• The erechtheum is located at
the point of a mythical fight
between Poseidon and
Athena for the possession of
Athens
• Athena is believed to have
won the fight and so Athens
was named after her
• The erechtheum was named
after Erechtheus, the
legendary king of Athens,
whose mother was the
goddess of the earth and
whose father was the fire god
Greek Architecture in Athens
The Erectheum
• He was brought up by
Athena and is believed
to have judged the fight
between Poseidon and
Athena
• The shape of the
erechtheum is not a
perfect rectangular and
it does not have a
colonnade surrounding
it
Greek Architecture in Athens
The Erectheum
• Two porches spring out from the
core rectangle of the temple at
different levels
• A small porch faces the Parthenon
• This has columns in the shape of a
woman called caryatid
• The caryatids are linked to a
historical story
• The caryatids are a people who
lived in Asia minor
• They were believed to have fought
with the Persians against the
Greeks
• When the Greeks won, they
destroyed the cities of the caryatids
Greek Architecture in Athens
The Erectheum
• They killed all the men and
brought back the women as
slaves
• For revenge the Greeks copied
the Caryatid slave women in
stone and forced them to carry
the roof the Erechtheum for all
time
• The weight of the roof is carried
from the top of the head of the
caryatid through their leg
• A larger porch on the northern
side has ionic columns
• The ionic columns have all the
characteristics of the Ionic
order
Greek Architecture in Athens
Temple of Nike
• Just beside the propylae
is the Temple of Athena
Nike, meaning victorious
Athena
• It was built around 420
BC and was designed by
Callicrates during the
Peloponnesian wars
• The Athenians
worshipped Athena Nike
in the hope of victory
Greek Architecture in Athens
Temple of Nike
• This is an ionic temple
• It had a pediment that
no longer exist
• The temple has an
entrance of four ionic
columns on two sides
• The temple looks the
same from the front
and back
Greek Architecture in Athens
The Agora
• The Agora in Athens was a
space used for social,
commercial and political
activities
• The Agora at Athens was
located at the base of the
hill of the Acropolis
• Civic and religious
buildings were
progressively erected
around the perimeter of the
Agora space
Greek Architecture in Athens
The Agora
• Of all the buildings, the
stoa was the most
important
• Stoas were useful
buildings in the context of
the Agora
• They provided shelter
and served for many
other purposes
• They also served to
embellish the boundary of
the Agora
Greek Architecture in Athens
Introduction
• The Agora at Athens
contains other
administrative buildings
• There was the bouleterion
for the meeting of the
council
• There was also a tholos, a
circular building where the
standing committee of the
council when in office
dined at state expense
• There were also two
buildings for the meeting
of the jury court.
Greek Architecture in Athens
Introduction
• And a shrine where the
remains of Alexander was
buried
• The central area of the Agora
was free of building
• This image shows a
reconstruction of how social
life may have taken place in
the Agora
• People would be in the space
of the Agora carrying out all
sorts of activities with the
Acropolis prominent in the
background and the gods
hopefully looking after them
End of Lecture
Module 6 Lecture 20
Ancient Greek Architecture
Outline of Lecture
• Lecture 20
– Architectural Characteristics
• Buildings and other architectural elements
• Building materials, construction and
technologies
• Architectural Organizing principles
Architectural Characteristics
Buildings & Other Arch
Elements
Buildings & Other Arch. Elements
Building Types
• The major architectural element of the Greek civilization is
the order and their principal building type is the temple
• Greek buildings also feature civic buildings such as
theater, council chamber, stoa, etc
• Greeks invented the classical orders of architecture
• Their invention of the orders was a result of the search for
rational methods of expressing beauty
• The orders embody a system of proportion that determines
how the whole building looks
• An order consist of a column shaft with its base and
capital, and an entablature
• All its dimensions were derived from the diameter of the
column
• The entablature is further divided into architrave, frieze and
cornice
Buildings & Other Arch. Elements
Building Types
• Three orders of architecture were invented by Greeks;
Doric, Ionic and Corinthian
• Doric was the earliest and has a square capital and the
stoutest proportion, resembling the power of a man
• Ionic was taller in its proportion, has a volute capital and
resembles the proportion of a maiden
• Corinthian has the same characteristics with the Ionic
except that its capital is decorated with the Acanthus leaf
• Temples were the principal building types of the Greeks
• Temples were considered as house of the Gods and
efforts to beautify them pushed architectural development
Buildings & Other Arch. Elements
Building Types
• Temples were design to be seen and
appreciated rather than used
• The evolution of the orders led to standard
temple forms based on them
• Towards the later part of the Greek civilization,
there was also a focus on civic construction
• The Greeks needed civic buildings to support
their democratic institutions and also satisfy
their social and recreational needs
• Council chambers, theaters, Stoas, were
among the civic buildings that became popular
with the city states
Materials, Const. & Tech.
Materials, Construction & Tech.
Materials
• Examination of Greek architecture points to three
common materials of construction
• These are Stone, timber and clay
• Stone was the most common construction material for
buildings
• Greece had an abundant supply of stone, particularly
marble
• Stone was used for all types of temple and civic
construction
• It was used for all type of building elements
• The characteristic grey color of the stone of the area is
also what gives most ancient Greek buildings their
characteristics color
Materials, Construction & Tech.
