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Encyclopedia > Architectural history
Table of architecture, Cyclopaedia, 1728

Architectural history is a discipline which records, studies and interprets architecture, its forms, purposes and evolution. Architecture has been observed and recorded since ancient times. In terms of the study of Western architecture study must begin in Mesopotamia at the founding of civilisation. Often, architectural history is derived only from the Graeco-Roman period onwards, and when using this period as a starting point confines itself to a history of styles and formal changes. A typical starting point in this approach would begin with classical authors such as Herodotus, writing in the mid 5th century BC, and move through the periods of history using works such as Vitruvius' books rewritten and recorded by Palladio. Image File history File links Information. ... Image File history File linksMetadata Download high resolution version (2529x2708, 2983 KB)Table of architecture, Cyclopaedia, 1728, volume 1 http://digicoll. ... Image File history File linksMetadata Download high resolution version (2529x2708, 2983 KB)Table of architecture, Cyclopaedia, 1728, volume 1 http://digicoll. ... 1913 advertisement for Encyclopædia Britannica. ... Architectural history studies the evolution and history of architecture across the world through a consideration of various influences- artistic, socio-cultural, political, economic and technological. ... Mesopotamia refers to the region now occupied by modern Iraq, and parts of eastern Syria, southeastern Turkey, and southwest Iran. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ... Marcus Vitruvius Pollio (born ca. ...

An architectural historian may intepret architecture from a wide variety of viewpoints. Like any other form of historical study, architectural history is subject to the limitations and potentialities of history as a discipline. The study of architectural history reflects the philosophies prevalent at any given time, the changes that can be traced across the many editions of Sir Banister Fletcher's popular book, first published in 1889 and still in print, is a case in point. Discipline is any training intended to produce a specific character or pattern of behaviour, especially training that produces moral, physical, or mental development in a particular direction. ... The Gillette Factory on the Great West Road, Brentford, Middlesex. ...

One major difference in the purpose of the history of architecture to history in other disciplinary groups is that this history is often used in the practice of contemporary architecture and its study influences what is thought to be good in a given age; in addition, understanding architectural history as a history which deals with the formal remains of the past - buildings - as a way of understanding the society and culture they represent can prove a useful and enriching approach when working as a contemporary architect or looking at ancient, modern and contemporary buildings as a user or visitor. They allow an architect or a non-professional to begin to consider a building or city as more than a visual phenomenon, and therefore to have a more fundamental and culturally inclusive approach to architecture than an approach based purely on taste.

The study of architectural history has developed mainly in the West and this has resulted in a detailed knowledge of Western architecture in its historical context, while Non-Western architecture is often studied with less regard to historical development. Western colonialism has played a part in determining how Non-Western architecture is viewed. The term Western world, the West or the Occident (Latin occidens -sunset, -west, as distinct from the Orient) [1] can have multiple meanings dependent on its context (e. ... It has been suggested that Benign colonialism be merged into this article or section. ...


Pre-Graeco-Roman Period

Mesopotamia and the earliest known cities and settlements

The Ancient world

Herodotus and Greek theory

Pliny the Elder

Pliny the Elder's Naturalis historia ("Natural History"), written in the 1st century AD, contains in Book 36 a disertation on building stone with descriptions of important acrhitectural works such as the Pyramids and the Cretan Labyrinth. Pliny the Elder: an imaginative 19th Century portrait. ... This is about the polyhedron. ... A Roman mosaic picturing Theseus and the Minotaur. ...






Age of Enlightenment

The application and use of terms and style names

Baroque, Moorish, Gothic, Plateresque, Hindoo etc.

The Grand Tour


19th century

In the 19th century, architecture was understood as formal perspective, emphasizing the morphological characteristics of form, technique and materials. This period also saw the emergence of the individual architect, the amalgamation of whose conscious intentions would become the subject of artistic movements. In these respects, architectural history is a sub-discipline of art history that focuses on the historical evolution of principles and styles in the design of buildings and cities. Alternative meaning: Nineteenth Century (periodical) (18th century — 19th century — 20th century — more centuries) As a means of recording the passage of time, the 19th century was that century which lasted from 1801-1900 in the sense of the Gregorian calendar. ... It has been suggested that this article be split into multiple articles accessible from a disambiguation page. ... This article is about the academic discipline of art history. ... This article or section does not cite any references or sources. ...

