The Discovery of Piranesi's Final Project
Stephen Lauf

circa 30 to 15 BCE
The lanes and streets of the city being set out, the choice of sites for the convenience and use of the state remains to be decided on; for sacred edifices, for the forum, and for other public buildings. If the place adjoin the sea, the forum should be placed close to the harbour: if inland, it should be in the centre of the town. The temples of the gods, protectors of the city, also those of Jupiter, Juno, and Minerva, should be on some eminence which commands a view of the greater part of the city. The temple of Mercury should be either in the forum, or, as also the temple of Isis and Serapis, in the great public square. Those of Apollo and Father Bacchus near the theatre. If there be neither amphitheatre nor gymnasium, the temple of Hercules should be near the circus. The temple of Mars should be out of the city, in the neighbouring country. That of Venus near to the gate. According to the regulations of the Hetrurian Haruspices, the temples of Venus, Vulcan, and Mars should be so placed that those of the first not be in the way of contaminating the matrons and youth with the influence of lust; that those of Vulcan be away from the city, which would consequently be freed from the danger of fire; the divinity presiding over that element being drawn away by the rites and sacrifices performing in his temple. The temple of Mars should be also out of the city, that no armed frays may disturb the peace of the citizens, and that this divinity may, moreover, be ready to preserve them from their enemies and the perils of war.
Marcus Vitruvius Pollio, de Architectura, Book I, chapter 7, paragraph 1.

5 January 313
Constantine is starting to get ready to leave Rome, and leave his mother and mother-in-law behind. As Augustus of the entire western half of the Empire, Constantine is now the definitive soldier-politician, and definitively not yet a Christian. Helena and, perhaps even more Eutropia, know, however, that ending the persecution of Christians, and even sanctioning Christianity, is the best, and indeed easiest way to "keep the peace," and even manifest more soldiers of the peace. Hence, the paradigm shifting architectures of closely related imperials.
This is a whole new history based on what is already known, via texts, artifacts and edifices, and, just as importantly, on all the lacunae therein.

5 January 1778   Monday
. . . . . .

5 January 1783

Theater section along the orchestra entrance. Cross section of the theater and the stable scene.
Figure I. Cutaway view of the Theater along the Orchestra entrances
Figure II. Cross section of the Theater and the Stabile Scene
Figure I. A. Plan of the Portico surrounding the Scene. B. Entrances of the Orchestra with a plane inclined to the same, decorated with Pilastri fluted with a stick, and painted from the ground up to the middle of red. C. Gates of communication with the Stairs, which ascended to the Corridore dé Vomitorj. D. Orchestra gates, under the Tribunals. E. Piano of the Orchestra. F. Low steps in the same for the Sedie dé Nobili. G. Division podium at the Orchestra, and at the first precinct of the Gradini. H. Steps for Spectators. I. Courts. K. Scalette dé Cunei dé Gradini. L. Vomitorj, and Doors for the said Scalette. M. Runner of communication to said with doors to the second precinct. N. Second precinct. O. Steps nor wedges of the second precinct for women. P. Vomitorj of it. Q. Shelf at the top of the Theater, where the Women's Servants were located, decorated with bronze statues. R. Pedestals of the Equestrian Statues, which interrupt the Steps. S. Scaletta, which from the indicated corridor rose to the d.o shelf. T. Other at the Vomitorio Figure II. A. Public road with substructure. B. Plan of the Portico behind the Scene. C. Clothing. D. Stable scene. E. Passage nor lateral Proscenj. F. Pulpit table. G. Compartment under the saying, where the machines of the mobile Scene moved. H. Substruction wall to the Travi del Palco, which abut the Stabile Scena. I. Orchestra door with the following mutilated inscription found there. L.ANIVS. MAMMIANVS. RVFVS. IIIR. QVINQ. THEATR. ORCHES. K. Steps for the Nobles. L. First pre-fence with Podium. M. Gradinato de Spectatori. N. Scaletto de Cunei. O. Court. P. Steps before the Tribunal for Scribes, and Magistrate Notaries. In the first of which was placed the statue of N. NONIO. M.F. BALBO. PR. PRO. COS. ERCVLANENSES.Q. Steps behind the Tribunal for Lictors, and Servi Publica. R. Solaro supported by Travi of the transit in the Tribunal S. Vomitorj T. Corridore à same. V. Arched rooms, which form the second external tier of the theatre. X. Second precinct with Gradini, and its parts, already demonstrated above. Y. Porticoes inside the Theater for entertainment of the People. Z. Substructure rooms on the steps of the Theater for the convenience of resellers of food, confectionery and fruit.
Francesco Piranesi dis. and inc.

5 January 1812   Sunday

Wind moderated. Morning fair, Therm. 32° rose to 37°. My eyes too much inflamed to go out. My wife and Hannah went to Meeting where Dr. Lukens gave them a packet from SL containing letters and newspapers, he [SL] and my son Samuel are both indisposed. In the papers we have several melancholy details from several quarters. The gale wind in the night of 23/24th last month have done great damage by sea and land ... ..... to the eastward have stopped the ...... for several days, .... Boston many vessels and lives lost in Long Island Sound, Delaware & Chesapeake Bays, etc. On the 26th the theater at Richmond took fire, during the afterpiece[?] 6 or 700 principal people of the city and vicinity in it, of whom it is supposed 200 were burnt or killed in attempts to escape thru high windows, etc. A very distressful scene as described in several letters published. The inhabitants have bought the ground on which it stood to erect a church upon, and have resolved to attend no more spectacles for the space of four months! Alarming earthquakes have terrified the inhabitants on the 16th and 17th last month from Charleston SC and other places near the sea coast, as far westward as Chilicothe and Zansburgh, State of Ohio. While in both Houses of Congress war is called for by apparently large majorities of both houses. This has been the stillest day here since 23rd last month. We dined alone.

5 January 2012
Ury, now quondam, exactly 200 years ago
2012.01.05 Thursday
Finished chapter 3 of Whispering City: Rome and its Histories. Called Pat and we’re tentatively set for Saturday, the 21st. Scan/dxf of Basilica Marcellus & Peter, Circus of Maxentius, Circus Varianus/Santa Croce, Basilica at Santa Costanza, Basilica of St. Laurence, Basilica of St. Sebastian. So far just seeing the plans at the same scale relative to each other and relative to plans of other 4th century/Constantinian buildings has made the effort worthwhile. Stopped at the mailbox before heading to Rosa. As George got out of the Jeep to deposit the letter, I turned to my left to look at where Ury House once was. There’s absolutely nothing there now to relate to regarding Miers Fisher, but I nonetheless tried to concentrate on the fact that exactly 200 years ago Miers was right there with sore eyes, probably didn’t go out of the house all day (except to check the temperature and wind), and passed the time reading letters and newspapers. At night I (re)read “The Iconography of the Emperor Maxentius’ Buildings in Via Appia.” Again, there seems to be no knowledge of the Circus of Hadrian (at Rome). It’s now clear that "De Spectaculis II" begins with collecting all I can on the Circus of Hadrian.
Read the passages in Halloway regarding the "circus" reenactment theory.

St. Lawrence

St. Sebastian

5 January 2013
5 January
Finally piecing together a study model of the Working Title Museum 002...

The roof plan becomes the paving pattern of the ground level/courtyard...

5 January 2015

5 January 2021

book spread painting 008

5 January 2023   Thursday
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