UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA
PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
PROFESSOR OF ARCHITECTURE AT THE ROYAL ACADEMY OF ARTS
NEW AND ENLARGED
(UNIVERSITY) OF J
HEAD-MASTER OF THE IUACCLE9FIELD SCHOOL OF ART
CHARLES SCRIBNER'S SONS
LONDON & BUNGAY.
but they are embedded in lectures on other subjects. it contained some doubtful passages. had
Last year Mr. Ward's book on The Elementary Principles of Ornament was sent me. Having
written the original Syllabus on the Principles of Ornament. but as I thought it would be unfair to Mr. I was disposed to write a text-book. in fact I know of no book where the subjects treated show such keen observation and profound
knowledge. In writing the new
not other avocations prevented me. Ward for me to write a text-book after
Syllabus this year I could not recommend it for a text-book as it stood. and the book has no index. so the
necessary information could only be picked up by extensive reading and independent observation.EDITOR'S PREFACE
on the Principles of Ornament at
the Science and Art Department. and these are not to be expected from young students. and being printed from a course of lectures it was a little too discursive. and though it was a useful book and had a glossary.
Certain parts of the subject have been admirably by Moody in his Lectures and Lessons on
Art. I found there was no good English text-book on the subject.
Siamese. Assyrians. Buddhists. Burmese. Hebrews. and have not Ogham.
musical comparisons as
revised his views on
the trouble he had taken. nor those on
the symbolic ornament of the Egyptians.
. and Runic. Japanese.
GEORGE AITCHISON. and Brahmins. I consented to edit a new I may here say that I have left Mr. Ward's edition.
not only to carvers and modellers who have to execute enrichments on Architecture.
retain the greatest purity of form. or Greeks dictation. used them lavishly
parts of the Greek
TO THE SECOND EDITION
substance. so as to
. and adapted them.
carefully revised the I have also
book without altering added an Appendix
containing a few remarks on the Orders of Architecture.
while the Romans.x>#
(UNIVERSITY. with illustrations of some of the best classical
examples believing that this would be useful. while from the
. figure sculpture apart.
and Roman show how two cognate
but of an
and used them
the most sparing
. abstracted the beauties of conferred them on stone and marble
to emphasize and adorn the rigid forms of Archihow the Greeks seized on the exquisite tecture beauties of flowers.
plants. but to all students.
and eventually were so procure magnificence with their ornament as to defeat the end in prodigal
view. as little of the architecture was left plain to act as a foil to the enrichment.
has added several illustrations which
shows him will be useful to students. The great art of the present day seems to consist in copying nature as exactly as it can be copied in hard but in materials to make a colourable imitation of floral
EDITOR'S PREFACE TO SECOND EDITION
quantity employed no time could be spared to perfect the ornament.
. and he has added an Appendix on the construction of some geometrical figures.
GEORGE AITCHISON. and the methods of drawing conic sections and spirals.
of abstracting and applying the beauties form seems now to be entirely lost.
highest beauties are
under the title of Elementary Principles of Ornament. this belief is shared me by many of the principal art masters in the
country. there are none that exclusively treat of the theory.R. and did SG ever.AUTHOR'S PREFACE
IN the preface to the first edition of this book.
gratified to find that the
book received a
favourable recognition from the authorities of Science and Art Department. howadvised to publish them. and by many gentlemen whose names stand high in the list of decorative artists.
The present edition has been edited and revised by Professor Aitchison.. A. the Government Examiner in the subject and Professor of Architecture at
Royal Academy. Although there are many excellent text-books on ornament
published at the present time. strongly
without any attempt 'at revision. These lectures were not originally intended for publication. judging from the
received after the
publication of the
edition. or what is known as
the "principles of ornament". I was.
. I stated that the contents consisted of a series of class
lectures given to art students.A.
The illustrations must only be accepted as black-
grateful thanks for his invaluable services in connection with the book. and. Esq.I. a few that appeared in the
. for his valuable suggestions to me in the chapter on symbolic ornament. they are merely intended as aids in explanation of the text more illustrations have been added to this edition.R. the thanks of all students in Professor Aitchison has also written
WARD. S. I am sure
desire to record
wish here also to express my best thanks to John Vinycomb.
former edition have been
and Shaded Ornament
Definition of Arabesques
. Relieved. and
Methods of Expression OutColoured. Flat.
The Greek Honeysuckle. Walls.
BY THE EDITOR
of Composition in
Ornament enumerated and
The Shapes and Decoration of Mouldings Fluted and Reeded Ornament Treatment of Floors.
of the Acan.
Raphael's Arabesques Christian Symbolism son of Symbolic and Esthetic Ornament
APPENDIX ON THE ORDERS OF ARCHITECTURE
A CHAPTER ON THE
CONSTRUCTION OF FIGURES AND CURVES IN PRACTICAL PLANE GEOMETRY
Modern Use and Treatment
. and on Flat
thus... . of Planes and of Large Flat Surfaces Abuses of Purely Natural Forms applied to Articles of Use Application of Ornament and Materials in
Six Classes or Great Divisions of
Application of Plants in Ornament
Used Use by
the Ancients in Capitals......
.. Candelabra.... .xiv
Outline and Division of Surfaces
Proportion of Rectangular Surfaces Spacing and Decoration of CirDecoration of Various cular and Curved Objects
The Symbolic and Mnemonic
Acanthus. sixteenth century
Border. Acanthus leaf (Greek).
Book-cover (German). from nature Acanthus..... olive-leaf variety... with flowers from a capital of
Acanthus (Mollis). 119
140. modern varieties of sea-weed and poppyleaved Acanthus Acanthus..141
... from a capital of Mars
156. soft-leaved.. Greek Borders of Medallions in enamelled earthenware by Luca Delia Robbia Borders.
Borders.^3t L ^i/4/Jju^x^ ^v OF THE
INDEX OF ILLUSTRATIONS
FIGS. &c.. from a capital of the Tower of the Winds. olive-leaf variety. upright
lily. Astragal or bead moulding. from the soffit of the architrave
of Jupiter Stator
. from a Roman capital . Persian Borders derived from the laurel Bracts used for " clothing" stems in Scrolls. with its ornament
154. from nature Acanthus (Spinosus).158
Arrangement of a wall-paper pattern Arrangements for wall-paper or room decoration. Acanthus used on candelabra and small pillars Acanthus. improper .. 157
Acanthus leaf (Greek).
....... Italian.. oak-leaf..:. showing a portion of
.... Greek Doric Capital...... Entablature of the Caryatid portico attached to the
. Greek Corinthian Capital.107... Saracenic
portion from the vestibule
INDEX Or ILLUSTRATIONS
. from Sta...
ornament composed of the acan.
'. Sophia at Constantinople.
Roman Doric Roman Ionic . panelling of..-... and its ornament . Saracen
proper division at
an improper and
Checkers.. Door case at the Erechtheum.110 100 Diaper. Entablature of the Erechtheum .. showing at at B a proper arrangement
98. ornament derived from Contrasting decoration on rectangular and circular
Counter-change Counter-change pattern... Capital.
. Greek Ionic Capital. German origin. ..181
Diaper.... convolvulus and wild rose Circle. showing bossing out of ornament
A. .:. sixteenth century . . .
...... sixteenth century 107 Diaper. Persian influence.
Capital. with the paterae on the fascia illustrating improper division at
Capitals (Byzantine). sixteenth century 106.. Roman Tuscan
180... explained at
Ceiling... thus. 64.
58. reversa and its ornaments. fillings of
Ceilings. Roman Corinthian Roman Composite
Cinque. Diaper. See Ogee...
in Christian art
63... with its ornaments
Laurel from nature
Theatre of Marcellus Temple of Fortuna Virilis
Entablature of the Pantheon. ..
.... . Ogee.
Fluted ornaments for
..INDEX OF ILLUSTRATIONS
Entablature of the Entablature of the Entablature of the Entablature of the Entablature of the
.. Greek Ogee with water-leaf ornament from the Erechtheum Ogee. Roman variety.Roman
Parthenon . ... Rome Entablature of Jupiter Tonans Entablature of the Arch of Titus
.... Ogee. "Jiu" or long
173... profiles of Roman
Network. profiles of Greek Mouldings. Greek Ionic Temple on the
Inscription from an Egyptian tablet Inscription (Japanese). Roman .
..... or swag Finger-plates of different outlines
. Japanese decoration Japanese decoration.
.. badge of the Empire of Japan
.45... Cinque-Cento Pilaster decoration. &c. 160
Pilaster...... examples of
. .. teenth century
103. Frontispiece Pear-tree. .. Rome
Ovolo. composed of leaf and floral forms
INDEX OF ILLUSTRATIONS
of cane and ornamented with
.. illustrating balance without symmetry Panel. from the Erechtheum. Renaissance Panel (Venetian)... winter aspect.
Spandrel (Gothic)... Patera .. enriched
....... Kent Spandrel. 105
. . 146 Panel arrangement from the tiger-lily 148 143 Paperhanging.. illustrating "balance" in .....
.. Root forms.. from Stone Church.
103. . 105
Powdering... design from the wild rose .... in silver repousse work. .. Cinque-Cento ..41.. Reeded ornaments for flat bands..... . nature . Egyptian symbolic form Scroll ornament on the roof of the
Lysikrates Shield (Savage)
.. by Alfred Stevens
Spiral curves. design for a carved wood panel from the
lemon plant . Japanese
Reduction of similar ornament in different spaces . from a pavement of San Marco... Mediaeval and Oriental Rosettes (Roman).... .
84. Panel with trophy of arms and armour Panel. .. . .43. Italian
staff of the
Tiger-lily from nature Tree of life from an Assyrian bas-relief with wor-
Tripod stand on the top of the roof of the Monument
asps. sacred wheel of Brahma and Vishnu.
See Vase.INDEX OF ILLUSTRATIONS
Superimposed Japanese powdering Symbolic ornament. from the Hildesheim treasures Vases (Modern and Greek)..
lamp bottoms Tchakra. 91
Wild rose from nature
Wine-crater. Egyptian symbolic
Winged globe and
. the Egyptian lotus and water
" Tail-pieces. showing unequal divisions of the height and strengthening horizontal
90. also " wheel of fire " the
and receive a He will learn from these corresponding delight.
advanced to study with advantage the best examples art."
. studies to reverence the artists and to admire the
not be amiss to point out the advantages of studying ornamental art even to those who do
to be artists. but that the grace of the plants As soon as he is sufficiently has evaporated.
illustrations of plants are near enough to the originals to be unmistakable. he will find out the difficulties the ornamentalists have overcome in applying the great beauties of nature to works of art and will then take a deeper interest in these masterpieces.
art is the mirror of
. geometry. is to draw or
model plants and to
him in a cursory view the more his admiration
. how many to miss.
after acquiring the necessary
course to be adopted.
nation that produced them a nation's civilization. and as he progresses he will find out beauties which have escaped
be excited by those subtle beauties he finds so hard to render and so easy The student will then notice.
the student accurately acquainted with the forms of plants and of their parts.
the further he
The severity. the following words of Emile de Laveleye.
animal forms. find the best kind of alleviation for his hard condition. in his book on Luxtrty. but though we must all live.
art. unfortunately deters amateurs.
isle. will have more weight " Might not the man of the people. though the
figure. a rain of gold will fall
rain which falls on any and the fine arts are ena shower of pure and disinterested
tempted to say something on the prospects of ornamental art. however. 'In the day when the Rhodians shall erect an altar to Minerva. so that their
short of the excel-
lence of the
Italians. from learning to draw the
only attained when there are many educated lovers of it. and not unfrequently ornamentalists. of the requisite become a figure draughtsman. Nothing in this world can be had without paying for it. and
artist by their judicious admiration. on whom the
people when couraged . For twenty years I have pointed out that Nature offers her beauties gratuitously to mankind for its solace and delight perhaps.
curse of matter weighs with so heavy a load.
a knowledge of the skeleton and
have spoken only of
ornament. if his eyes were open to what Leonardo da Vinci calls la
the beautiful things of the earth ? Pindar says. who can appreciate a beautiful creation. however.
who were above
things figure greatly aid the
who have devoted
their lives to the creation of
to the delight they give and the admiration they excite. unless he be rewarded
art. and not that which is commonNovelty in art is not an absolute place or ugly. not even those of its
past excellence for the student
builds on. look
rewards. charmed it is true that it gets novelty.
did. and it is not to be believed that artists would not elaborate something new and beautiful
from all the knowledge they have gained.
jumble of discordant
scraps. if there were a passionate desire for it among the people. than to mere pecuniary
the beautiful. but it should want beautiful novelty.
or merely asks for a Novelty we must needs
have. for that is sure to be bad.
nature and of
attain this a profound study
. This can never be so long as the public is content
with paraphrases of deceased
never devote his talents to an
toil requisite to
and undergo the ceaseless
beauty. but only that difference and that improvement which one instructed generation can give to the
tastes of former days.
therefore necessary artist. difference from what has gone before.
praise of real
boast " that
it. and hopes to
in the beauties of
art will ever flourish unless there are
educated and enthusiastic admirers of
pieces. for this generation does not inherit the precise
immediate and it is this generation that wants to be predecessor.
we cannot as yet " love the beautiful
we can hardly expect
to rival those
we do who
The whole ornamental
of the world
as Sir Joshua Reynolds said. Byzantine.