Materials
• Timber was used mainly for roofing
• It was a very scarce commodity and it also had
limited length
• This limited its use
• The limitation in length meant that the width of
buildings was restricted and only very important
buildings such as the Parthenon could go
beyond a certain width
• We did not examine Houses but clay was used
mostly in housing construction
• Clay was made into sun dried blocks for use in
construction
Materials, Construction & Tech.
Construction and Technology
• The principal Building Material of ancient
Greece was stone
• The principal construction system was
trabeated or column and beam construction
• Combined, the two were used for temples and
civic buildings
• Construction technology involves ordering
stones in semi-prepared state from quarries,
• On site, they were roughly shaped and placed
in position on the building
• Elements placed in position would be been
sized to the right proportion
Materials, Construction & Tech.
Construction and Technology
• Building blocks were not bonded, but are rather
held in position by their weight
• Then the rough stones were finished to achieve
the final form and treatment of the building
• Finishing enables the builders to create
buildings of a particular order
• It is in finishing that the Greeks showed their
mastery of construction
• Finishing work involved creating the fluting, base
and capital decoration on columns
• The Frieze and cornices of buildings were also
decorated with appropriate relief carving
Materials, Construction & Tech.
Construction and Technology
• Pediments were also finished with relief carvings,
which in temples depict stories of the gods
• Full statues of gods were also carved and placed
on strategic places on the outside of the temple
and also as the major element in the interior
• The Greeks essentially formalized architectural
sculpture and decoration
• They were able to effectively translate their ideas
of beauty into tangible buildings
• Ancient Greeks did not make significant
contributions in the aspect of building
technologies
Principles of Arch.
Organization
Principles of Arch. Organization
Principles
• It is possible to understand forces and
principles shaping Greek architecture by
examining the following issues;
– The role of religion in architectural
development
– Ideas about architectural aesthetics
– Principles of architectural organization
– Principles of city planning and urban design
Principles of Arch. Organization
The Role of Religion in Arch. Dev.
• Religion played a significant role in the
development of Greek architecture
• Architecture started in the service of religion
• The important question for Greek architects was
the right form of the temple
• Temples were the house of the Gods
• The duty of the architect was to make them
beautiful
• The search for how to make the temple beautiful
resulted in the establishment of Greek ideals of
beauty
• Greek ideals of beauty was rooted in
mathematical proportions
Principles of Arch. Organization
Ideas about Architectural Aesthetics
• The Greeks believed that mathematical
proportion is at the root of beauty
• They also believed that the human body has
the best of proportions
• Greeks also valued harmony, balance and
symmetry in design
• Greeks developed principles based on their
believes about aesthetics
• These principles were refined over time as they
are applied in building
• With time they developed into a standard that is
widely applied
Principles of Arch. Organization
Ideas about Architectural Aesthetics
• Builders exerted great effort in ensuring
that buildings were created to meet the
aesthetic ideals of the society
• The Greeks in essence became the first
society to have well established ideas
about architectural aesthetics with
principles for their translation into physical
design
Principles of Arch. Organization
Principles of Organization
• The Greek ideals of mathematical
proportion was applied in architecture
through the use of the orders
• The orders provide a means to codify
mathematical proportioning, by linking all
the elements of the building with the
diameter of the column
• The orders were also viewed as
anthropomorphic, representing the human
body
Principles of Arch. Organization
Principles of Organization
• The Doric represents a man and the Ionic
and Corinthian represent a woman
• The use of the orders also provided a
means for the Greeks to design buildings
to meet their ideals of harmony, balance
and symmetry
• The use of optical correction, entasis, is a
pointer to the desire of the Greeks to
achieve their ideals of beauty in
architecture
Principles of Arch. Organization
Principles of City Planning & Design
• Ancient Greeks not only develop ideals of architectural
aesthetics, but they also developed principles for the
design and planning of cities as location for architecture
• The ancient Greek city states developed a standard plan
of the city
• The city consisted of three defined elements; the town,
acropolis and Agora
• Principles were developed for organizing each element of
the city based on activities and its symbolism
• The town was a place to retire for the day
• It was composed of simple courtyard houses separated
by streets
• It could either be organic or grid-iron
Principles of Arch. Organization
Principles of City Planning & Design
• The Acropolis was the city of the gods
• This is where buildings reflecting the highest ideals of
beauty were placed to be seen rather than used
• The principle of its design is that of isolated objects
arranged in open space
• The objects are arranged to be seen in three-dimension
• The Agora was a mundane place for social, commercial
and political activities
• The principle of its design centers on creating boundaries
to contain space for activities
• In practice, stoas and other civic buildings are used to
loosely define the space
• These are usually treated with continuous colonnades or
porticoes along the side of the court with occasional
penetrations by footpaths
End of Module 5