John Ruskin

The Cambridge Camden Society etc

Banister Fletcher and the comparative method

20th century

Nikolaus Pevsner

Post-modern theories

In the 1960's Robert Venturi and others argued that the academic elitism of the modern movement had distanced architecture from communicating with the people it claimed to serve. Under the pressures of post-modern pluralism, recent theorists have tried to open architecture to a wide variety of new interpretations. New linguistic theories were popular in the mid-1990s and attempted to "read" architectural elements as an autonomous language, contributing to the ongoing Critical Theory project. The work of Hermeneutics constitutes another perspective on architectural history, and centres on the situational nature of architecture as understood phenomenological. Although both approaches identify architecture as a sort of language, they differ on the terms of reference; Critical Theory is largely self-referential, whilst Hermeneutics is contextual. Robert Charles Venturi (June 25, 1925 -) is an award winning American architect. ... Postmodernism (sometimes abbreviated pomo) is a term applied to a wide-ranging set of developments in critical theory, philosophy, architecture, art, literature, and culture, which are generally characterized as either emerging from, in reaction to, or superseding, modernism. ... Linguistics is the scientific study of language, which can be theoretical or applied. ... In the humanities and social sciences, critical theory has two quite different meanings with different origins and histories, one originating in social theory and the other in literary criticism. ... Hermeneutics may be described as the development and study of theories of the interpretation and understanding of texts. ... This article is about the philosophical movement. ...

Postmodern historical narratives attempt to address the issues of Western colonialism but the scope of the subject matter denies consensus among historians. Postmodernity (also called post-modernity or the postmodern condition) is a term used by philosophers, social scientists, art critics and social critics to refer to aspects of contemporary art, culture, economics and social conditions that are the result of the unique features of late 20th century and early 21st century... It has been suggested that Benign colonialism be merged into this article or section. ...

The current climate of opportunism can be seen as a reaction to both the metaphysics of the previous theories, as well as the advance into super modernity manifest in globalization, late capitalism and neo-liberal democracy. An increasing awareness of colonialism's influence has also encouraged a re-examination of architecture in previously colonized countries and seeks to liberate its history and practice from inappropriate Western doctrines. These and other aspects have influenced architecture values and its accompanying aspects within modern architecture which has laid the foundation for different schools of thought and architectural theory as well as different practise among individual architects.[1] Plato (Left) and Aristotle (right), by Raphael (Stanza della Segnatura, Rome) Metaphysics is the branch of philosophy concerned with explaining the ultimate nature of reality, being, and the world. ... A KFC franchise in Kuwait. ... Capitalism generally refers to an economic system in which the means of production are all or mostly privately[1][2] owned and operated for profit, and in which investments, distribution, income, production and pricing of goods and services are determined through the operation of a free market. ... The term neoliberalism is used to describe a political-economic philosophy that had major implications for government policies beginning in the 1970s – and increasingly prominent since 1980 – that de-emphasizes or rejects positive government intervention in the economy, focusing instead on achieving progress and even social justice by... Postcolonial theory is a literary theory or critical approach that deals with literature produced in countries that were once, or are now, colonies of other countries. ...

Architecture timeline (dated events)

To find important architectural event(s) for any year in history, use the "search" box to enter: "#### in architecture", where #### is a year or decade, for example: This page indexes the individual year in architecture pages. ... // 250 years 1000 years - The last 250 years (fine grid) is detailed above 8000 years - The last 1000 years (fine grid) is detailed above Voorthuis - Timelines Categories: | ...

See also: 1690s in architecture, other events of 1700, the year 1710 in architecture and the architecture timeline. ... See also: 1680s in architecture, other events of the 1690s, 1700s in architecture and the architecture timeline. ... See also: 2nd century BC in architecture, other events of the 1st century BC, 1st century in architecture and the architecture timeline. ...

See also

Section of the dome of Florence Cathedral. ... Architectural history studies the evolution and history of architecture across the world through a consideration of various influences- artistic, socio-cultural, political, economic and technological. ... An architect at his drawing board, 1893 An architect is a person who is involved in the planning, designing and oversight of a buildings construction. ...


  1. ^ Holm, Ivar (2006). Ideas and Beliefs in Architecture and Industrial design: How attitudes, orientations, and underlying assumptions shape the built environment. Oslo School of Architecture and Design. ISBN 8254701741.
  • Francis Ching, Mark Jarzombek, Vikram Prakash, A Global History of Architecture, Wiley, 2006.
  • Copplestone, Trewin. (ed). (1963). World architecture - An illustrated history. Hamlyn, London.
  • Watkin, David (Sep 2005), A History of Western Architecture, Hali Publications, ISBN
  • Nuttgens, Patrick (1983), The Story of Architecture, Prentice Hall, ISBN
  • Curl, James Stevens [2006]. A Dictionary of Architecture and Landscape Architecture (Paperback), Second (in English), Oxford University Press, 880. ISBN. 

Mark Jarzombek is a US-born author and architectural historian, and (since 1995) Director of the History Theory Criticism Section of the Department of Architecture at MIT, Cambridge MA, USA. Jarzombek received his architectural training at the ETH Zurich, where he graduated in 1980. ...


