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The Stones of Venice

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The Stones of Venice

2.3 (1764)

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    Available in PDF Format | The Stones of Venice.pdf | Unknown
    John Ruskin
Excerpt from book: besides, many a large piece of porphyry and serpentine upon their fronts." On the opposite page I have given two of the ornaments of the palaces which so struck the French ambassador. He was right in his notice of the distinction. There had indeed come a change over Venetian architecture in the fifteenth century: and a change of some importance to us moderns: we English owe to it our St. Paul's Cathedral, and Europe in general owes to it the utter degradation or destruction of her schools of architecture, never since revived. But that the reader may understand this, it is necessary that he should have some general idea of the connection of the architecture of Venice with that of the rest of Europe, from its origin fonvards. § XVII. All European architecture, bad and good, old and new, is derived from Greece through Rome, and coloured and perfected from the East. The history of architecture is nothing but the tracing of the various modes and directions of this derivation. Understand this, once for all: if you hold fast this great connecting clue, you may string all the types of successive architectural invention upon it like so many beads. The Doric and the Corinthian orders are the roots, the one of all Romanesque, massy-capitaled buildings—Norman, Lombard, Byzantine, and what else you can name of the kind: and the Corinthian of all Gothic, Early English, French, German, and Tuscan. Now observe: those old Greeks gave the shaft: Rome gave the arch : the Arabs pointed and foliated the arch. The shaft and arch, the frame-work and strength of architecture, arc from the race of Japheth: the spirituality and sanctity of it from Ismacl, Abraham, and Shem. § Xvra. There is high probability that the Greek received his shaft system from Egypt: but I do not care to keep this earlier...  
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  • PDF | 360 pages
  • John Ruskin
  • General Books LLC
  • Unknown
  • 4
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