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History-of-Architecture-I.pptx greek.pptx

  • 1. History of Architecture I Ancient Greek Architecture Lecturer : Arch Ayanle Omar
  • 2. Outline  Historical Background • Location and period • Social characteristics and beliefs  Architecture of the Civilization • Greek Orders • Temple Architecture • Civic Architecture  Greek City Planning and Design • Greek Architecture in Athens  Architectural Characteristics • Buildings and other architectural elements • Building materials, construction and technologies • Architectural Organizing principles
  • 4. Outline of Lecture –Historical Background • Location and period •Social characteristics and beliefs
  • 6. Historical Background Location • Greek civilization occurred in the area around the Greek mainland, on a peninsula that extends into the Mediterranean Sea • It started in cities on the Greek mainland and on islands in the Aegean Sea • Towards the later or Hellenistic period, Greek civilization spread to other far away places including Asia Minor and Northern Africa
  • 7. Historical Background Location • Most of the Greek mainland was rocky and barren and therefore bad for agriculture • Most Greeks therefore lived along the coastline or on islands where the soil was good for farming • The Aegean and Mediterranean Seas provided a means of communication and trade with other places
  • 8. Historical Background Period • The period of ancient Greek history can be divided into four as follows: – 1100 B. C. – 750 B. C. Greek Dark Ages – 750 B. C. – 500 B. C. Archaic Period – 5000 B. C. – 323 B. C. Classical Period – 323 B. C. – 147 B. C. Hellenistic Period • The classical and archaic period are sometimes collectively referred to as Hellenic period
  • 9. Historical Background Social Characteristics & Beliefs • Introduction – Greek civilization is the first major civilization in Europe – Greek civilization along with the Roman civilization are said to be at the root of current western civilization – They two are referred to as “classical” cultures because of their recognition as the root of western civilization – Greek and Roman architecture are also referred to as classical architecture – Greek civilization started with the mingling of two Greek cultures, the Dorian and the Ionian to create a single Hellenic culture – The two developed a sedentary agricultural and commercial society that ultimately gave birth to the concept of the city state
  • 10. Historical Background Social Characteristics & Beliefs • Societal Organization- The city state – The ancient Greeks lived in self governing city-states called "polis." – The city-states were small, independent communities which were male-dominated and bound together by race. – The ancient Greek world was made up of hundreds of these independent city states – The polis started as a defensible area to which farmers of an area could retreat in the event of an attack as in the Mycenaean citadels – Over time, towns grew around these defensible areas.
  • 11. Historical Background Social Characteristics & Beliefs • Societal Organization- The city state – Every polis was different from another, even though there were similarities between them – They were all bounded by common language and religious beliefs – They all made efforts to preserve their own unique identity, and each city state believed that their state was better than all the other states – The city states often fought with one another. – The city state of Athens on the Greek mainland was among the most famous and powerful of the city states
  • 12. Historical Background Social Characteristics & Beliefs • Societal Organization- The city state – It was a major center for learning and the arts. – When city-states were first formed, they were ruled by a few wealthy men. – However, they gradually moved towards democracy. – Athens developed an early form of democracy – How did they make laws? Only men who were born in Athens were allowed to vote. – They did this at public assemblies where upper class citizens discussed and adopted laws that might benefit Athens.
  • 13. Historical Background Social Characteristics & Beliefs • Social Organization And Responsibility – The scale of the polis was small. – The philosophers Aristotle and Plato believed that the polis should be of a small size, so that members know each other personally – The ideal size of a city state was fixed at 5040 males by Plato – Citizens in any polis were related by blood and so family ties were very strong. – Membership of the polis was hereditary and could not be passed to persons outside the family
  • 14. Historical Background Social Characteristics & Beliefs • Religious Belief – The ancient Greeks were polytheistic, believing in many different gods and goddesses – The God were regarded as all powerful but similar to human beings in their passions, desires and appetite – All aspect of life was under the protection of the gods, and they controlled everything, from the waves in the ocean to the winner of a race. – All the gods and goddesses had specific roles, controlling one or two major aspects of life – Zeus was, for example, the supreme leader of the gods, Hermes was the messenger of the gods, and Poseidon was the god of the sea
  • 15. Historical Background Social Characteristics & Beliefs • Place of Worship – Temples were the focus of Greek religious worships – Temples were usually built in the cities of the Gods called “Acropolis” – Temples were built in every town and city for one or more god or goddess – The temples were considered as offerings to the gods – Each community was therefore under pressure to make them beautiful as possible
  • 16. Historical Background Social Characteristics & Beliefs • Place of Worship – The temples were also considered as the house of the gods – They were not designed for functional use – They usually consist of a large open hall called sanctuary where the statue of the god to whom it is dedicated is kept – The temples were the places for routine festivals to the gods – The festivals included plays, music, dancing, and then a parade to the temple where they made sacrifices and had a feast. – Animals were usually sacrificed as a gift to the gods