Much of this work is flabby or wire-drawn.
knowledge and invention admirable draughtsmanship
requisite. by its abstraction. The highest ornament. or Saracenic sources.
we have nothing but Roman.
and it one of the greatest marks of genius.
is not congenial to our taste. is closely allied to architectural art. but even when the beauty of the plant is not left out.
and the framework. or Gothic ornamental art is mostly too barbaric
or too realistic to suit us.
. to make them fit their places. Byzantine. feelings. for. and
infinitely below the highest flights of which the artist had absorbed the graces of floral growth and had properly applied them. We one complete system of decorative art that only an entirely new direction besides Gothic. in
of nature and the masterpieces of former art are " wanted. while all its higher achievements
must be founded on precedent art. conversant with the inventions of others by being " while to express our that we learn to invent
. Natural foliage arranged on a basis makes a poor contrast to noble
All ornamental arts> that are not realistic imita-
architecture. except when it is borrowed from Roman. and harmonizes with its architecture the Saracenic
are in conjunction with architecture consequently there should be a harmony between the decoration
consists in twisting or arranging certain plants into the shape required. and often omits the highest beauty of the plants it uses.
which gives the
experience and skill of a lifetime by a few lines or touches and this art is more calculated to'captivate
. though it is not probable that it materially differed from the ecclesiastical
it was Roman art modified by the and by Greek and Oriental taste. in religion which saints and martyrs. genius take him where it will. by the means before mentioned. and have been transfused into ornament by the alembic of his mind such ornament
. however. and the traces of painting.INTRODUCTORY CHAPTER
. can. or Renaissance art have neither the centuries of experience nor the
cultivated public. Little of secular
Byzantine art remains.
while the Renaissance was an attempted
Roman. with their attributes or symbols.
. painting on vases. this consolation for every true artist
. There is. However. and he can be sincere he can give us those beauties from nature that have
. too. Every artist.
be sure to find some congenial spirits to admire it and I think I may say that a public sufficiently cultivated to appreciate real art is gradually being formed. there will even now be ample
recognition of the creations of
sincere. be sure of having conquered
the preliminaries of his art.
. incised work. The highest art is undoubtedly that which
the simplest and
perfect. Roman. moulded metal-work.
the best taste of the day than the complex or the intricate.
cannot expect to equal at once the masterwe pieces of Greek. took the place of the antique gods and
art of its period
of for ornament Renaissancejirt to fall back on Greek ornamental art we have some carved stonework.
there may be more hereafter judges who when they look at his work will say. To ensure the effect they intend. involved in the particular
example he is studying.
overlooked. and must allure the insects by the honey they distil to fertilize them so that beauty. and
. and mostly many. to those beauties of nature that have been
. great artists sometimes ignore the ordinary laws. and direct attention. of the laws and when he has clearly distinguished them. When he has done this. except in
. In this struggle the plant is often dwarfed or distorted.
for the plant a
. in after ages.
and confine myself
to such remarks as
hope may be useful to those student. he should note any divergence from the laws and endeavour to understand the reason
for it. It is well that he should consider that the main object of every plant is to live and propagate itself: to live it wants air. consideration.6
whose works remain that if there are few judges of his work now.
the colour of the flowers. when he has learnt and
comprehended the laws.
revert to the book. and
more frequently some of its parts are deformed. have been followed. moisture. and notice that every plant illustrates some. and mostly sunshine. must attract insects by their colour or scent.
satisfy himself that the laws. this is the work of a true artist and he may confer delight on unborn thousands. and nourishment. he should examine the best ornament of antiquity and the Renaissance. and it must strive to get these necessaries amidst a crowd of competitors. should observe growing plants.
carvers. This thinness is not to be got if the leaf be carved in
stone. so that
be carved. the artist
must therefore see what beauties he can abstract from the plant he has chosen or from
good ornament. and judg-
be admired. and Renais-
sance ornament. will afford ample illustrations of conupon temporary convention in its worst form. taste. while when a coarse and clumsy imitation of nature is made. that it will
of the highest sort
. or carved
. or they cease to be ornament. masons.
the lowest sort of convention. Roman.g.
Gothic ornament was quite new for no sooner did the architects. with all the beauty left
out. and shows the characteristic beauty
and vigour of plant form. and he succeeds in doing this. on the contrary. and others
. and by the use to which the object is to be put 'e.
portrayed on some should conform to the
shape of the object.
cheap speculative houses that have carving them.
consideration. a leaf may be carved in certain
This necessary abstraction
found in the best Greek.
symbolic ornament and these must have beauty.
that his design can be material to be used. carpenters. If not interfere with the use of the object. will not be easily destroyed. his skill. be governed by the quality of the material.INTRODUCTORY CHAPTER
In ornament. but then it must be preserved in a glass case.
material. almost of the thinness of the real leaf.
and flowers into the domain of
early Gothic sculptors did give a certain and in some cases even a monumental air to crispness.
ornament answered its main end. or that he has gazed on to satiety. and being able to see each figure and piece of ornament in its
place. plants. and sometimes they got that mys-
. The first touch of
the Renaissance brought a sweetness of proportion to architecture and a grace to floral ornament that is
striking. But it is one thing to have a longing. is often destitute of floral character. and another to be able
to bring plants.8
had surpassed the old world in conthan they looked down on all the old skill. that he knows and loves. or worm-eaten wigs. and would not be beholden to them.
one must desire to see his house. of giving a broken mass of light and shade to contrast with plain
terious look of infinite complexity that is found in nature.
was vigorous but some of the early Gothic foliage has no grace. as well as the Romans and Byzantines why should they not make as good statues and ornament ? There is much to be said in favour of this contention. instead of with the plants conventionalized plants of other countries that he does not know. animals. his townhis church ornamented with the flowers and hall. and flowers.
. and they had invention to a marvellous degree.
From the sculptors working on the spot. their carved flora. world arts. trees. and might be mistaken for hanks of string on pieces of firewood.
find that they
They were determined to begin afresh they had human beings.
then adopted artists. and used by the
by the Renaissance
Byzantines with a different character. and the ornament must have had some striking qualities to make it popular for why else should it have been preferred and persisted in. when so many other plants had great beauty ? There is. The egg and tongue may be cited as an instance.
the artist must have noticed some special beauties and fitness in the plant he chose.
leafage in the Wellington
. and it has been fitted to properly fill the requisite shapes. that it has been treated for ages by skilful men. continued by the Romans. however.
the ovolo. though new floral capitals may be invented. To take the acanthus first. it was started by the Greeks. nor has any good substitute for it been found. and has been treated in
an entirely novel way by Alfred Stevens in our own day.INTRODUCTORY CHAPTER
ornament has these inestimable
advantages. so that its faults have been corrected. Stevens has given a peculiarly plastic character
monument. after it has once been perfected. that improvement on the old lines is scarcely to be expected.
The Romans converted
into a floral
form at the Temple of Jupiter Tonans. That which is used in the Corinthian capital has had such an infinity of pains bestowed on it. A coarse caricature of it is still the most popular ornament of
. some ornament that. seems incapable of further improvement. From the first. The Greek honeysuckle and the acanthus are the most striking examples of good traditional ornament. new
graces have been added to it. It has never been improved since the perfecting of Greek architecture. with marked
want of success.
. Even when it was on a smaller scale. In some Byzantine buildings. as in
thing was sacrificed to was rather deficient in of the most exquisite
Romans destined it all human inventions. the parsley. the Roman capital is clear.
raffle. and dignity when it was used in colossal ticularly necessary monuments.
of the complete leaf curls over.*o
leaf. and are also thrown up by the shade in their points.
capitals. old Greek and Roman Corinthian columns have been used together. In the best examples.
we can see the advantages of the change.
substituted the olive-leaf for the natural
used but four or
. while the Greek one
a confused mass.
and the endive were occasionally
variety is the only lines ribs. and though the
oak-leaf. the upper edges of each leaflet
are mostly clear of the one above or overlap it in the first case they are thrown up by the shadow behind. distinct. these qualities being parstrength. has
been perfected to the end the
though. the edges of the hollows. As
an isolated ornament the Greek capital is greatly to be preferred. The Greek capital
outline. and dignified. and this was
by the Romans to attain distinctness. but
was possessed grace. and thus
Every portion of the
hollowed by a curve without
being those made by each leaflet is hollowed out like a cockle-shell as well. in the latter the edges of the raffles are
to its rafflings.
bright against the half light of the leaflets above. someattain it. but when the two are seen in conjunction as parts of the building.
and are deeply undercut.
perhaps but one other ornament that
radiating worthy profoundest study. so there
contrast between masses of light. than above the necking. The lower leaves are cut
through horizontally in the middle. in suckle. graduated shade. ornament of the Greeks. If examples are compared.
the bell turns inwards
do well to carefully draw a good
example. The Italian artists were. the superiority
of the parallel pipes over those that run into the stem is at once seen. and
upwards. making no). The back of the leaf was
get a wide stem. besides having the best Roman examples for their models. thus the whole leaf distinct and vigorous (Fig. while the pipes. and introduced it wherever they could do so
than the Romans. and then carve it.
too. then model it.
nearly as fond of the human figure as the Greeks. and were of finer artistic fibre
scale. for it has been the type from which most good floral capitals have been derived. are nearly
parallel with the stem. taper downwards. that come from the eyes between the leaflets. The acanthus and other floral
ornament used by the
deserve quite as
. known as the Greek honeyThis ornament is full of subtle devices. and come straight down on to the necking.INTRODUCTORY CHAPTER
shadow on the part below. which gives much more
vigour to the capital.
attention as the
ornament was not on the same colossal was done by excellent figure sculptors who had studied ornament. and graduated shadow.
The Greeks. they made some parts in bold.
enhance the value of
tained by trifling differences of level in the planes of the ornament and by gilding. are usually coarse and poor. that gives the highest value to the composition all showing the intimate acquaintance with nature that the Greek
. it is.12
the elegant graduation of its forms. too. in its even distribution. and in some of them tangential junction is distinctly avoided. When the sculptor had carved his ornament on an architectural monument " he seemed to say.
general effect of their best work resembles Greek art at the proper distance the subordinate ornament
looks like a mere difference of texture. when coloured and gilt.
The Byzantines understood the value of gradation.
. and so improved on
it. The Saracens learned
from them. a
horizontality verticality introduced.
Saracenic ornament affords the only instances of complete floral decoration without the figures of
it is inclined to be forms are too pregeometrical dominant.
artists possessed. Its floral forms. This effect is ob.
. and when they wholly ornamented a profile. Many of the Greek running patterns are both original and effective. saved from monotony by the magical change of the patterns on the beholder shifting his position. " Better this if you can
too. and have no refined graces.
were pre-eminent in knowing the use of restraint and the value of plainness. some in low relief. and in the
making of the
one another. and engraved or sunk other parts. however. to attract attention to the ornament. in the proportioning of the masses.
out ornament to catch the light. pilasters (Figs. Mark's the leaves of capitals caught by the wind and blown
aside. and doubtless the silversmiths in working them hammered out some
bosses to catch the light.
Capitals with a similar device existed in Sta. had the capitals of the sanctuary columns made of silver.
There are cases where architectural features have and at the same time to be emphasized No better example of this is to be found than too. when
he has the industry to observe and the talent to
when the ornament is not on a supporting I point it out to show what fresh resources ornamentalist are to be found in nature. i. and yet was wanted to be important
to be reduced. Ruskin at St. I may also draw attention to another
device. when he had the Church of the Holy
that was. only used by the Byzantines.
Sophia at Salonica. in the Caryatid temple attached to the Erechtheum.
propriety of using such an incident in the conventional stone ornaments of a
supporting member may be doubted. This device was seized on by the sculptors of Sta.
marble capitals of
Sepulchre at Jerusalem built. Its entablature was below the main one.e. Constantine bossing the Great.INTRODUCTORY CHAPTER
There are a few points not touched on
be well to mention.
I think. Sophia at Constantinople.
Byzantine which charmed Mr. and so had to be smaller. some of which were partly calcined
fire. still we must admire the observation and genius of the sculptor and there are many opportunities of using such an
A and B. Sophia at Constantinople.
Byzantine Capitals from Sta. showing the bossing out of the ornament.
Entablature of the Erechtheum.
of the Caryatid portico of the Erechtheum.
and weighty enough for the figures. All the frieze but the capping was consequently left out, the top fascia of the architrave was enriched with circular
and between the cappings of the architrave a deep dentil band was introduced. Mainly these means the due effect was gained (Figs. C by and D), Ornament has sometimes to be repeated in a composition on a smaller scale, and this should not be done by merely reducing the scale so as to have
a diminutive reproduction, but by keeping the general form of the ornament with fewer details. Several ex-
amples maybe found in M.Mayeux's book. Instances of the same motive being repeated in the same height and in a narrower width are sometimes found. An example may be seen beneath the double and single windows of an hotel in the Rue Dalbard, Toulouse 2
Reduction of similar ornament
in different spaces.
