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Three Millennia of Greek Literature
 

F. B. Tarbell, A History of Ancient Greek Art

Greek Architecture

The Doric order

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Page 2

In some early Doric temples, as the one at Assos in Asia Minor, there is no entasis. The channels or flutes in our typical column are twenty in number. More rarely we find sixteen; much more rarely larger multiples of four. These channels are so placed that one comes directly under the middle of each face of the capital. They are comparatively shallow, and are separated from one another by sharp edges or arrises. The capital, though worked out of one block, may be regarded as consisting of two parts – a cushion- shaped member called an echinus, encircled below by three to five annulets, and a square slab called an abacus, the latter so placed that its sides are parallel to the sides of the building. The architrave is a succession of horizontal beams resting upon the columns. The face of this member is plain, except that along the upper edge there runs a slightly projecting flat band called a taenia, with regulae and guttae at equal intervals; these last are best considered in connection with the frieze. The frieze is made up of alternating triglyphs and metopes. A triglyph is a block whose height is nearly twice its width; upon its face are two furrows, triangular in plan, and its outer edges are chamfered off. Thus we may say that the triglyph has two furrows and two half-furrows; these do not extend to the top of the block. A triglyph is placed over the center of each column and over the center of each intercolumniation. But at the corners of the buildings the intercolumniations are diminished, with the result that the corner triglyphs do not stand over the centers of the corner columns, but farther out. Under each triglyph there is worked upon the face of the architrave, directly below the taenia, a regula, shaped like a small cleat, and to the under surface of this regula is attached a row of six cylindrical or conical guttae. Between every two triglyphs, and standing a little farther back, there is a square or nearly square slab or block called a metope. This has a flat band across the top; for the rest, its face may be either plain or sculptured in relief. The uppermost member of the entablature, the cornice, consists principally of a projecting portion, the corona, on whose inclined under surface or soffit are rectangular projections, the so-called mutules (best seen in the frontispiece), one over each triglyph and each metope.


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