  • 17. Historical Background Social Characteristics & Beliefs • Architecture in service of religion – Architecture in Greece Started in the Service of Religions – Temples were the abode of gods – The Greeks regarded beauty as an attribute of the gods and the conscious pursuit of beauty as a religious exercise. – The most important task for architects was how to make the temple beautiful – The search for ways to express architectural beauty made the Greek civilization among the first to have established ideals of beauty
  • 18. Historical Background Social Characteristics & Beliefs • Architecture in service of religion – The Greeks convinced themselves that the secrets of beauty lie in proportions – Man was viewed by the Greeks as having the most ideal proportions and is the measure of all things – Greek developed a system of building proportion that reflected those of the human body – With time, they refined their system of building proportion, and developed the classical Greek orders which we will soon explore
  • 19. Historical Background Social Characteristics & Beliefs • Architecture in service of religion – The principal building material of the ancient Greeks was stone – Clay and timber were also used – Timber was used mostly for roofing and its scarcity coupled with limitations in its length imposed restrictions on the width of buildings – Temples were the main building type and it was used as a decoration element by every city
  • 20. Historical Background Social Characteristics & Beliefs • Architecture in service of religion – Greek society also made buildings other than temples – These evolved in response to changes in need with time – The most common buildings are amphitheaters, council halls, public fountains and theatres, gymnasia, schools and libraries, public baths and lavatories – As these civic buildings emerge, treatment once reserved for temple was extended to them even though on a less grander scale than in the temples
  • 21. Historical Background Social Characteristics & Beliefs • Architecture in service of religion – Greek construction was of a simple post and lintel or trabeated construction – Their ground plans were always very simple, usually rectangular – With a combination of simple ground plans and trabeated construction, they were able to create amazing buildings – Buildings were constructed by skilled craftsmen who were in demand and traveled from one state to the other for construction work – Designs were done on the ground by measuring out the foundation
  • 22. Historical Background Social Characteristics & Beliefs • Architecture in service of religion – Blocks of stone were ordered from the quarry – Blocks were given initial preparation on the building site – Blocks were large and retained in position by their own weight; it was not necessary to fix them together in any way – Roofs were of wood beams and rafters cut to square shapes with tile roof – Carvings and other decorative work were finished when the building is completed
  • 23. Historical Background Social Characteristics & Beliefs • Other Activities and Achievements – Greek society contributed to the earliest development of science and scientific inquiry – Greeks attempted to explain the world through the laws of nature. – Greeks found out that the earth was round and A Greek person is credited as being the first to measure the circumference of the Earth – The Greeks also made significant contributions to the arts, particularly in sculpture and painting
  • 24. Historical Background Social Characteristics & Beliefs • Other Activities and Achievements – They wrote many stories and plays that continue to be performed today. – The ancient Greeks were huge sports fans and sports was considered a part of religion – Every four years, the Greeks held the Olympic Games in the stadium at Olympia. – The best athletes in Greece competed in different events – Because the games were religious, anyone who was caught cheating during the games was never allowed to compete again
  • 26. Module 2 Ancient Greek Architecture
  • 27. Outline of Lecture • Lecture 3 –Architecture of the Civilization •Greek Orders •Temple Architecture •Civic Architecture
  • 28. Architecture of the Civilization
  • 29. The Orders Introduction • Refer to the entire set of form that makes up the principal elevation of a temple. • Composed of a base, an upright column or support with its capital, and the horizontal entablature. • All the parts of an order are proportionally derived from the size of the base of the column. • It determines all aspects of the elevation of a building including its shape and the arrangement and proportion of its parts
  • 30. The Orders Introduction • Greeks are credited with originating the three orders of the classical language of architecture, Doric, Ionic and Corinthian. • Columns were understood by the Greeks to be anthropomorphic or representative of the body of a human • The base suggests the feet, the shaft the torso and the capital the head.
  • 31. The Orders Introduction • Each order had its own conventions about the design of the entablature • The entablature is divided into three sections; the cornices, the frieze and the architrave • According the rules of classical architecture, the entablature should always be divisible into these three zones
  • 32. The Doric Order • Doric columns are the heaviest in appearance • The capital is plain. • The shaft is thick – though it loses some of its mass over time. • There is no base.
  • 33. The Ionic Order • These have greater elegance. • The capital has distinctive volutes. • The shaft is thinner than its Doric equivalent. • A base is apparent.
  • 34. The Corinthian Order • This is also a tall, elegant form. • The capital has distinctive acanthus leaf decoration. • A base is also employed.