Much might be said on the subject of materials, but I will only make a few remarks. In making a
design, due consideration should be given to the material employed, so that the natural ornamentation
of one material
may not be put on another pottery turned on the wheel, and is adapted for painting, while hollow metal vessels are embossed, but it is
M. Henri Mayeux, La Composition Decorative, 8vo, Paris, s.a. See M. Cesar Daly's Motifs HiStorique^ fol, Paris, 1881.
to see pottery embossed, which can, true, be accomplished by casting or by inlaying, this sort of ornamentation always looks in-
Stone is usually of large and wood appropriate. of small scantling, yet in the front of a stone building
with arched openings the wooden door-head is often made a continuation of the stone impost, though the mouldings of the wood-work should be finer and the
Although the young student should confine his attention to the best styles, the advanced one should
have some acquaintance with all traditional ornament, even the styles of Louis XIV. and XV., a grafting of Chinese and Japanese ornament on the current classic,
fof they are the only
modern styles, except the early The same that have complete unity. Renaissance, runs through the whole building, down to the style
door furniture and the damask of the chairs
handling, too, is often admirable, and the examples are full of hints to the advanced student, who is
unlikely to be infected with the rococo style. I have dwelt much on carving for several reasons
the most lasting of ornamental work, and as a it is susceptible of the rule the most important
greatest perfection when executed in marble, and all architectural ornament must eventually fall into the
hands of the sculptor, since he has devoted his life I may add that the French architects to its study.
look upon it as the weak point in English architecture. To the young student I may say that he can never become an artist until he has mastered the
fundamental principles of his art and that nothing can deserve the name of ornament that is not both
appropriate and beautiful, and has been evolved from I would suggest to the nature by the mind of man.
the flora of the world
to the lotus, the honeysuckle, and the acanthus ; that if accident caused the original choice of these plants, it was the infinite pains bestowed on their treatment
that caused their persistence. There are, too, thousands of beauties still to be culled from plants and flowers that now remain outside the domain of art. Let the
student remember that knowledge, skill, truth, and sincerity are the main roads to real success, and that real success is, to have produced some beauty that
has captivated or will captivate mankind.
for the drawing and colour and the style of execution With the exception of frets and diapers. it must show that it has passed through the mind of man. It is the function of ornament to emphasize
the forms of the object it decorates.
the lovely sprays of plants with birds and cognate
on Japanese pottery. are good. and been acted on by it. This kind of decoration might be a literal transcript from nature.
. Decoration is not necessarily ornament for instance.THE
PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
ORNAMENTsurface object or
. It possesses an exquisite beauty of its own. but cannot in our sense of word be called ornament for however realistic the ornament may be.
the proper enrichment of an with such forms. may be called decoration.
. character. or forms
as will give the thing decorated a while strictly preserving its shape and beauty. not to hide them. and neither emphasizes the boundaries of the decorated surface nor harmonizes with them.
. and balance are indispensable. Something must be done with it before we can give
that name. The.
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
rare in Japanese art. having at the same time a due regard to
the boundary-lines of the panel.
Japanese decoration altered. I might have been made from a shadow cast on a window. while No. but we can hardly call it ornament.
2. 2 is an attempt to illustrate our notion of ornament by using the elements in Fig.
sketch at Fig. I evenly distributed. a design is pretty.
. the units of the decoration must be arranged and brought into order repetition and symmetry may not be required.
too must not appear to be accidental but designed for the object.
Such Japanese decoration on an oblong surface.
To make an ornamental design.
stance. or panels were overloaded with mouldings if forms.
as inappropriate ornament.
be used alone.
Firstly. any kind of ornament that is not suited to the surface ornamented.
be called inappropriate.
Methods of Expression.
Independent ornaments are such things as shields. 133). or with a strongly-marked series of horizontal bands or if a
. or is falsely
Numerous examples may be given of
a rule. but out of scale with one another or things were made to simulate what they are not or there were a great excess of enrichment. and in combination with applied
ornament. as in modelling and sculpture.
carpet pattern were designed to run in one particular direction or.
columns supporting nothing were used in decoration if consoles or brackets were turned upside down or if curved mouldings were decorated with frets.
outline. each of these examples might be considered
added. . .
be attached to a surface. medallions. with or without enclosing frames paterae. were used together. festoons. if
. and other loose ornamental
(Fig. organic or otherwise. or stippling.
with a point
secondly.. spotting.METHODS OF EXPRESSION
Applied ornament is that which is specially designed and fitted for the position it occupies. thirdly.
. from an architectural point of view. For inupright panels and pilasters were decorated
with ornament running in oblique lines. by
as in painting with the brush. or shading. &c. hatching.
. or sinking.
including oil-cloth enamelled glass and some sgraffito-work. and marquetry when used for other purposes inlaid marble. sectile and Alexandrine pavements damascened metal-work
. or with the forms and background picked " out in a variety of colours. All the early work of mankind.
. is a
of ornamentation. with no shading and without shadow. and Roman cistas.
Ornament Expressed by Flat Tints.
. in two shades one for the ornament and one for the back" ground.
parquetry when used for floors. and stencilled stuffs. printed.
as well as sgraffito-work when expressed by outline. and the incised work on the Greek. and
cludes painted ornament on the flat. Shaded or painted ornament in the flat is an imitation of relief work. called
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
These three divisions may be subdivided. Etruscan.
. cut in plaster showing a different-coloured plaster beneath.
be noticed again.
some enamels. in monochrome or colour. and vases come under this head
. It is convenient to class under this head certain
. both the prehistoric on bone and on pottery. tile and plaster work. i. but all the subdivisions are but varieties or combinations of the
Relief modelled or pierced orna-
ment has no other outline than that given by light and shade but it may also be coloured. mosaic. embrondered. stone. hand-mirrors. whether poly" chromatic or in " grisaille inlaid wood-work. and painted pottery woven.
Ornament Expressed in Outline. the line decoration etchings on Assyrian cylinders. bronze dishes and tablets. e.
and such compound as may be pierced. being
. fine filigree and wire.
damascened work very pretty examples may be found in old Chinese lac. in geometrical patterns. is much used by
the cabinet-makers of India
our Tunbridge ware
it. the colour was
. is too well known to need but under this heading are included description
. &c. &c. ebony. Ordinary modelled and carved work. and turned work..
to be an imitation of
Flat Tints enriched by Outline were sometimes used Greek vases. gold. or turned and carved or incised as well. velvet. Inlay under the name of "Tarsia" was greatly used by the Italians in the decoration of cathedrals and churches and in fittings and furniture in cathedral stalls and sacristy fittings. such as lace. applied work of paper. and some if not all of their figure sculpture in the round. either in relief or sunk. Greek. inlaid with figures and landscapes in black mother-of-pearl. open. but when the figures were of white marble. and
composed of white and stained ivory.
Relief-work.METHODS OF EXPRESSION
work of slight thickness or relief. and are often used in inlays and
. species of
were sometimes employed.work. but ebony and ivory were largely employed for house furniture and fittings. were coloured. and silver. ivory. different coloured woods are largely employed for the same purpose by Orientals and others. silver.
Coloured Relief-work* All Egyptian. the features.work.
Tortoiseshell. mother-of-pearl. and Mediaeval bas-reliefs. boxwood was commonly inlaid in walnut.
Roman embossed Much relief-work in
. and probably carved stone-work. as well as lac and ivory work'
and ivory and some Saracen embossed plasterMoresque work.
the figures or ornament were
white on a
the precious metals has been coloured by means of enamel.
Shaded or Painted Ornament on
Flat in Imita-
of Relief^work. mother-of-pearl. which sometimes were embroidered. including the triglyphs. In Greek temples the carved ornament was coloured. This is probably the largest class. smaller figures are wholly gilt. and to In one of the the stripes or patterns on the dresses. and hair. like the terra-cotta ones of Tanagra. as in some of the Delia
. white marble sarcophagi from Sidon. In some enamelled pottery in
is white on a purple Renaissance bas-reliefs in
and some of the ornament
ground. formed by stuffing with wadding the applied pieces. and some mosaic and pietra dura is in relief. was coloured and gilt some Burmese plaster-work in relief is gilt and inlaid with coloured glass.
relief. or alloys in the metal coloured mosaic has
been used to clothe columns.
. and includes engraving. shaded ornament in
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
generally confined to the flesh. and parts of the ornament
the uncut mouldings too were mostly ornamented in colour. eyes. now in the
at Constantinople. " gesso duro" were wholly coloured. and certain stuffs have had raised ornament upon them.
gilt. while figures of half lifeleft
wholly white. or the drapery of the figures and the ornament were coloured.
tiles. animals. Persian. or pewter.
with the metal-work engraved
tural views. carpets.
1 The chambers under Titus' baths in which the paintings were found. Giovanni Recamatore. landscapes. inter-
spersed with figures. mostly avoided the figures of men and
2 animals. and shaded painting on china and glass. of which These a knowledge. and embroidery.METHODS OF EXPRESSION
chiaroscuro. even in their secular buildings or furniture. and embroidery. architecshape
painted decoration. which consists of
. so spaces were filled with intricate geometrical patterns and coarse foliage. inlaid in
buildings. and in AraWhat we now call Arabesques were parabesques.
. which are laid over sunk (intaglio) work. . from whom the name was derived. 2 There are. cent enamels. landscapes. and foliage.
shaded ornament and figure subjects on woven or printed stuffs.
inlay in the of shaded natural flowers. tin. The culminating point in Arabesque painting was the decoration of the loggias of the Vatican by Raphael and his pupil. and painters' enamels Boule work. were originally parts of Nero's golden house. damascened work. it being feared that the portrayal of living creatures
might lead them to idolatry. The Mohammedans. or without
and shaded and coloured ornament with in it are included the cast shadows and Renaissance transluChinese. commonly known as Giovanni da Udine. figures of men and animals occasionally found in their carved wood-work. The discovery of this kind of painting in the baths of Titus
Raphael to adopt
improve on it. Mediaeval. however.
elementary forms used in ornament form the It is assumed that the space division. only alternating. a panel.
qualities of stability. firmness.
repose given by upright and horizontal lines are well illustrated by the mouldings round rectilinear panels.
have now to think of the forms and character of the ornament we propose to
adopt. 3. 3 to Fig. Taking the band or two horizontal parallel lines in Fig.
All frets are composed of straight
lines. It would be difficult to overrate the value of the straight line in
from Fig. The boundary-lines are the enclosing lines of our space or This subdividing is field. by cornices and pilasters. or a carpet. a frieze. and drawing vertical lines from these
is given that we are required to ornament for example. are the basis of
give illustrations of the
called the setting-out. which may be subdivided. either straight or curved.
. 23 are specimens of straight-lined ornaments. a ceiling. and by reeded and fluted
ornaments. a wall. we begin with
the straight line. and marking off equidistant points on the upper and on the lower one.
and 8 show further developments of the
Figs. Figs. 21. 6. 7. 13. 12. n.
obtain the basis of a large class of frets. 8. 6.
and 18 show the elements of some
Saracenic or Moresque frets.
fret. and 22 are developments.ELEMENTARY FORMS
points. of which Figs. 4. and 14
43. be used on slightly concave surfaces.
of plates or dishes
TfiE PRINCIPLES OF
concave or convex ones they may. on the ceilings of their tombs (Fig.
both singly. by radiating from the centre of the The square within square.
diamonds are other elements of
. and double and plate. (See Fig.
conjunction by the Greeks.
FIGS. such as the inside bevels
Straight-lined ornaments. 28. 16).*
. 8 to
single frets. and alternating with spirals and circular ornaments. however. and earlier by the Egyptians. 8
15.) The zigzag is another straight-lined form largely used as ornament it was used by the Egyptians and Early Greeks as the symbol of water (Figs.
then their vertical
.ELEMENTARY FORMS. FRETS
and form the basis of many woven stuffs. octagons.
tiles. hexagons. squares.
touching each other at their opposite extremities. the outline of the cloud.. and in the vesica piscis. or the rounded
limb of the
have closed curves tracing out the flowing curve.
16. 29). oval.
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
After the straight in ornament. &c. are open such figures as the meander (Fig.
The parabola. the
eye takes a delight
FIG. hyperbola. or fish-shape. such figures as the circle. the wave.
pre-eminently the type of and the "line of beauty/' Whether seen in grace. the latter
being composed of two arcs of a circle of the same radius.
fret. figure of eight.
FIGS. it is called a catenary. and is practically identical with the lines of festoons and the loopings
of drapery. 24). 31
circles intersecting each other.
formed of links and hangs like a chain from two points. 27).
. the scroll (Fig. 25). CURVED LINES
spiral (Fig. we have at Fig. are also open curves.
In the illustrations. 17 to 20. and the festoon (Fig.
Straight-lined ornaments. 30 circles touching each other this is the framework of some
Next we come
alternating with the guilloche (Figs. 25. 24.
