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The View from the Concave Stair: Recent Literature on Renaissance Architecture and Architectural Writing

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ConcinaEnnio. A History of Venetian Architecture. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1998. 362 pp. illus, bibl, index. $75. ISBN: 0-521-57338-6.

CowlingDavid. Building the Text: Architecture as Metaphor in Late Medieval and Early Modern France. (Oxford Modern Languages and Literature Monographs.) Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1998. ix + 245 pp. append, bibl, index. $75. ISBN: 0-19-815959-5.

HartVaughan and HicksPeter, eds. Paper Palaces: The Rise of the Renaissance Architectural Treatise. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1998. xii + 441 pp. append, bibl, index. $45. ISBN: 0-300-07530-8.

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  20 November 2018

Charles Burroughs*
Binghamton University
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Review Essay
Copyright © Renaissance Society of America 2000


1 I owe all I know about Quito cathedral to a lecture, as yet unpublished, by Tom Cummins.

2 Frommel, C. L., Ray, S., and Tafuri, Manfredo, eds., Raffaello architetto (Milan: Electa, 1984)Google Scholar. Other important recent and continuing collaborative efforts, often involving some of the same scholars, are the series of proceedings of thematic conferences of the Centre d'études supe'rieures de la Renaissance at Tours organized (and the volumes edited) by Jean Guillaume; exhibitions organized by Henry Millon and others on Renaissance and baroque architecture, with particular attention to architectural representation and design methods; and the study of the drawings of Antonio da Sangallo conducted by C. L. Frommel, N. Adams, and others.

3 Alberti, Leon Battista, On the Art of Building in Ten Books, trans. Rykwert, Joseph, Leach, Neil, and Tavernor, Robert (Cambridge, MA and London: MIT Press, 1988).Google Scholar

4 Palladio, Andrea, The Four Books on Architecture, trans. Tavernor, Robert and Schofield, Richard (Cambridge, MA and London: MIT Press, 1997).Google Scholar

5 Carpo, M., L'architettura dell'età della stampa: oralith, scrittura, libro stampato e riproduzione meccanica dell'immagine nella storia delle teorie architettoniche (Milan: Jaca Book, 1998).Google Scholar

6 The Gothic inheritance of Renaissance and baroque French architecture is a key theme of J. M. Pérouse de Montclos, L'Architecture à la francaise (Paris: Picard, 1982). Guillaume cites the book in his bibliography but ignores it in the article.

7 See, for example, Daniel Sherer, “Tafuri's Renaissance: architecture, representation, transgression,” Assemblage 28 (1995): 34-45.

8 Cave, Terence, The Cornucopian Text: Problems of Writing in the French Renaissance (Oxford and New York: Oxford University Press, 1979)Google Scholar; Quint, David, Origin and Originality in Renaissance Literature: Versions of the Source (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1983).Google Scholar

9 Notably A. Grafton, “Panofsky, Alberti, and the ancient world,” Meaning in the Visual Arts: Views from the Outside, ed. I. Lavin (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1995) 123-30. See also Jarzombek, Mark, On Leon Baptista Alberti: His Literary and Aesthetic Theories (Cambridge, MA and London: MIT Press, 1989).Google Scholar