  • 35. The Orders Column Construction • Do you wonder how the columns of the Greek orders were constructed? • Each column was made up of several drums of marble • They were held together by a stone peg in the center • The stones were assembled and put together in their rough form
  • 36. The Orders Column Construction • The capital was also carved out • After they were put together, the grooves called flutes were cut up and down the shaft of the column and all around it • This gave the column its slim and elegant look
  • 37. Temple Architecture Introduction • The most important Greek building was the temple • The temple had the finest building materials and the richest decoration. • It was also the most complex of architectural form. • It was designed not to hold worshippers, but as symbolic dwelling of the gods • The temple is usually rectangular in plan • It is lifted on a podium, and in plan has colonnades on all its external sides
  • 38. Temple Architecture; Introduction • The number of columns is always even to allow the location of the entrance in the center; temples with odd number of columns are uncommon • Temples with 2 columns in front are diastyle, 4-tetrastyle, 6- hexastyle, 8-octastyle and 10- decastyle • Greek temples usually have twice the number of columns in front plus one by the side; A hexastyle temple =six columns in front & thirteen on side
  • 39. Temple Architecture; Introduction • Colonnades define a portico around the temple • The temple building is made up of four walls enclosing a rectangular space called the naos or sanctuary • This was the house of the god to whom the temple is dedicated • The interior rectangular space of the naos is framed by a pair of colonnades on the long side creating a central processional space • At the head of the processional space is the statue of the god to whom the temple is dedicated • The temple interior was generally dark, with only the entrance as a source of light
  • 41. Temple Architecture; Introduction • The temple always faced east so that the rising sun would light the statues inside • Temples were designed to be admired from the outside rather than used • The Greek temple is believed to originate from the Mycenaean megaron • From the megaron, it went through several stages of evolution as shown in the diagram • By 500 BC, the final form of the Greek temple had emerged
  • 42. Temple Architecture Doric Temple • The Doric temple is based on the Doric order • Both the Doric order and temple went through a simultaneous process of evolution • The Basilica at Paestum 550 BC is an example of early Doric temple • It was built during the archaic period of Greek civilization
  • 43. Temple Architecture Doric Temple • The columns on the front are 9, while on the sides they are 18 • The Doric columns appear heavy in comparison with later temples • The columns have a bulge, pointing to the practice of optical correction or entasis by the time of its construction • The capitals are also huge, heavy and very wide
  • 44. Doric Temple Temple of Aphaia at Aegina • The Temple of Aphaia at Aegina 490 BC is a later temple than the Basilica at Paestum • Temple of Aphaia is much less heavy than Paestum • The entablature is less thick • The columns are slimmer with less entasis or bulge • The capitals are also smaller
  • 45. Doric Temple Temple of Aphaia at Aegina • This temple is hexastyle but has only 12 flanking columns- early temple • The interior columns are divided into a row of two columns separated by an architrave • This allowed the designers to avoid using columns with a large diameter • The temple has triangular pediment on n the Eastern and Western sides decorated with stories from Greek myths
  • 46. Doric Temples Temple of Hera Argiva at Paestum • The Temple of Hera Argiva (or Neptune) at Paestum 460 BC was built later than the Temple of Aphaia • It is one of the best preserved of all Greek temples • It is more mature in its proportions than all the others examined • The columns are 8.8 meters high and about 4.3 times their lower diameter
  • 47. Doric Temples Temple of Hera Argiva at Paestum • The temple is hexastyle but with 24 columns on its flank • It also has a double row of columns in the interior, and divided into two separated by a stone architrave • The most perfect of the Doric temples is the Parthenon; We will examine this temple later
  • 48. Ionic Temples Introduction • Ionic temples were built using the Ionic order • The most famous of the Ionic temples is the temple of Artemis at Ephesus • It was considered one of the seven wonders of the ancient World • It was commissioned by Alexander the Great and was believed to have been built and destroyed several times • Unfortunately the temple has not survived to the present time
  • 49. Ionic Temples Introduction • There are also uncertainties about its arrangement in plan • The temple stands on a platform 2.7 meters high • It had 36 columns in its front and they had an additional relief sculpture at the base • The best surviving Ionic temples is the Temple of Athena located at the Acropolis at Athens
  • 50. Corinthian Temples Introduction • The Corinthian order was not widely used during the Greek period • Earliest known example is inside the 5th century Temple of Apollo at Bassae. • The temple of Olympian Zeus in Athens was in the Corinthian order • The column was constructed in 131 A.D. well after the Roman conquest of Greece • The Corinthian order became very popular during the Roman period.
  • 51. Civic Architecture Introduction • During the Hellenistic period Greeks became very fascinated by civic buildings • Treatments once reserved for temples and the gods, were gradually extended to civic and government buildings. • The Agora or market place also became very important in Greek cities. • The theater and council chamber are examples of civic buildings found in every Greek city
  • 52. Civic Architecture Theaters – Theater Epidarus • The Greeks invented the theater design that is still used in movies and auditoriums today • Every important Greek city had a theater • Their theater was built into a hilly landscape • The theater had a bank of seats steps created from the landscape
  • 53. Civic Architecture Theaters – Theater Epidarus • The theater had a bank of seats steps created from the landscape • It would usually commands a view to the landscape • The image shown is of theater Epidaurus • This was the largest theater in ancient Greece • It is still in use today
  • 54. Civic Architecture Council Chamber – Bouleterion, Miletus • The Bouleterion is where the Boule or council of the city state met • It was a covered chamber fitted with banks of seats like a theater • The example shown is from the city of Miletus • Similar buildings were found in every Greek or Hellenistic city
  • 56. Module 4 Ancient Greek Architecture
  • 57. Outline of Lecture •Greek City Planning and Design •Greek Architecture in Athens
  • 58. Greek City Planning and Design
  • 59. Greek City Planning and Design Planning and Design Principles • The ancient Greek civilization had established principles for planning and designing cities • City form were of two types • Old cities such as Athens had irregular street plans reflecting their gradual organic development • New cities, especially colonial cities established during the Hellenistic period, had a grid-iron street plan • Certain things were common among cities
  • 60. Greek City Planning and Design Planning and Design Principles • Towns had fixed boundaries and some were protected by fortifications • Much of the town was devoted to public use • The Greek City was usually divided into three parts; the acropolis, the agora and the town. • Site planning and design was centered on the appreciation of buildings from the outside. • The location of buildings was therefore such that it could command a good view to it.