. on which the pattern was incised.
and Japanese a border ornament of the same
FIGS. small oblong pieces of stone or metal.
from Assyrian tesserae. 34. and a development of the latter is that of Fig.
effective disc border. 33.32
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
alike to Saracenic. Fig. Egyptian.
diapers. like that
made by savage
from cut shells.
guilloche was an important pattern in Assyrian
work. 37. 21 to 23.
Greek moulding decoration.
Scroll. 32 pattern with a centre.
Straight-lined ornaments. 38. taken
in their flat
painted ornament. is shown at Fig. 39.
FIG. C. E.
Scale-work (imbricated).ORNAMENT FROM THE CIRCLE
E. B. 27. 28. 29. D.
Festoon (catenary). A.
36 Ornaments mostly derived from the
circle. 26. A.
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
being the Gothic ball-flower.
given at Fig.
of the frets are
pass from the circle to the spiral. 43
from an Egyptian
spirals. Imbricated or scale ornament was much used for roofs. Fig. and 42 is the
Greek wave. to ornament small
mouldings. 1 from which a great part of ornamental forms are derived. B.
C. 30 to 36. 35
and 36 are further examples of ornament obtained from the circle and its segments the former
. 41 is an Egyptian wave scroll.
the double spiral of the
these contain the spiral as their chief
44 shows two intersecting me-
characteristic. 45 is the scroll or antispiral
recta. 37 to 40.
Ornaments mostly derived from the
ceiling. 47 is a scroll intersected by a meander. 46 is an eccentric meander.
54 is shown the irregular meanders and spiral curves forming the stand for the tripod on the roof of the choragic
of Lysikrates. 53 is one of the scrolls. called by the French
rais de cceur . 71
variety. 50 shows the anatomy or centre lines of the purely aesthetic Greek pattern developed at Fig. 41 to 48.
spiral curves. and in Fig.
Figs. 49. Fig.
Fig.THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
FIGS. 70 is the ornament on the Greek cyma reversa or ogee. 51 and 52 are additional examples.
49 to 52. ^^
52 Greek borders from
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
e. as well as between the enrichment and the this last eleground. The same may be said of the setting out of the more complex schemes of ornament.
GROWTH. to make ornament pleasing
. a whole class of ornament depends on geometrical arrangement. GEOMETRICAL ARRANGEMENT.g. or with a recurring element of irregularity and as every nt and part of it are set out on a geometrical basis. but we must look to works of art
for their proper application. we cannot have good floral ornament without such an arrangement.
the principal ones
may be deduced are numberless.CHAPTER
laws of composition in ornament are deduced nature. TANGENTIAL JUNCTION. we cannot have
ornament without some geometrical arrangement^ even spots in a line must be set out at regular distances. There must be harmonic proportion between the parts of the ornament. SUPERPOSITION. FITNESS. RADIATION.
. Some these are preliminary laws. REPOSE.
SERIES. and besides this framework. SYMMETRY. but may be given as follows PROPORTION. REPETITION. STABILITY.
ornament. and directly we get as far as the scroll. and is the repetition of any form on its axis even the rudest blot so doubled makes
. and Saracenic ornament it
Indian. there is such variety and
admits of a variety of treatment Chinese. and Superposition may be looked on as the last addition to ornament yet
made by man
As we advance we want
An unsymmetrical ornament generally
requires Balance . at stated intervals of a succession of different objects. we must have tangential junction^ for broken-backed
Next comes Repose : curves are hardly ornament.
comes next.LAWS OF ORNAMENT
ment of proportion and is found in
tion. as if it would fall down.
contrast. Unity is necessary in any complex Series adds a new element by the repetition system.
or of similar ones of increasing or decreasing size.
to be satisfactory must have Stability.
painfully monowhile in good Roman and Renaissance work.
generally called even distribugood work at the same time
. Repetition may be looked on as the first law
. and not look After these preliminaries. tonous. as the mere alternation of and horizontal lines form a contrasted ornaupright ment Symmetry perhaps comes next. Growth gives us one of the most vigorous and de-
elements in nature. that
never becomes tiresome.
be said to include
before-mentioned and more. decoration that seems to crawl is not pleasing any
elementary ornament. though the law is observed.
There are certain distances between
more pleasing than others.
meant. The methods of pro-
portioning cornices given in Vitruvius are useful (the application of proportion to surfaces will be found
Proportion. but in addition to the spaces.
in creeping or
though Greek mouldings are unsuitable for in this climate. one space should preponderate. to indicate superior supporting power. should
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
some of the
laws.). and not attached to a also central stem. put vertically. composed of lines or mouldings. C and D. there The are the projections and contours to be studied.
be a proportionate part of the narrowest width of the space or panel. In the rare case in which such an arrangement is wanted in ornament. or to the framework of the panel to bulky forms put on slight ones. study of Greek profiles (Figs. and as a rule. and bear the strain of winds by their strength and the spread and tenacity of their roots.
. p. such as difference of texture between the supports and the mass above. that from their size seem unable to support the weight.
further explanation. or series of mouldings.
Stability. applies also to the architectural features of a
indispensable in designing borders. 15) is most
lines that are
valuable. The width of such border. In mouldings the same thing is true. we must resort to some device. and in panels. We know from experience that trunks of trees support the enormous mass of branches and foliage above them by their solidity.
the former are children may be repeated imaginary creatures. One human figure is in an ornamental panel. but if it be carried too far it produces monotony. and in colour. this may be seen in a long
succession of similar windows in factories. was probably the cause of the ancients so often making
half-floral. net-work. there are often spots of contrasting colour on flowers to
afford a larger
and more important post or a group them this infusion of Variety would correct the monotonous appearance. as a rule. and
little more endless rows of iron railings to parks. The difficulty of prevent-
even cupids from absorbing all interest. patterns in checkers.LAWS OF ORNAMENT
Repetition is the first method by which things were turned into ornament.
subtle contrasts are found in Nature's works. but symbolic and distinguishing forms must. which should be an open screen they are seen playing through. or diapers
be repeated up to a certain point without being tiresome. but even these should be so arranged as to compose with
the foliage. and greatly add to the
pleasure of the beholders.
The ornaments on mould-
Contrast in form or colour imparts vigour to the composition the commonest illustration of contrast in form is the circle and the straight line. would put in proper places a larger or more thought and in the case of railings would ornate window
. but' more
. besides the contrasts of the leaves and flowers. very
curves being contrasted with sharp ones.
though cupids or very
. be used sparingly. because the mostly enough
figure absorbs the attention. and the latter sportive ones.
Nothing in nature.
It is found in the human hand.
other plant growth. in the wing feathers of birds. though this is mostly effected " by the pistils and stamens. 129) give the amplest illustrations
labels. animals. and
figures. has the smooth curved eggs contrasted with the thin lines of the shells. in the
umbels of flowers. 49. as well as important one of the laws most commonly found in nature. lines may be straight or curved. 67. in the scallop and simi-
lar bivalve shells.) ornament (see Fig.
the spreading out of lines from a point. 52.44
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
heighten their brilliancy. The Greek honeysuckle is the most beautiful instance of its adaptation as ornament. 124. though there is a suggestion of symmetry about
the bulk of
adds greatly to the interest and beauty of the ornament. 50. 127. succession of festoons or of drapery hanging from two points are examples of one species
of curved radiation. however.
varieties of foliage contrasting with vases. and 115.)
Symmetry has been defined before
. and the curved eggs with the straight edge of the tongue.
and the axis of the radiating
it is one of the most doubling of a form on its axis means of producing ornament.
. Renaissance and Roman (Fig."
one of the most effective ornaments invented. 51. 121.) If the centre of
the radiating lines
kept below the springing
. 130. (See Figs.
armour. The egg and tongue. is absolutely symmetrical. 126.
like a fan. horizontal.
and Frontispiece. 123. or oblique.
see that every leaf varies
from every other by subtle differences. however.
In ornament. horizontal lines are introduced partly pilaster panels.
following this rule is seen in the Ionic capitals of the Temple of Apollo at Bassse. where the two volutes are joined by a curve instead of
The beauty imparted by
by the usual
Repose. and in patterns in woven The word repose is sometimes and printed stuffs. and being produced does not cut it. and partly to give repose by checking the appearance of motion in the curved plant forms. 127." and is obtained by drawing a line perpendicular to any radius from the point at which
touches the circumference.
In the best used to denote an absence of spottiness.
the tangential point.
(Fig. in some modern paper-hangings.
of a look of motion in orna-
ment this appearance of motion may be seen in some flamboyant tracery and Saracenic patterns. and it is for this reason that
Euclid's definition of a tanstraight line
gent a circle. when
said to touch
circle. 179 in Appendix).LAWS OF ORNAMENT
Tangential Junction. 25).
the point of junction is never
but by a
flatter curve. tangen-
junction means that where two curves of opposite curvature meet they are to meet at the tangential points of each (Fig. and in the case of a curve being
continued by a straight
Variety is a difference of form or arrangement in the ornament from that which immediately precedes
it. be continued by a straight
straight line (see Fig.
. though the foliage is roughly alike.
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
Nature's works never pall upon us.
Modern English carved
Balance. one side is more convex than the other.
of being inferior to another. such as masses or flowers. shrubs. Renaissance bas-relief of a full face the greatest projection is about the sixteenth of an inch. equally employed. subordination is obtained by the principal mass being larger than the rest. though the highest relief of this art. is not great. and by its details
being larger and more pronounced in painting.
. there is an infinity of gradation. General similarity is the most proper for the highest and most dignified ornament.
. and all the rest should lead up to it but certain distinct parts.
were on a symmetrical basis. that takes off the insipidity of repetition. and plants (Fig.
most important. balance employed in trees.
in modelling. by the above and by the principal part being more vivid in
Romans and Cinque Cento
In a lowest relief gradually sinking into the ground.
. one part should be chosen as the
Subordination. example. In other cases absolute
with slight variety
Variety is the salt of ornament variety is permissible.
re-echo in a fainter
the main motive.
too frequently deficient in this quality.
and the balance
got by the curve in the
rib. and yet the
perfectly modelled. a regular descending series.
The making unsymmetrical masses
In the creations of nature we see equal weight.
were great masters In some panels.
in leaves. In simple oval leaves.
drawing. In any complex system of ornament.
once the rarest
delightful of the hints taken from nature by great In climbing plants. where the same text is repeated sometimes
reel. The simplest form is in the case of meanders of different curvature when one is put over the other. examples of which are without number in Saracenic work.LAWS OF ORNAMENT
Unity. but it is also found in Renaissance ornament.
with ornament between the texts. or for the flowers to get the sun. as in the Persian windows of
but the comthe Suleimanyeh at Constantinople monest case is that of inscriptions over floral orna. Long series may be seen in Saracenic (Fig. of many.
seen in the turn of a leaf or the clasp of a The capitals and the tripod
stand of the choragic
of Lysikrates are
Superposition. like nearly all other inven-
. and that twist to reach an object.
polygonal. the upper one being more vigorous in form
where larger ornaments
striking colour are put over a smaller and less obtrusive pattern.
54. the edges of the stalk are seen to form a spiral. This.
the repetition of a limited succession of in the egg and tongue. 67.
branches of plants when the leaves regularly diminish in size. of two in
. whose stalks are ornamentalists. Sometimes this vigour of
round a twig.) ornament. is the completeness of any system of ornament not marred by incongruous elements or forms.
most frequently seen
the bead and
and of the appropriateness
of the ornament to the purpose for which the article is intended and thirdly. in one of his delightful letters to
I will leave you.
diapers frequently have many planes superposed. and as each pattern is differently coloured and gilt. &c. any change of position in the beholder
brings out a new pattern. and have therefore roots.
value of plain spaces in design is enormous.
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
ornament. one small white spot empty below. Charles Lamb. says in finishing mercy.
overgrowing trees or bushes. nor render the
ornament so that
proper wielding of the sword difficult or impossible and the same canon applies to the handles of flagons. and flowers.)
Fitness^ in its
101. but no leaves. it supposes a well-ordered
. (Fig. and parasitical plants overgrowing others. fatigued as they must be with the
. This may be seen Alhambra Court at the Crystal Palace. is arranging the not interfere with the proper may use of the thing ornamented.
design. to repose your eyes upon. The want of what is called "alternation " in design
is analogous to a surface that is so elaborately decorated with a uniform repeating pattern that it is
wearisome to look
taken from nature. or drinking vessels. stems. The enrichment of a sword-hilt must not hurt the hand.
whose completeness would be marred by anything being added or removed. in Coleridge.
a secondary sense
a due consideration of the qualities of the material to be ornamented. from which they get their sustenance.
do too much than to know exactly Excess of ornament defeats its own stop. every surface is covered without a spot to rest the eye on. and it must be
It is easier to
guarded against. there is no foil to set it off.
the value of plainness
enhance the ornament used. are the oases in the desert. in late Roman. confused. and may be compared to a refreshing silence after a continuous chatter or deafening noise.
you see a very small quantity of exquisite ornament surrounded by plainness."
be obvious and
brought home to you. by the relative weight of their ornament. so that the whole becomes dull. have to some extent obviated this
objection. and monotonous. end.LAWS OF ORNAMENT
wilderness of words they have by this time painfully To the designer this analogy travelled through.