  • Banham, Reyner, (1 Dec 1980) Theory and Design in the First Machine Age Architectural Press. ISBN
  • Curtis, William J. R. (1987), Modern Architecture Since 1900, Phaidon Press, ISBN-X
  • Frampton, Kenneth (1992). Modern Architecture, a critical history. Thames & Hudson- Third Edition. ISBN
  • Jencks, Charles, (1993) Modern Movements in Architecture. Penguin Books Ltd - second edition. ISBN-X
  • Pevsner, Nikolaus, (28 Mar 1991) Pioneers of Modern Design: From William Morris to Walter Gropius, Penguin Books Ltd. ISBN
  • Rattenbury, Kester "This is Not Architecture: Architecture and the Media", Routledge. ISBN

External links

  • The Roman walls of Lugo. Past, present and future Unusual promotion of a technological strength
  • Tolomeus VR Panoramas about Architectural History
  • The Society of Architectural Historians web site
  • SAHANZ The Society of Architectural Historians of Australia and New Zealand weblink
  • All about Soviet architecture in Russia.

Le Corbusiers Villa Savoye, a well known example of modern architecture Modern architecture,not to be confused with contemporary architecture, is a term given to a number of building styles with similar characteristics, primarily the simplification of form and the elimination of ornament, that first arose around 1900. ... Asheville City Hall. ... Vitebsk Railway Station one of the finest examples of Art Nouveau architecture. ... Future Systems blobitecture design for the 2003 Selfridges department store, is intended to make a statement and rejuvenate Birmingham city centre. ... Unité dHabitation, Marseille (Le Corbusier 1952) Brutalism is an architectural style that spawned from the modernist architectural movement and which flourished from the 1950s to the 1970s. ... Constructivist architecture was a form of modern architecture that flourished in the Soviet Union in the 1920s and early 1930s. ... The Sydney Opera House - designed to evoke the sails of yatchs in Sydney harbour Critical regionalism is an approach to architecture that strives to counter the placelessness and lack of meaning in Modern Architecture by using contextual forces to give a sense of place and meaning. ... De Stijl redirects here. ... Libeskinds Imperial War Museum North in Manchester comprises three apparently intersecting curved volumes. ... Expressionist architecture occurs in architecture when an architect distorts a building or design for an emotional effect. ... Functionalism, in architecture, is the principle that architects should design a building based on the purpose of that building. ... Perspective drawing from La Citta Nuova by SantElia, 1914. ... The Space Needle, built for Seattles 1962 Worlds Fair GoogIe (with a capital i) redirects here. ... An architecture style developed in the 1970s, High Tech Architecture got its name from High Tech: The Industrial Style and Source Book for The Home, a book published in 1978 by Joan Kron and Suzanne Slesin. ... The Weissenhof Estate in Stuttgart, Germany (1927) The Weissenhof Estate in Stuttgart, Germany (1930) The International style was a major architectural trend of the 1920s and 1930s. ... Jugendstil is defined as a style of architecture or decorative art similar to Art Nouveau, popular in German-speaking areas of Europe during the late 19th and early 20th centuries [1]. Jugendstil was also popular in the Nordic countries, where it became integrated with the National Romantic Style. ... Modernisme in Catalan, (not to be confused with modernism) is the Catalan variant of Art Nouveau. ... Walter Gropius Bauhaus, Dessau For the literary and artistic aspects of this movement, see New Objectivity. ... Fallingwater by Frank Lloyd Wright Organic architecture is a philosophy of architecture which promotes harmony between human habitation and the natural world through design approaches so sympathetic and well integrated with its site that buildings, furnishings, and surroundings become part of a unified, interrelated composition. ... It has been suggested that Prairie Houses be merged into this article or section. ... 1000 de La Gauchetière, with ornamented and strongly defined top, middle and bottom. ... Bathers building, now a Maritime Museum at San Franciscos Aquatic Park, 1937, evokes a streamlined double–ended ferryboat Judges tower at San Franciscos Aquatic Park The Bauhaus style, also kown as Art Moderne, the International Style or Streamline Moderne succeeded the closely related Art Deco style... Sustainable architecture applies techniques of sustainable design to architecture. ...

  Results from FactBites:
Architectural History and Historic Preservation Division (447 words)
The Architectural History and Historic Preservation Division (AHHP) was organized in 1986 to act as curator of the Smithsonian's diverse campus of buildings.
(b) Historic Preservation--using the architectural history as a base, the division is responsible for preservation of the Smithsonian's historic structures, many of which are local and national landmarks.
As the curator of the Smithsonian buildings and their architectural history, the Architectural History and Historic Preservation Division maintains records about the buildings.
Architectural history - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (2090 words)
Architectural history, like any other form of historical knowledge, is subject to the limitations and potentialities of history as a discipline.
In these respects, architectural history is a subdiscipline of art history that focuses on the historical evolution of principles and styles in the design of buildings and cities.
The establishment of architectural history as a discipline in the West is reflected in the greater historical clarity of western architectural development, whilst the understanding of non-western architecture often proceeds with less historical context.
  More results at FactBites »



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