  • 61. Greek City Planning and Design The Acropolis • The Acropolis was the city of temples • It is the location where all the major temples of a city are located • It was built to glorify the gods • Greeks considered high places to be important & sacred • The Acropolis were usually located on the highest ground • Other public buildings such as gymnasia, stadia, and theaters were generally regarded as part of religious rituals • They are normally found attached on lower ground to the hills of the Acropolis
  • 62. Greek City Planning and Design The Agora • The Agora was the most important gathering place in a Greek city • It started as an open area where the council of the city met to take decisions • With time buildings were constructed to define and enclose the space • It also transformed into a place for combined social, commercial and political activities • It emerged as the heart of Greek intellectual life and discourse. • It was usually located on a flat ground for ease of communication • It was placed to be easily accessible from all directions • In many cities, it is also located close to the Acropolis
  • 63. Greek City Planning and Design The Town • The town was where the people lived • This was the domain of women, who did not have any public role • Early Greek towns had an irregular street pattern, resulting from its organic growth • Later Hellenistic towns such as Prienne had a formal rectilinear pattern • The town was made up of only residential houses
  • 64. Greek City Planning and Design The Town • Houses were usually constructed of mud bricks • Houses were of the courtyard type, with rooms arranged around a courtyard • Houses vary according to standing in the society • Houses of poor people were very simple compared to the house of the rich, which had more rooms and better finishing
  • 65. Greek Architecture in Athens Architecture, Planning & Design • Athens is a very good example of a typical ancient Greek city • The city has the three components of acropolis, agora and town found in a Greek city • The Acropolis and Agora in Athens also have some of the best examples of ancient Greek architecture • We will examine the Acropolis and Agora in Athens to understand Greek architecture, planning and city design.
  • 66. Greek Architecture in Athens The Acropolis in Athens • The acropolis in Athens was a religious precinct located on one of the hills of the city. • The Earliest versions of the Buildings in the Acropolis existed until 480 BC • In 480 BC, the Persians under Xerxes burnt Athens and the Acropolis to the ground • Not long after that the Greeks defeated the Persians
  • 67. Greek Architecture in Athens The Acropolis in Athens • The Acropolis in Athens was rebuilt in about 450 BC • The rebuilding of the Acropolis was begun by Pericles, the wise statesman who ruled from 460 BC to 429 BC • Pericles commissioned artist and architects to build a new city of temples to glorify the gods • The acropolis combined Doric orders and ionic orders in a perfect composition in four buildings; the Propylea, the Parthenon, the Erechtheumn, and the temple of Nike.
  • 68. Greek Architecture in Athens Acropolis Athens • The best example of Greek emphasis on visualization in design and site planning is seen at the Acropolis at Athens • All the buildings on the Acropolis are designed to be seen than use • All the temples on the Acropolis are place at an angle that enables them to be seen on two sides • If a building cannot see be from two sides, it is completely hidden
  • 69. Greek Architecture in Athens Acropolis Athens • From the entry at the Propylae, a visitor has a view of all the prominent buildings in the Acropolis • Buildings are also position at a distance that ensures the appreciation of their details • The central axis of view from the propylae is left free of building for a view into the country side
  • 70. Greek Architecture in Athens Propylae • The propylae is the entrance to the Acropolis • It was built around 437 B.C by Mnesicles • The image highlights what is currently left of the propylae • To reach the acropolis, people had to enter through the center section of the propylae • The two wings on either side were never finished • The columns on the outside of the propylae were Doric • The columns in the interior were however Ionic
  • 71. Greek Architecture in Athens Propylae • Explanation for this is found in the proportions of the Doric and Ionic columns • If the Doric order were used in the interior, the height of the roof would make its diameter very large • To overcome this difficult, the designers used the Ionic column which is much slender than the Doric column • Inside the propylae was a library and picture gallery with a place for people to read and rest • In times of peace, the gates of the propylae were usually left wide open • When an enemy threatened, the wooden doors of the propylae were closed and there was no other access to the acropolis
  • 72. Greek Architecture in Athens The Parthenon • The Parthenon was the most prominent building on the Athenian Acropolis • It was designed by Ictinus and Callicrates in 447 BC • The Parthenon is the most perfect Doric temple ever built. • It was lighter and more graceful than previous temples
  • 73. Greek Architecture in Athens The Parthenon • It also embodies the perfection of the Greek system of proportioning • The proportions of the Parthenon are based on the proportions of a man, which is seven to one • The ideal human body was seven heads tall
  • 74. Greek Architecture in Athens The Parthenon • The Parthenon is an octastyle temple with 8 columns in front and 17 columns by its side • In the Parthenon we also find the best example of the application of entasis • The Parthenon had two rooms in plan; the treasury, which is most often empty and the naos or inner sanctuary • An ivory gold statue of Athena, 11 meters tall carved by Phidas once stood in the noas or inner sanctuary of the Parthenon
  • 75. Greek Architecture in Athens The Parthenon • The statue reached the wooden roof of the temple • Parts of the inside and outside of the Parthenon were once painted • The inside of the temple was often not used • Processions and ceremonies were held outside • The temple’s alter was placed on the Eastern side • During the Christian period, the Parthenon was used as a church