Plain spaces as alternations in design.
. which makes it doubly
precious. The Saracens. the best Greek architecture In the Greek should be compared with late Roman.
greatest efforts were made to have these mouldings as exquisite as possible. so as
Figs. segments of circles being rarely used.
was not so
to get variety of shade and shadow. used segments of circles for their mouldings instead of the Greek curves. (See Figs. 55 66. and mouldings of the same species were rarely or never alike. who had much coarser
than the Greeks.) They also had an
carried the art of
speaking of the decoration of mouldings. 6 1
Romans. and were slaves to easy rules. and they are still supreme they mainly used straight-lined sections for strength.CHAPTER
BEFORE words a few
themselves. must be said on the mouldings
The Greeks were
moulding or profiling to any perfection. The air of Greece is pellucid and the sunshine brilliant. but added a few
. who lived in misty climates sunshine.
less clear. although their mouldings answer the
. were as logical in their methods. so for
curved sections those that approximated to
conic sections were preferred as having more subtle shade.
curved sections to prevent monotony. so. but were not possessed of the artistic sensibilities of
58. or cyma reversa.
56. 55 to 60.
Greek mouldings with
fillets. 61 to 66.
. or cyma reversa.Scotia.
and by putting or leaving arrises on such parts as were to tell
Classic and Renaissance mouldings. they lack refinement. however.
In the best periods of ancient art it was the invariable custom to adopt a form nearly like the profile or
section of the moulding.GREEK MOULDINGS
and to double it for the basis and nothing could produce a more decoration. bright are alone treated of here.
by deep undercutting.
a curved "astragal" or bead
used to enrich
it. ornamented with eggs. 67 to 78 will
help to illustrate this for instance. 67 we have the Greek ovolo." which resemble the section of the moulding doubled at 70 and 73 the Greek ogee is shown with the water leaf ornament
. The diagrams from Figs.-^Roman variety of the ornament on the ogee.
. at Fig. called
FIG. or hollow
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
pleasing and artistic result.
by the Greeks "turnip stones.
The Greek ogee with water
leaf ornament. for then the moulding never lost its character.
which we have no distinctive " " name it Rais de Cceur called by the French and resembles the section of the moulding doubled at 71 is a Roman variation of this ornament at 68. however elaborately it might be enriched.
at 69. 70.
it must be.
their floors. and what is unpleasant to use is
. remembered that in floor decoration the sense of flatness should
be preserved raised and especially angular surfaces are to be avoided. and beads. (See also Figs. and 76 are examples of
fascias.) Figs. 72
Decorated mouldings from the temple of Minerva Polias at Athens.
Beginning with the floor. 74."
FIG. 75. walls. 72 and 73 for examples of Greek bead and reel ornament.
next briefly speak of the ornamental
floors. ogee ovolo. 78 is the bead and reel ornament." and when raised in relief reeded.
are sunk with semi-circular or elliptical channels they " " are called fluted.
. 74 to 76.
Temple of Jupiter
nothing should be introduced to disturb the flatness. or a All realistic renderings of animals ridge and furrow. but evenly distributed.
Astragal or bead moulding.
or plants should be carefully avoided.
by shading the forms or by imitating mouldings. tiles. 78.
may be varied. rugs. mosaic. or parquetry.
marble or metal.
FIGS. and mostly sober. floor-cloth.THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
decoration be obtained
for flat bands. 76
B. though the Romans sometimes used lapis
Church of San
being marble inlaid
passages cannot be used
. and is still of a high
order in the scale of floor decorations. 79. and the Byzantines used gold or silver chased and enriched with niello.
museums. Mosaic work applied to floors was an early form of decoration. or
encrusted them with gems. the highest
lazuli for their floors.
Opus Alexandrinum from a pavement Marco (Rome). like those in the Baptistery at Florence and The use of marble or tiles the Cathedral at Siena.
limited to the floors of
border always improves a carpet. or covered with a pattern. greens. if properly designed to harmonize
with the centre.
lines like the
is If other the most dignified treatment. on a white marble ground.
direction. or square basis. as a rule. though marble occasionally takes the place of porphyry in
the smaller geometrical patterns.60
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
with hangings of
decoration of these coverings
flatly. shells or looking-glass. landscapes. (See Fig. Walls may be decorated with metals or marbles with wood panelling. greys. birds. and should be treated flatly. colours are used. black with pale red or cream colour.
be treated with borders
framing of a picture. with plain colour.) Floor-cloths and linoleums are of modern introduction. with painted or stencilled
carved or incised
with furs or feather work
the pattern should. embedded. with the field (or central space) either plain. 79. Opus Alexandrinum is one of the most
magnificent floor decorations yet used
circular slabs of
. moulded. either plain. and black porphyry.
of subdued colours treated
In carpets. and yellows are to be preferred. human figures.
porphyry are surrounded with bands composed of geometrical figures in purple. and architecture are out of place on carpets. lozenge.
. green. they should have a simple outline. or low-toned reds. is sunk.
from geometric points at least the more important spots should be on a circular. inlaid. powdered with spots of Black and decoration.
so that the eye should not be carried in one particular If animals are used. or to enhance its value.
with plaster flatly embossed or or in which stones.
silk. or calico. stamped leather or
. either plain. satin. or
embroidered by tapestry. matting. enriched.
Oo o OO O C
84. should neither arrest the eye nor carry it in any
. The height of a real
dado generally depends on the height of the chair-backs. but will lead the eye from one corner of the room to the other. represent All these decorative arrange.
particular form. to be satisfactory as a background.
for the lines of a wall-paper.
their elements. A pattern.
predominate will have the effect of lengthening or widening the surface of the wall whilst the diagram 83.
81. 84 a tolerably good paperhanging is produced that will form a background for furniture and pictures. 80. arrests the eye. nor be forcibly carried in
ments are bad as wall-coverings but by combining Fig. 81 and 82 tend to exaggerate the height or breadth of the room for patterns in which vertical or horizontal
particular direction. and partly by the use to
83. decorated wall spaces.62
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
they should have a uniform pattern and be free from for the eye should not be arrested by any spots
. but it may be influenced by the height of the ceiling. Fig.
we may suppose
80. being composed of oblique lines. will not only give a look of weakness to the wall.
85 to 87.
high wainscoting prevents If the wainscot
which the room
Fillings of ceilings
showing various schemes of all-over
be higher than the centre of the wall. the upper part of the wall may have a stronger decoration with a
more flowing pattern than would be admissible on a
small-sized pictures from being seen.
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
Wall spaces need not be panelled in small rooms. 89.
adorned with figures of men or animals. and fireplaces mostly break up the If the rooms.
Ceiling from Serlio's architecture. as the windowopenings. a still freer and more pictorial treatment
be allowed on
it. or life-bearing.
high. doors. because
dado and a frieze are improvements.
called the frieze
Zoophoros. are space sufficiently. the room. though small.CEILING DIVISIONS
If there be a frieze in wall with lower wainscoting. On there is more room for variety and elaboraF
mouldings are well contrasted.
compartments. 89. either by painting or by relief work. which should be alike. Figs. good examples may be studied of
the best period of Italian Renaissance (Fig. An effective treatment consists in lightly covering the field with a pattern steadied by labels.
safe guide for the
obtaining the requisite proportions is to be found in the Roman ceilings.66
tion. shields. although those of
which drawings are preserved were mostly vaulted. 85). Care must be taken in designing the subdivisions of ceilings that the panels. however. For flat ceilings. 87). or to cover it over with
a scroll-work pattern (Fig. so that no two series of panels shall be the same width this. 88 and 89 show such arrangements. Ceilings of may be harmonically divided
work or modelled ornament on
should be so regulated that the light from windows
. does not apply to the widths of the stiles and rails. or medallions (Fig. In dividing a ceiling into panels. and regard
corridors or long rooms across at discretion. though there are excellent Renaissance ceilings divided into equal panels.
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
There are many ways of decorating ceilings. When the ceiling is unequally divided. the centre panel or compartment should generally be larger than any of the others
and 92 at B). the spaces should be
in the different
admissible. 86). take the cornice as the frame.
a ceiling to be decorated
by beams. interspaces. 88).
harmonic proportion. the panelling.
the ceiling as the space to decorate the simplest way is to powder it (Fig. and in both cases the mouldings of the panels are usually
or from artificial illumination should cause
preponderance of light in the larger masses.
a lower relief in the carving and more delicacy in the mouldings is admissible.
ment on its ground. they must be so arranged as to be seen from the heads at the most important point in the room seen from the feet the figures appear to be upside down.
shadow. it would be as well to state. confusion and obscurity are apt to be produced. and also that where human figures are used on ceilings. than in a misty one like
. only enough to define the outline the forms should be carefully rounded off in the more important masses to lessen the abruptness of cast shadow. If this be not attended to.
where strong sunlight rarely occurs
. that no carved decoration should be fastened on to a ceiling or panel. Before leaving the subject of relief ornament. is commonly adopted.
which allows of a coarser material being used.
. connected and softened by lower tones.
the play of light and shade should be quite secondary. be remarked. that for outdoor work in a sunny climate. nice balancing of light and shade is of the
It may here greatest importance in relief ornament.
this reason a bolder
relief is necessary. and not compete in strength with the deeper shadows cast by the ornathe carved surface
itself. but should be worked out of the material itself.
length should be given to every oblong used in decoration.
The Greeks were
the great masters of this
art. In the case of the square there should be
forms about which there
no doubt about its being a square. or an ellipse that approaches a circle. the ornament should be symmetrical on both the axes.
most subtle proportions being chosen by them. after
or falls short of that figure. and with those rough rules. so it is necessary that the ornamentation chosen be calculated to emphasize the shape and not give it the appearance of an oblong. e. a marked
not space here to enter into refinements. the proportion of if to I is fairly when the space required approaches a agreeable
. e. Roughly speaking. and it is often useful to accentuate
the corners as well
. an oblong that approaches the square. preponderance in the height
somewhat exceeds a rule.
an uncertainty always look feeble and unsatisfactory.
double square. i.CHAPTER V
setting out spaces for decoration the chief aim be to get them in harmonic proportion.
obtain harmonious proportions.
the square be surrounded by
.g. an educated eye can mostly.
however. a few figures in front view. looking-glasses. and its place must be then supplied by an ellipse.
arranged. which has this merit.
its proportions are infinite. particularly
a perfectly symmetrical
be to express some marked or for the sake of the composition there emotion. that form the centres of ornamental comthe front view of animals in bas-relief is positions
less admissible. sculptors rarely represent
attitude. as in the case of a central feature in a very
useful closed curve. the straight line the circle being only extreme cases of the ellipse and but when the choice is unfettered the long (major)
. ETC. so
get variety form as the
commonly put below the centre to Even in so graceful a in the panels.
much resembles one
placed with the long
axis vertical. it should be tied to the vertical and horizontal framework to prevent an
. A common case of the monotonous effect
of similar oblong panels is to be seen in a fourpanelled door with the middle rail in the centre.
much more endurable than a repetition of similar oblongs.
not always available.
.PROPORTION. symmetrically are.
axis should so far exceed the short (minor) as to afford a contrast an ellipse that differs but slightly
. The repetition of squares
bas-relief. the square will be taken for an oblong. &c. which
long ceiling or in oblong panels. human figure.
sometimes advisable to strengthen its If this be done it is necessary to corners by have them at the four corners if they be applied to the two upper or the two under corners.
appearance of instability.
Vase by Stevens showing unequal
divisions of the height.
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
strengthening horizontal bands. and when this cannot be done it should be supported by foliage.
lines themselves have a strengthening effect.
. several things have to be considered. the predominant space for the most important decoration must be placed where the curve is nearly uniform.
Vase showing unequal
divisions of the height. 90 and 91).VASE DECORATION
horizontally dividing objects circular in plan and curved in section. the vase
however. but the question is where they are best applied if the curves
of the object vary considerably.
also be given to the placing of the vase . the points at which the variations begin are the proper places. 91. and strengthening horizontal bands. such as vases.
if. or else the ornament will be The Greek painted vases. as in all others. with lines or
The bands. have the main ornament confined to the shoulder.
in their ceptions. and in this case. with a few exdistorted. are the best examples of excellence Due consideration must divisions (Figs.
to be decorated. variety and the predominance of
one division are to be adopted
. some of the Greek vases. intended to stand on the ground.
symmetrical on their horizontal axes. care must taken that they neither have a weak outline
of curves. candlesticks.
Panelling of ceilings showing at
a bad. it is a rule that they should not be divided in the general middle.72
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
division of objects in the round. in the
case of certain vases. but that the upper or under part should be
distinctly predominant. the upper and under forms should then be identical. an exception to this objects are wanted to be
different. In the case of ornamental objects whose outline
a matter of taste. and balusters.
and that the two parts should
FIG. nor one that
. like A. and at
a better arrangement. such as finger-plates. e.g.
Finger-plates for a door. like B the design both these defects (Fig.
93. and a well-
proportioned one at B.
.PROPER AND IMPROPER DIVISIONS
an ill-proportioned division at A. of different outlines.
