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Additional resources for De Architectura
It is not because this order wants beauty, antiquity (genus), or dignity of form, but because its detail is shackled and inconvenient, from the arrangement of the triglyphs, and the formation of the soffit of the corona (lacunaria). 2. It is necessary that the triglyphs stand centrally over the columns, and that the metopæ which are between the triglyphs should be as broad as high. Over the columns, at the angles of the building, the triglyphs are set at the extremity of the frieze, and not over the centre of the columns.
2. If solid ground cannot be come to, and the ground be loose or marshy, the place must be excavated, cleared, and either alder, olive, or oak piles, previously charred, must be driven with a machine, as close to each other as possible, and the intervals, between the piles, filled with ashes. The heaviest foundations may be laid on such a base. 3. When they are brought up level, the stylobatæ (plinths) are placed thereon, according to the arrangement used, and above described for the pycnostylos, systylos, diastylos or eustylos , as the case may be.
All four of these units are based on the human body: a digit (or finger) is indeed roughly the thickness of a finger; a palm is the width of the palm, which is of course four fingers; a foot is a foot; and a cubit is a forearm, from the elbow to the tip of the fingers. These measures were well nigh universal in ancient societies. ) Left at that, we would have a simple explanation of architectural metrology, that may be considered noble and “perfect”: any structure built based on these measurements can be viewed as a projection of the human body.