  • 76. Greek Architecture in Athens The Parthenon • Later the Turks converted it into a Mosque • In 1687, the Turks used it to store ammunition and when they were attacked by the Venetians, it exploded • The images shows what remains of it • In 1801 An English man gathered the broken pieces and shipped them to the British museum in England
  • 77. Greek Architecture in Athens The Erectheum • The erechtheum is located at the point of a mythical fight between Poseidon and Athena for the possession of Athens • Athena is believed to have won the fight and so Athens was named after her • The erechtheum was named after Erechtheus, the legendary king of Athens, whose mother was the goddess of the earth and whose father was the fire god
  • 78. Greek Architecture in Athens The Erectheum • He was brought up by Athena and is believed to have judged the fight between Poseidon and Athena • The shape of the erechtheum is not a perfect rectangular and it does not have a colonnade surrounding it
  • 79. Greek Architecture in Athens The Erectheum • Two porches spring out from the core rectangle of the temple at different levels • A small porch faces the Parthenon • This has columns in the shape of a woman called caryatid • The caryatids are linked to a historical story • The caryatids are a people who lived in Asia minor • They were believed to have fought with the Persians against the Greeks • When the Greeks won, they destroyed the cities of the caryatids
  • 80. Greek Architecture in Athens The Erectheum • They killed all the men and brought back the women as slaves • For revenge the Greeks copied the Caryatid slave women in stone and forced them to carry the roof the Erechtheum for all time • The weight of the roof is carried from the top of the head of the caryatid through their leg • A larger porch on the northern side has ionic columns • The ionic columns have all the characteristics of the Ionic order
  • 81. Greek Architecture in Athens Temple of Nike • Just beside the propylae is the Temple of Athena Nike, meaning victorious Athena • It was built around 420 BC and was designed by Callicrates during the Peloponnesian wars • The Athenians worshipped Athena Nike in the hope of victory
  • 82. Greek Architecture in Athens Temple of Nike • This is an ionic temple • It had a pediment that no longer exist • The temple has an entrance of four ionic columns on two sides • The temple looks the same from the front and back
  • 83. Greek Architecture in Athens The Agora • The Agora in Athens was a space used for social, commercial and political activities • The Agora at Athens was located at the base of the hill of the Acropolis • Civic and religious buildings were progressively erected around the perimeter of the Agora space
  • 84. Greek Architecture in Athens The Agora • Of all the buildings, the stoa was the most important • Stoas were useful buildings in the context of the Agora • They provided shelter and served for many other purposes • They also served to embellish the boundary of the Agora
  • 85. Greek Architecture in Athens Introduction • The Agora at Athens contains other administrative buildings • There was the bouleterion for the meeting of the council • There was also a tholos, a circular building where the standing committee of the council when in office dined at state expense • There were also two buildings for the meeting of the jury court.
  • 86. Greek Architecture in Athens Introduction • And a shrine where the remains of Alexander was buried • The central area of the Agora was free of building • This image shows a reconstruction of how social life may have taken place in the Agora • People would be in the space of the Agora carrying out all sorts of activities with the Acropolis prominent in the background and the gods hopefully looking after them
  • 88. Module 6 Lecture 20 Ancient Greek Architecture
  • 89. Outline of Lecture • Lecture 20 – Architectural Characteristics • Buildings and other architectural elements • Building materials, construction and technologies • Architectural Organizing principles
  • 91. Buildings & Other Arch Elements
  • 92. Buildings & Other Arch. Elements Building Types • The major architectural element of the Greek civilization is the order and their principal building type is the temple • Greek buildings also feature civic buildings such as theater, council chamber, stoa, etc • Greeks invented the classical orders of architecture • Their invention of the orders was a result of the search for rational methods of expressing beauty • The orders embody a system of proportion that determines how the whole building looks • An order consist of a column shaft with its base and capital, and an entablature • All its dimensions were derived from the diameter of the column • The entablature is further divided into architrave, frieze and cornice
  • 93. Buildings & Other Arch. Elements Building Types • Three orders of architecture were invented by Greeks; Doric, Ionic and Corinthian • Doric was the earliest and has a square capital and the stoutest proportion, resembling the power of a man • Ionic was taller in its proportion, has a volute capital and resembles the proportion of a maiden • Corinthian has the same characteristics with the Ionic except that its capital is decorated with the Acanthus leaf • Temples were the principal building types of the Greeks • Temples were considered as house of the Gods and efforts to beautify them pushed architectural development
  • 94. Buildings & Other Arch. Elements Building Types • Temples were design to be seen and appreciated rather than used • The evolution of the orders led to standard temple forms based on them • Towards the later part of the Greek civilization, there was also a focus on civic construction • The Greeks needed civic buildings to support their democratic institutions and also satisfy their social and recreational needs • Council chambers, theaters, Stoas, were among the civic buildings that became popular with the city states
  • 96. Materials, Construction & Tech. Materials • Examination of Greek architecture points to three common materials of construction • These are Stone, timber and clay • Stone was the most common construction material for buildings • Greece had an abundant supply of stone, particularly marble • Stone was used for all types of temple and civic construction • It was used for all type of building elements • The characteristic grey color of the stone of the area is also what gives most ancient Greek buildings their characteristics color