Compositions wholly formed of parallel straight
of the savage (Fig.
be employed to correct
In the shield planes of varied outline. network
(Figs. the two horizontal
bands. and Damascus.
circular paterae are used on the fascia for this reason
modern ornamentalists have introduced (Fig. lack firmness
of the ends
excessive and monotonous.
frieze. 96) curved figures to correct the dryness. or
it should be sunk what beauty can be got by flat colours may be seen in the tiles from Rhodes. that Greeks corrected
sometimes called dryness. and horizontal lines though the circular cut shell-work
straight lines. the painted or inlaid ornament upon it should not be shaded nor have cast shadows.74
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
such as entablatures. and not enclosed
and rigidity. just below the junction of the semicircles with the straight lines. that borders upon the
lines. On large surfaces the best forms of applying ornaments is within
99). made of black and yellow cane ornamented with cut shells. Cairo. on the fascia of the archivolt (Fig. strengthen the composition there is a fair amount of contrast between the oblique lines
. which be imparted by inserting frets or flutes radiating may from the centre. Archivolts to circular openings without imposts.
a surface requires ornament and yet to be kept flat.
of the ornaments.
this defect in their entablatures
introducing figures in the
mostly ornamented their friezes with festoons and In the door architrave at the Erechtheum foliage. and some door and window have a severity. slanting. and the circular.
Contrasting decoration on rectangular and circular borders. Michael Angelo enriched a string there with copies
not in diapers. the ornament should be uniform in general
leaving the varieties to be discovered by closer One of the best examples of this.
effect. 95. where striking variety may be introduced at set intervals.
CONTRAST WITH BOUNDARIES
and except in the case of very large surfaces. is in the Medici Chapel at Florence.
Erechtheum showing the
paterae on the fascia.
To adopt forms directly from nature for the shape of any article of use is rarely successful. &c. of shells. but on going near chapel
The Orientals. Gothic. though the best shapes have mostly been suggested by natural
FIG. which partly removes
them from pure
realism. but they mostly want stands or feet. except in
the case of the
as in vessels
made in imitation of a piece of bamboo.
is seen to be different. have been very fond of this direct imitation. especially those of the extreme East. of gourds with both single and double bulbs.
Moresque.THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
in looking at the sides of the of antique masks the masks seem all alike.
and Renaissance work. checkers. the horns and hoofs of animals including
the horn of the rhinoceros. flowers.. and examples of
them. each one
diapers. Innumerable ornament within network. of eggs. 96.
and the proper application of ornament
that such objects might be directly imitated from nature. Sprays of fuchsia with a large flower on
each were used for curtain hooks
the ancient traditions had died out
branches of plants
of cane and ornamented with cut shells and zigzags. the form of which too
to articles of use
wickerwork. an apparent absurdity
Such vagaries are happily disappearing. gold brooches in imitation of twisted bread. and other adaptations were made that were
equally incongruous. and does not interfere with
use. since/the creation of museums and schools of ornamental art. Sometimes nature was not vast enough for imitation earthenware bowls and wine-coolers were made in imitation of
.THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
were used for gas brackets with the flame coming from the flower and vases were made in imitation
and only be ornapurpose. and wicker-covered bottles
such designs. but they are by no means extinct.
true that the
with an outer
covering of woven cane.
article. too. woven baskets
. carry their
spite of these cases. whether for use or^ornament.
Carved checkers. but only
. or supposed purpose mented when the ornament does not appear incongruous. should be constructed as elegantly as possible for its
. 98 and 99.
the arum. not to speak of the poverty of invention they betray.
and when the walls were wholly painted.
parts of walls in
magnificent buildings. The part of the wall above this may be treated with greater
freedom and elaboration.The Saracens also employed marble. The Romans furniture.
this part. so it may be remarked that the lower part of a wall should be
more severity and sobriety than the the lower part is partly hidden by upper part and is most liable to injury. something has been said
about the application of ornament. wood
they often imitated the more costly materials.
tapestry. Geometrical figures or diapers are most appropriate for
when it is painted or papered. .WALL DECORATION
form or relieves
mainly confined to outlines Although this chapter and divisions of surfaces. and Byzantines mostly used marble for the lower
marble. but when
was not easy
part of the wall on a
it. though in magnificence marble was either imitated by painting.
with the eye should have greater finish bestowed unless there be a frieze with figures or a higher
to a larger scale. or else simple floral decoration was used. tiles
6. and these may roughly be divided into six
classes or great divisions.
or one-sided. as panels of piers.
&c. powdering. checkering.
panels of curved and straight
Unsymmetrical spaces founded by straight or lines. All-over patterns
arrangements. &c. painted.
. 5. Symmetrical arrangements composed of straight
4. as floors. either rectangular or of closed curved figures. pilasters. by diapering. or spot:
drels. or by both. and are drawn. has no carved.
ceilings. modelled. The uniform siirfaces of large undivided areas are mostly decorated in the following ways by all-over patterns. if symmetrical. as follows
1. or The typical pattern. as
3. as panels.CHAPTER
previously considered the principal eleof ornament. it is now advisable to
classify ornament in accordance with the spaces it has to fill.
Italian. 100. Saracenic influence.
velvet. i6th century.
through Latin diasprum. 101. it is now applied to all patterns enclosed in a repeating geometrical form.
The Chinese formerly
plied paper-hangings that
would cover a whole room
some repeating geometrical
figure not composed of
In Saracenic and Moresque work real straight lines. 107. 109. In vulgar parlance.) These were mostly of silk covered with small
patterns in colour. Assisi and
. the width of the paper (Fig. This is one of the cheap substitutes for the real thing which
painted in imitation of marble panels. diapers are mostly found. rarely seen. 143).
art. that suggested the appearance of the flowering of jasper. Francis. unless the artist does it own delight. called a repeat by stencilling or pouncing the repeat.
however. a geometrical framework
being laid over some interlaced
in painted decoration were mostly diapered. the diapers are on painted hangings at the Arena Chapel at Padua the
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
two pieces of the ornament alike in the one half.
at the Sainte Chapelle at Paris. Italian diaspro.
is. and no. if in plaster. Checkers and network enclosing carved patterns
floral patterns (Fig. and if balanced or onesided has no two pieces alike so that the whole is full of interest from its variety. (See Figs. diaper comes from jasper. if
. or French
paper-hangings by the repetition
of a piece.
and was originally applied to woven
from the East. as. few amateurs care to pay for it.
without a repeat. as may be seen in one of the churches of St.
painted and by cast repeats.
. -a favourite method of ornamenting in the Middle Ages.
although rectilinear network is more common (Fig. 101. the variations being
enough to prevent disgust on a near view. but powdering is most favoured by them Sometimes it is put over a pattern (Figs. CHECKERS. 99).si
Japanese network. or diapers is not too large the patterns should so far resemble one another as to give a uniform appearance.
monotony. The second division is ornament arranged in horizontal bands. 103 105). and for the other decoration. with checkers.
FIG. patterns may sometimes alternate. at certain intervals. The Greeks were pre-eminent in the use of horizontal bands in their sculptured and
(Fig. 104). 102).
Powdering was. Care must be taken to make the network and pattern of the proper scale for the building or room. to relieve the
FIG. too. network. but in
very large surfaces another distinct pattern should be introduced. 102.
Moresque diaper. 98.
on the walls of Gothic cathedrals and
When the space covered (Figs. Diapers are found in Chinese and Japanese decoration.
Superimposed Japanese powdering.
FIG. Italian brocade. 105. 6th century.
origin). 107. i6th century.FIG.
in velvet brocade.
52. 51. shawls.
. 49. 113. and if you take the band ornaments out of Greek work there is very little ornament left. Figs. 45.
designed on this system. 109. 42. and patterns the beautiful ornament on their vases. 37.
Thefrzeze is a characterGreek architecture. on their dresses.
Construction lines of Fig. were mainly
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
The embroidered or woven decorations. 108. and curtains.
Italian. i6th century. 109.
the decoration of the soffits of beams and of ribs and groins in Gothic. the sacred shawls of Minerva at the Parthenon (pepla) are only known by description. 116. and is probably of Assyrian origin.
patterns. birds. The shawl (peplum) of Demeter on a vase at the
114. and usually form divisions between wall-spaces in the shape of
panels in piers and pilasters. they
mostly architectural in character.
Demetrius). the bottom of each side
. and so may the soffits of arches in the Classic and Renaissance
circular flower that usually
formed the spot
Greek ornament was composed of a greater number .
has chariot races.
Figs.) affords good examples of horizontal band treatment.of petals than the Roman. winged cupids. though some purists
When gives a look of weakness to the arch. and if narrow be treated like pilaster panels. and dolphins in the successive bands animals. of arches are wide in proportion to their
height they may be panelled.
Spotting at regular intervals was the favourite way of decorating the larger surface of dresses. 118 and 119.) The third division : perpendicular bands are not
in decoration as
the former class. Triglyphs in friezes may even be classed in this division. (See Figs. Saracen work also (See Fig.88
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
some of their favourite band and 117 show some of the patterns on dresses taken from the Greek vases. One had the battle of the gods and giants woven or embroidered on it. and another was ornamented with the portraits of Antigonus and Demetrius Poliorcetes (Plutarch's
Italian or Spanish. no.
in silk brocade.89
FIG. but now only employed for furniture. i6th century formerly for dress purposes.
Italian. i6th century.
Greek border from a
Greek ivy meander^border.
Greek border with
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
Greek borders. 116 and 117.
being at the springing the tops may nearly touch at the crown.
supporting feature. 118 and 119. The artists of those times paid
The best examples of this kind of decoration are Roman. The ornament on a must be symmetrically built with the strongpilaster est elements at the base and the lightest at the top. or be separated by a circular panel. and French Cinque-Cento work. The latter may be seen in the well-known pilasters of Louis XII. The decoration of pilaster panels in relief should
be comparatively low. there should be nothing vague.PILASTER DECORATION
. the danger to be
apprehended being a
of architectural severity
Persian borders. and although some of the minor details may almost sink into the ground.
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
so that the ornament may not have the air of
being cut out with a fret-saw.
main piece of ornament that
has the greatest projection
be echoed up the pilaster with a sort of ebb and flow. that if animal forms are introduced they should be repeated. and
and 123 show some examples of When the main ornamental effect
pilaster decoration. 122.PILASTER DECORATION
Greeks did to horizontal band-work.
T/te fourth division.
scale of importance as
the greatest subsidiary projection should be less than the
Modern ornamenthave insisted.
method does not seem
been adhered to by the
or Renaissance artists. with the face slightly carved
we sometimes meet with
cupids or children at the very base of the panel.
w/. the next problem to is to get the greatest
possible variation in the planes of the carving.
well to accentuate certain portions if care be taken to avoid
Italian pilaster decoration. 123. 12^.96
enamel colours and gold
. 124. date 1572.97
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
by moulding. 148 and 120). paterse or bosses and in cases where
. or the centres alone may be varied. either purely floral (Figs. or they may have central medallions circular or oval. or after the manner of pilaster panels. if the
. or the ornament may spring from vases at the bottom (Fig. and floors cannot have real panels. so upright rectangular panels
first. each one may be varied.
Venetian panel illustrating "balance" without symmetry. 126. 127).
narrow and un-
moulded they may be
with symmetrical ornament
Their simplest ornamentation is mouldings have stopped ends.
on either side of an upright stem. they
as linen panels..
these narrow panels are in a long succession.PANELS AND BORDERS
ings have been treated in Chapter IV.
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
. spotted. leaving the rest of plain.
corners. and was common to enrich the
In ornamental panels the mouldings of the frame
. or filled with
filled by diapers. 127. powdered.
and weight of the centres be preserved circular and oval panels in moulded frames should be avoided in woodwork on account of the chances of the mouldIn Saracenic and Moresque work the ings splitting. to form a centre.
panels are mostly
European work and sometimes
the panel interlaced work.
Renaissance panel ornament.PANEL ORNAMENT
crater in silver
from the Hildesheim treasures.
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
and wild rose. Compound shapes such as spandrels. convolvulus.
floral ornament composed of the acanthus.
FIG. &c. it is well to slightly enrich member to connect the frame with the panel
from the plain
carved when enriched
panels are used. compound panels.PANEL ORNAMENT
must never be wholly ornamented (see sometimes they may be wholly plain. and the panels are carved. inlay or incised ornament is the best form of
enrichment for the stiles and rails. 128). and
. The fifth division. there be
several mouldings. but
great richness is required. segmental pediments. oak leal.
" some arms and pieces of armour and some utensils (Fig. the last
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
lamp bottoms. 131). but it requires great
the sides are well
under the name of
between two arches a slight deviation
from symmetry may be allowed balanced.
132. The Gothic spandrel (Fig. 131) from Stone Church. for they
properly emphasized. is a good example of balance. the spandrels may and unsymmetrical treatment. in Kent.
Spandrel by Stevens.
do not appear so constructively important as the panels of pilasters.
. and so greater freedom is allowed to the artist.
horizontal line and a segment (Fig. Fig. except in the case of angular spandrels composed of a vertical and
Panel with trophy
arms and armour.
