Building Knowledge to Fortify City and Soul Open Access

Somenzi, Laura Maria (2016)

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Between 1475 and 1490, the Sienese polymath, Francesco di Giorgio (1439-1501), composed two treatises on the art of architecture and engineering, now known as the Trattati di architettura ingegneria e arte militare. This paper considers two manuscript copies of Francesco's first treatise, codices Saluzzo 148 (c. 1482-1486) and Ashburnham 361(c. 1480-1482). The pages of the Saluzzo and Ashburnham codices combine machines, tools, building schemes, architectural elements, small topographic portraits of buildings in landscapes, and human bodies, which are alternately analogized to church and city plans or divided into units of measurement, in a building project the character and goals of which demand careful analysis. By addressing the pictorial and textual material in the pages of Francesco's first treatise this paper aims to understand how Francesco, his scribes and illuminators, create a mechanism for accessing and transmitting knowledge for building and protecting city, church, and fortress and by analogy, body, soul, and intellect.

Table of Contents

Introduction, 1

Copying and Translation, 8

Embodied Knowledge, 15

Discrezione and Analogy, 25

Conclusions, 31

Appendix I, 34

Works Cited, 37

Figures, 40

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