  • 97. Materials, Construction & Tech. Materials • Timber was used mainly for roofing • It was a very scarce commodity and it also had limited length • This limited its use • The limitation in length meant that the width of buildings was restricted and only very important buildings such as the Parthenon could go beyond a certain width • We did not examine Houses but clay was used mostly in housing construction • Clay was made into sun dried blocks for use in construction
  • 98. Materials, Construction & Tech. Construction and Technology • The principal Building Material of ancient Greece was stone • The principal construction system was trabeated or column and beam construction • Combined, the two were used for temples and civic buildings • Construction technology involves ordering stones in semi-prepared state from quarries, • On site, they were roughly shaped and placed in position on the building • Elements placed in position would be been sized to the right proportion
  • 99. Materials, Construction & Tech. Construction and Technology • Building blocks were not bonded, but are rather held in position by their weight • Then the rough stones were finished to achieve the final form and treatment of the building • Finishing enables the builders to create buildings of a particular order • It is in finishing that the Greeks showed their mastery of construction • Finishing work involved creating the fluting, base and capital decoration on columns • The Frieze and cornices of buildings were also decorated with appropriate relief carving
  • 100. Materials, Construction & Tech. Construction and Technology • Pediments were also finished with relief carvings, which in temples depict stories of the gods • Full statues of gods were also carved and placed on strategic places on the outside of the temple and also as the major element in the interior • The Greeks essentially formalized architectural sculpture and decoration • They were able to effectively translate their ideas of beauty into tangible buildings • Ancient Greeks did not make significant contributions in the aspect of building technologies
  • 102. Principles of Arch. Organization Principles • It is possible to understand forces and principles shaping Greek architecture by examining the following issues; – The role of religion in architectural development – Ideas about architectural aesthetics – Principles of architectural organization – Principles of city planning and urban design
  • 103. Principles of Arch. Organization The Role of Religion in Arch. Dev. • Religion played a significant role in the development of Greek architecture • Architecture started in the service of religion • The important question for Greek architects was the right form of the temple • Temples were the house of the Gods • The duty of the architect was to make them beautiful • The search for how to make the temple beautiful resulted in the establishment of Greek ideals of beauty • Greek ideals of beauty was rooted in mathematical proportions
  • 104. Principles of Arch. Organization Ideas about Architectural Aesthetics • The Greeks believed that mathematical proportion is at the root of beauty • They also believed that the human body has the best of proportions • Greeks also valued harmony, balance and symmetry in design • Greeks developed principles based on their believes about aesthetics • These principles were refined over time as they are applied in building • With time they developed into a standard that is widely applied
  • 105. Principles of Arch. Organization Ideas about Architectural Aesthetics • Builders exerted great effort in ensuring that buildings were created to meet the aesthetic ideals of the society • The Greeks in essence became the first society to have well established ideas about architectural aesthetics with principles for their translation into physical design
  • 106. Principles of Arch. Organization Principles of Organization • The Greek ideals of mathematical proportion was applied in architecture through the use of the orders • The orders provide a means to codify mathematical proportioning, by linking all the elements of the building with the diameter of the column • The orders were also viewed as anthropomorphic, representing the human body
  • 107. Principles of Arch. Organization Principles of Organization • The Doric represents a man and the Ionic and Corinthian represent a woman • The use of the orders also provided a means for the Greeks to design buildings to meet their ideals of harmony, balance and symmetry • The use of optical correction, entasis, is a pointer to the desire of the Greeks to achieve their ideals of beauty in architecture
  • 108. Principles of Arch. Organization Principles of City Planning & Design • Ancient Greeks not only develop ideals of architectural aesthetics, but they also developed principles for the design and planning of cities as location for architecture • The ancient Greek city states developed a standard plan of the city • The city consisted of three defined elements; the town, acropolis and Agora • Principles were developed for organizing each element of the city based on activities and its symbolism • The town was a place to retire for the day • It was composed of simple courtyard houses separated by streets • It could either be organic or grid-iron
  • 109. Principles of Arch. Organization Principles of City Planning & Design • The Acropolis was the city of the gods • This is where buildings reflecting the highest ideals of beauty were placed to be seen rather than used • The principle of its design is that of isolated objects arranged in open space • The objects are arranged to be seen in three-dimension • The Agora was a mundane place for social, commercial and political activities • The principle of its design centers on creating boundaries to contain space for activities • In practice, stoas and other civic buildings are used to loosely define the space • These are usually treated with continuous colonnades or porticoes along the side of the court with occasional penetrations by footpaths