132 shows a well-balanced design for a right-angled spandrel between a round arch and a vertical line.
. 133. being mostly found in Saracen work and in arms and utensils. the work of the late Alfred Stevens. cases. 132) in all these balance must be the principle employed.io6
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
The sixth division. Unsymmetrical spaces to be filled with ornament are rare.
. 134 and 135.
Tail-pieces (Renaissance). or
Another phase of
leaf growth. while embody-
ing the best qualities of plant-growth .
for its various
uses and positions and at last perfected to such a degree of aesthetic purity in the Erechtheum. and well adapted
. ornament was the outcome of the study of plants and flowers. developed the pattern into more ornate forms. That characteristic Greek ornament. but full of
ornament. the Assyrians.
rendering of this flower in ornament is said to have been adapted from the Egyptian forms by the Chaldaeans
. is said to have originated from the Egyptian lotus flower. for in it we see vigorous life combined with grace and elegance. than to any other division in the domain of The best conventional and aesthetic floral nature.
later the children of those ancient flower-
the honeysuckle or anthemion.
. and not from the honeysuckle the conventional
. or the Sacred Horn. as to lose all traces of any particular plant. The Greeks in their turn
are supposed to have copied the anthemion from the Assyrians at first it was archaic and stiff.CHAPTER
more indebted to plants and suggestions in design.
clothing stems. Leaflets and 136. the bedstraw and the madder that have their sets of leaves arranged in a whorl round the joints of their upright stems looking down on these leaves we notice that
. radiating like the spokes of a wheel.
studied in the
ornament. though Indian. Saracen.
obtained by grouping a cluster of leaves
this manner. 136.)
bracts growing at the junctions of stems and leaves also furnished ideas and forms for the making up of
and similar ornament
. This idea may have occurred to the ancients when designing their rosettes.
Rosettes or paterae from
and would appear
sight to be derived from flowers. 137 and 157.
There are many plants for instance. composed of leaf and
results. very good ornament is often composed of a stem or meander clothed with these bracts alone.
circular in plan.
the plan appears like a rosette. are finer and stronger in than any imitation of flowers. in fact. either straight or curved.
but more use
of these bracts in what
sheaths. particularly appearance in sculptured work. (See Fig. and Mediaeval decoration abound in examples of the
. but are mostly a cluster of leaves. Root forms are not much used in European ornament.
of the various styles.
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
(See Fig. 138.)
treatment of roots.
ornament the of having been pulled up and hung to dry, appearance This must always be an objection to their use, unless the root can be shown in the ground consequently the Roman and Renaissance artists let their ornament
gives the whole
Bracts used for "clothing" stems in
spring from vases or clusters of leaves. When roots are used it is clear that the general outline of the root
must alone be taken, and the character of the growth
expressed simply, to prevent confusion and obscurity.
Mediaeval and Oriental root forms.
a rule, all redundances, excrescences, and accidental waywardness of growth, that might be interesting to a botanist, ought to be avoided in the
decorative rendering of plant form the average form and the higher beauties should alone be expressed. Though this may seem a paradox, the less realistic
we make our
designs, the more nature we put into should strive to put the most perfect forms of nature into our ornament, avoiding those that are poor and stunted, as well as over-nourished
and rank ones, though nature abounds in fyoth. In Persian l ornament we find flower and plant
thoroughly decorative manner
Laurel from nature.
and 119); the pink and hyacinth were as great favourites with Persian decorators as the maple and vine were in mediaeval work, the lotus and
There are many
styles of Persian
the Achaemenides, probably that of the Macedonians after the conquest of Persia by Alexander the Great, that of the Sasanides,
that of the Saracens after they conquered the country,
influenced by the subsequent
Mongul conquest. That ornamentation which is generally Persian, except modern work, seems to be Saracenic,
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
papyrus in Egyptian, the peony in Chinese, and the chrysanthemum in Japanese while such styles as the Greek, Roman, Celtic, and Saracenic are more purely
conventional, and, without having based pn natural forms.
design cannot be too strongly advised the habit of making correct drawings of to cultivate
FIGS. 140 and 141.
Borders derived from the
kinds of plants, both in flower and fruit, especially those of single flower and of simple growth, ac-
companied by careful notes of the construction at the stem and leaf junctions.
analysis of a
and be useful to show the student the construction of the plant, but it makes a very poor show in an artistic design. Landor the poet said it
was an act of cruelty to cut a flower from its stem it would be interesting to know his opinion of that school which believes in dissecting plants to find " new forms," many of whose designs present novelties that nature never dreamt of, such as leaves neatly cut in half, elevations, and sections of petals, stamens, pistils, seed pods, and other curious forms suggested
Wild rose from nature.
dissections, so that the design
an anatomical preparation, and certainly pleted of any violation of the second commandment. innocent
section through some flowers may, however, give suggestions of outline for some flat ornament. The testimony of the best old decorative design is against It is refreshing to see that in England this practice.
the oak. wood.
be woven stuff.and for stonepomegranate. muslins. others. Messrs.
a paper-hanging from the_wild[rose. whether
FIG. and to choose the kind best adapted to the purpose as the hareit
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
At the same time. a too carving. and for iron-work. lemon. and a few
Edward Burne-Jones. Morris. orange. who prefer nature to novelty. it is well to bear in mind the material to be decorated.
the wild poppy. 143. grasses. rigid
of most importance
to adhere to the growth
In selecting plants for particular purposes.
mainly owing to the
Crane. and delicate ferns for
. cottons. or metal-work. adherence to these principles is not to be advised. and lace and the mallow for wood.
Borders of medallions in enamelled earthenware by Luca della Robbia.
146. 141. 146. a plant
like the laurel (Fig.
for instance. &c. &c.
. for all-over patterns. plants of upright lily.
suitable for panels of almost any form. 145) are both
border. 142) and the lemon (Fig.
FIG. and the iris.
FIG. or for paper-hangings.
a carved wood panel from the lemon plant.)
growth. such as the
For narrow upright panels. 145.) The wild rose (Fig. 139) is best suited for
nature.THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENf
and character of the plant we use
. (See Figs. the ox-eye.. 140.
might be best adapted for a floor.)
(See for illustrations Figs.
148. looked at from above.
.PLANT FORM IN ORNAMENT
are most suitable.
FIG. 147 and
A trailing vine makes a good ceiling decoration. such as the dandelion. 148.
Panel arrangement from the Tiger lily. &c.
and was so used by the Byzantine mosaic workers. the daisy. or a table*
Lastly. 147. a carpet..
plants of horizontal growth.
The story told by Vitruvius oi obscurity about it.
. like the anthemion of the Greeks. i).
Acanthus Mollis from nature. but. lib. There have been
suggestions concerning the identical plant from which the acanthus ornament is derived. Vitruvius with the first use of the acanthus in The ornamental forms of the acanthus capitals. Callimachus is credited by cap.ii8
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
The well-known conventional acanthus and its must now be described. At any rate. the sculptor Callimachus having the Corinthian capital suggested to him. is a plausible and certainly a pretty one (Vit. 149. there is some
FIG. by finding the plant
growing round a basket covered by a square tile. 4.
leaves from Greek capitals.
Acanthus Spinosus from nature. as we know it
the capitals of the Greek and
151. The acanthus. the first two have been drawn from nature.
. and are consequently less pipes marked in examples of smaller work.
leaf from a capital of the
Tower of the Winds.
. especially when
to the base of the leaf
(See Fig. such as may
adorns the bell of a capital. impart that strength and dignity which is necessary for architectural foliage. together with the central stalk.
FIG. 154. 151.120
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
Roman Composite orders. taper downwards these pipes. is an artistic adapted to suit the ends of a grand style of architecture.) The are less important.
ornament from the natural leaf lies in the " pipes " " that start from the " eyes at the base of the leaflets. and not an imitation of a particular
far less serration this
imparts dignity to the
seen in the natural foliage leaf.
leaf with flowers from a capital of the Choragic of Lysikrates. 152. more serrations and more detail may be put into them. and owing to the fact that the leaves are smaller in scale and nearer to our eyes.ACANTHUS LEAF ORNAMENT
be found in the acanthus of candelabra and panels. with the and pipes still prominent while on candelabra and small pillars the leaves lie flatter. for the smaller the scale the more detail is necessary.
more serrated and smaller variety is used. On modillions a
FIG. and the leaflets overlap.
the Corinthian capital. in which constructive strength is not required. the acanthus presents a simple edge exactly repeated on each leaflet.
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
the olive leaf acanthus variety. Chapter. 153.
leaf of capital.
and undercut channels of Fig.
and at the Temple of Vesta at Tivoli the 1 88). or the soft-leaved kind. and the Pantheon at Rome (see Figs.
that kind of acanthus that
as the Acanthus
spinosuSy or the prickly variety . while
.ACANTHUS LEAF ORNAMENT
(See Fig. 154.)
prevent the foliage in the latter
examples from appearing flimsy. 156.
for the raffles of the
leaves in the capitals of Jupiter Stator. the Romans preferred the Acanthus mollis.
olive leaf variety
from a capital of Mars Ultor. the edges of the leaves should be slightly thickened and
rounded so as to catch the
quality to the decoration. as it would naturally do with an overlapping edge much cut up. 154. 185. Mars Ultor.
thus giving a rich
The Greeks mostly used
Soft-leaved acanthus from the soffit of the architrave at the temple of Jupiter Stator. is overdone with decoration. for instance.J24
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
have the oak-leaved variety.
bit of the
The Romans sometimes used
Acanthus used on candelabra and small
pillars. 186. (See Fig.) The
in a lavish
more modern type of acanthus used on majolica
FIG. overloading mouldings with it the cornice of the Temple of Jupiter Tonans. 156.
sea-weed and poppy-leaved acanthus used in
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
The utmost freedom in the curve
. Of late years there is a kind of scroll-work much favoured by some ornacannot of course be called new.
ornamentalists and writers on art to seek for a
that the greater part of the leafage play of the brush. and the wild poppy (Fig.
subsequent styles of decorative foliage down to the Saracenic and late Romanesque. generally found in combination with animal forms and grotesques. and what is bad. will application.
have given their attention to it. can we hope to vie with the ornamental
. so that nothing long enough to become national ornament. The foliage is more like sea-weed than anything
mentalists.ORNAMENT DERIVED FROM THE ACANTHUS
in painted decoration is of a very free but it only holds a secondary place. being character. afford the best examples of this painted foliage. perhaps in time stamp it with a traditional character.
else. art .
forms of the acanthus
being logical enough
when we consider
generated by J 590 The arabesques of the Vatican. and its modifications have shown the difficulty of
improving on the Classic type. and many but no lasting results
a faint resemblance to the
acanthus. have as yet been obtained.
be good. The acanthus was the parent
Fig. have no fixed principles of ornamental
good. few be in this world but its persistent things from illumination to stone-carving. and the Italian cinque-cento ware.
Winter aspect of a pear
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
of Greece. 132. (See Fig.'s tomb.)
. and gloried in the worship of the beautiful ? To gain a fuller insight into
the delicate varieties of the acanthus.
Alfred Stevens has done more than any one of late years to properly apply the acanthus.
unity of artistic thought. the student is advised to carefully examine and draw the foliage
and natural forms as aids to memory. facts.
not be in relation to
the thing decorated e.
from the picture-writing of barbarous tribes the of these pictures were used on the one symbols hand for letters. and are interesting alike to the historian. used to decorate
and gateways of mosques. ornament abounds in mnemonic characters Japanese
vases. and the student of art. signs. It is not easy to draw the line between them. it is the lettering ends. and on the other for ideas.
the latter skirts the ground
of the former so
closely. candlesticks. and dresses. the antiquary.
or ideas so recalled
"mnemonic" classes of are large. The scenes. we see texts from the Koran in Kufic and other characters. hieroglyphics. in the case of
the decorative art of most nations. inscriptions can
be found on their buildings. and
and articles some illuminated not only difficult to know where
includes written characters. and other articles of domestic use.
Son of Ra. The art of illumination or decorative
writing really begins when there is a desire to have the written matter presented in a beautiful form." It is the third line of the twelve on this monument.
. and stone tablets.)
This diagram is the hieroglyphic inscription taken from the famous " Tablet of Four Hundred Years.
.SYMBOLIC AND MNEMONIC FORMS
whether the main end was not ornament rather than instruction. Ra-user-ma. and still have the same meaning. Ramases
King of Upper and Lower Egypt. Monogram and cipher are almost terms the former differs only from synonymous
alone was of importance.. that a monogram may have different forms of the letters in different positions. of ancient Egypt are mnemonical in character." The inscription at Fig. 163
occurs frequently in Japanese pottery it represents the word " Jiu. The decorations found on the tombs.
the latter in this respect. Chieftain enriching the lands with memorials of his name.
. if used as a signet or as a trade-mark." meaning longevity or everlasting life. and this was the
primary reason of their existence they were sculptured on the granite slabs.
. to record the names and virtues of the deceased kings and persons of note. Sotep-en-ra. 162. and to those who could not read the illumination
In the hands of artists have often been arranged as a highly ornamental cipher.
but at the same time they were made pleasing to the eye the perfect balance and even distribution of these inscriptions render them highly decorative. while a cipher
cannot have more than one particular form or else defeats its purpose. &c. (See
and they become mnemonic ornament.
. The globe sun.
an emblem of the Creator
said to represent the Sun.
Egyptians on papyrus and granite. has been found sculptured on the lintels of temple
doorways almost thirty
to symbolize the
in length. The crane itself is a symbol of long life the bamboo. has had. The winged globe so common in Egyptian art 164. and the plum together make a second is another. Art for its earthly handmaid. as an attribute. The disc or or Maker.
winged beetle (Fig.132
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
The Japanese symbols of longevity are the following the god of longevity.
the beginnings of art expressed religious thought by means of symbols the picture writing of barbarians.
This emblem occurs as a
. the outspread wings
the overshadowing presence of Providence. good
example of symbolic ornament may be seen at Fig. from the earliest Religion gourd period of man's history. a very old man with a large head and merry countenance. . and the The Scarab. and nine-tenths of symbolic ornament pertains to religious ordinances and ceremonies.
which all Another and more natural meaning
attached to the disc is that it represents the ball containing the egg which the beetle usually rolls to a place of safety. 161). holding a scroll in his
hands. the hieroglyphic or priestly compositions of the
. or asps dominion or the monarchy. the Runic and
Northmen and ancient
Celts. Nearly all
. where it is buried. were alike endowed with an occult meaning. and sometimes by a stork or a sacred tortoise. and in course of time new
it. the and the fir. and accompanied by a crane. but they were symbols to the initiated only. from
appeared just before the springing of the crops.
Egyptian Scarabeus. so there need be little wonder that it was worshipped by them as the emblem of
. the offerings to their gods. The canons or laws laid down by the Egyptian priests and chief scribes for the guidance of artists were for centuries
. 161. bears fruit. and it
is a species of lotus that said that the form of the Jewish
. and was also presented
as a peace offering to strangers
visitors. and immediately after the subsidence of the
ornament in some Egyptian ceilings.
earthly goodness. was drawn and sculptured by and no one was allowed to alter the type under
severe penalties. as
Nile it was therefore to the Egyptians the harbinger of their daily bread.
seven-branched candlestick was derived from
in the decoration of everything the fresh flowers were used in garnishing Egyptian. it was sacred as the type of coming
FIG. including representations
or lotus flower
pre-eminently characteristic of Egyptian ornament (see Fig. Nearly Egyptian ornament was symbolic.
" it is said.SYMBOLIC ORNAMENT
Museum). "and of the fruit of the palm-trees and of grapes.
animals. which grew on the slopes of the Hindoo Kush.
lotus came the palm as a was used by the Assyrians in was. such as the Egyptian sphinx and the winged bull of Assyria. and
was the plant from which inebriating drink was
FIG. called the "tree of life" (Fig. 166.
shelter. and hybrid creations. The date-palm is here surrounded by the sacred horn.
fircone. when surrounded by the
sacred horn. so
Sacred tree of
or horn (British
the tree of
The date-palm was certainly Eastern nations. had symbolical
meanings. affording them
In the sixteenth chapter of the Koran called the " Bee. 166). alcoholic
bas-reliefs. from an Assyrian
the Aryans. ye obtain an inebriating liquor and also good nourishment.
167. and Bacchus is said to have concealed spears under this head of leaves.
or staff of Bacchus. as the lotus was an emblem of water.
. This is known as the " thyrsus. 167.
wine also was made from
elements in these
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
was an emblem of fire. was carried by the Bacchanals and Maenads when celebrating the festivals of Dionysus.) The pine-tree to Dionysus. from its supplying turpen-
FIG. and adorned with ribbons.
The head of the thyrsus was often made of ivy leaves instead of the pine-cone." the Greek Bacchus. and thus
overcome those who were inimical to him (Diodorus
festivals. and this cone placed on a staff.
Three forms of the thyrsus or
and are symbolical of him in Greek and Roman decor-
Early Christian and mediaeval art are also teeming with symbolic ornaments. lib.
are often called indifferently emblems/' attributes.
sculpture. which has only one string left there is a weird feeling of loneliness about the
Hope. cherub's face.
Eve's tempter thus the rabbins have express'd."
vine and the ivy were also sacred to Bacchus." "symbols. and is mostly expressed 1 In a recent picture by human or animal forms.
we have a
allegorical illustration.ALLEGORICAL PAINTING
Sic. and the word is often applied to allegorical painting or
which is a representation of one thing under the image of another.
cap. Allegory is a kind of parable. bending her ear to catch the strains of a lyre which she plays." &c. in a figure seated
on a sphere.
iii. or the world. just relieved from utter desolation by the music that is left in the one string.
Watts. a reptile all the rest.
iii. These ornaments
being one of the greatest modern painters. however. and
Pagan symbols. also in the
. painted by Perugino.
The commonest form met with
. as the symbol of eternity.
the expulsion Scripture subjects are also introduced of Adam and Eve from Paradise is balanced by one
there were. Raphael's master. the queen having the club. Some of the medallions at the Loggias contain subjects said to be taken from antique gems. or an association of ideas.
for this. was adopted by the
Raphael. from its having neither beginning nor ending it often appears
as a serpent with
mouth. a cipher or a sign conveys to our minds an idea. added to the beauty of this sort of decoration by the exquisite drawing and composition of the figures. we call it a "symbol" particularly if the idea is connected with
in the Villa
Madama arabesques of the latter are said to have been copied from the plaster work in Hadrian's villa near Tivoli.
Borgia apartment at the Vatican. arabesques on the ceiling of the Sala del Cambio at Perugia.
and so avoided images and being persecuted they
. the lamb. or sacred
FIG. or sun-wheel. however. (See Fig The wheel form at Fig. in which a cross has the Rho formed on the upright stem. as a wheel of
. is the the shield of
emblem of the religion of Brahma Brahma and Vishnu. The tchakra. consisted almost The first Christians were fearful entirely of symbols.
used only a few symbols such as the fish.
to the Siamese a type of universal dominion. and the monogram of Christ. the dove. This last
and P (Chi and Rho). the Chi forming the cross as shown at A in Fig.)
badge of the Empire of Japan from the chrysanthemum.
century of our era to the fourth. and the symbol of eternity.SYMBOLIC SIGNS AND FORMS
early Christians. badge of the empire of Japan.
." called the
art. and has the first and last letters of the Greek alphabet (Alpha
consisted of two Greek letters
The "tchakra. a sign of disaster. lest their new converts should relapse into Paganism." or sacred wheel of Brahma and Vishnu. The wheel of fire.
. 170 another form of this is shown at B. 169 is.
derived. the kikumon or 1 68. Kiku-Mon. also " wheel of fire.
The circle in the shape of a wheel has perhaps had the widest signification in art. was an emblem of the Teutonic sun-worshippers.
C. Christ was sometimes repre. with our Lord as the pilot and the congregation as the passengers whence we
Good Shepherd caring for His sheep. 170. The Christian Church was symbolized under the form of a ship.
sented as Orpheus. at the bottom of which issue four streams.
world. amid the birds and beasts the commonest personification of
. we have the monogram that the Emperor Constantine placed on the labarum.
Imperial standard. as the
pertaining to the dreadful scene of the
was avoided. with a lyre in his hand. This form sometimes appears on the nimbus over the head of a lamb the latter sometimes stands on a round hill. after his conversion it was woven gold on purple cloth. and anything
. the whole " symbol signifying Christ the first and the last. in which He was always represented young and beautiful.
FIG. Every allegorical representation of the Founder of the Christian religion was rendered pleasing to the eye of the new converts.
Sacred Monograms in Christian Art. however."
whose gospels are the water of
"the four evangelists life to the whole
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
and Omega) written beneath the arms.
SYMBOLIC SIGNS AND FORMS
Counter-change ornament. because its Greek name
FIG. with the monogram The Vesica piscis. the pelican of the Atonement. in spite of its living in salt water it is found engraved
. was also the Greek name for the
and of the Holy Spirit. Spanish embroidery.
the symbol of a Christian passing through the world without being sullied by it. the Saviour.
the word nave (of a church). often encloses the Virgin and Child. a naus. or fish a'nd other inscriptions. 171. and
in the soft stone of the
early Christians took refuge). It was also used as the Son of God. The dove in Christian art
. a ship. as the fish is sweet.
" 'Ix^s (Ichthus) contains the initials of Jesus Christ.
ship inner part of a temple. from navis. One of the symbols of our Lord is a fish. and the phoenix of the Resurrection.
as typical of Christ. respectively as a lion.
St. and the eagle St.142
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
of the seals of religious houses. Many plants are used as symbols
in Christian art
the vine. inlaid marble.
is. John. the man St.
allusions to the vine
In Scripture we find frequent the wine-press is
. a calf. and
emblem of the death of Christ. and has always
. emblem of purity. &c.
"Passion. The four evangelists are represented
colleges. and an eagle. the calf St. abbeys. Mark being the lion.
passion-flower. 172. during Byzantine times
Matthew. name denotes. as
we read in Isaiah. a man. was.
and the Middle Ages.
The trefoil is an emblem of the Trinity.
often engraved on the tombs of early Christian virgins. It was the royal insignia of France mediaeval Florence
used as a decoration
in sculpture. is derived the
flower de luce.
FIGS. or fleur-de-lis^ one of the finest conrenderings of any flower it was much
Gothic decoration. From the iris. the fiorino .
ing during the thirteenth and following centuries.
Interchange ornament. from King Solomon down to our own Queen.
The symbolic and mnemonic
. and is a common
on her shield and on her was used in the crowns of
been used as the attribute of the Virgin Mary in We find this plant pictures of the Annunciation. painting. 173 and 174. formerly called a lily.
only in a minor
degree. If they wanted allegorical subjects they confined them to their figure subjects. and the cesthetic alone remains.
correcting the peculiarities of the individual study of the best specimens of a whole class
. on flat and curved surfaces. they concentrated their whole attention on perfecting floral form.
away from it without spoiling its The same may be said.
as the eye
music is a composition of harmonious sounds it has little subject-matter. and is analogous to aesthetic ornament. which was to beautify what they had in hand.
by by a and
making the most perfect type of radiating ornament. They attained
their figures. The Greeks were contented with the
simple solution of the problem before them.
form we owe to the clearness and directness of the Greek mind. This ornament has perfect fitness. solely created for their beauty. and of adapting it to sculpture and painting.144
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
described. for you can neither add
thus succeeded in
perfection. only the ear is charmed by the former. and being thus freed from other disturbing elements.
. of the colour applied to the carved patterns of the Saracens and Moors they are both aesthetic works.
not only because ornament is used as an enrichment to
ON THE ORDERS OF ARCHITECTURE
that a short chapter on the orders
be useful to students. The rigid lines of architecture should act as a foil to the graceful curves of
ornament. instead of setting off each other's characteristic beauties.
speak of ornament. I think it L
but also because a very much larger proportion of it is used in conjunction with architecture. and without some slight knowledge of
the subject. and I may point to the Doric frieze of the Greeks as a
example of success. and the plain faces should not only set off fretted surfaces. however. the ornament and the architecture.
include the highest form of it. the human figure.
. demands high qualities in the ornament. are
apt to spoil one another. but make the undulations of carved
ornament precious. This conjunction of ornament and architecture. and insight in the artists as to what is wanted for mutual contrast or emphasis and if this be successfully accomplished.
Mouldings which form so great a feature in architecture as
the saying that mouldings are architecture. and in the proper contrast bf forms.
mental colouring as well as monumental form the examples of such colouring may be seen in
of the grand buildings in Italy and at Con-
are useful to the
ornamentalist who has to design the shapes of small objects . sculpture.146
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
must be conceded that the combined work gives a than the uncombined excellence of each. the stately dignity of a grand room utterly destroyed by colossal figures. but you may also see magnificent halls and churches. and painting attained their highest excellence. tends to degrade the architecture with which it is associated." give lessons in elegance of shape. Mean ornament. the painter. is equally
valuable for the division of spaces for ornament. The elaborate system of proportioning parts to one
another and to the whole. has by use of gigantic figures dwarfed the vast chapel I may add that there is monuinto a doll's house. sculptor. or by the ornament being on too large a scale.
coloured to look like French plum-boxes.
when architecture. whether of figures or plants. Sophia . notably at St. Mark's and at Sta. I have
seen in modern work. and
. while the Corinthian capital has been the prototype of most of the floral
to the present day. in his superb ceiling at the Sistine Chapel. and may spoil it by the main lines not properly
contrasting with the adjacent architectural forms. Michelangelo. which is so important in architecture as to be its main characteristic.
which is not archaeology.
of a column supporting an and cornice.
and architects. The cornice was the projecting boarded eaves while the slanting
. comprising the triglyphs or ends of the trusses.
mer. the fascias show that in some instances this bressummer was composed of three balks of timber. and the filling in between them. and bore the trusses of the roof.
. only some of the best examples need be referred to. except in the Doric shaft.ORDERS OF ARCHITECTURE
architect have not only sympathized with one another. each projecting slightly over the one below. which is called the architrave.
purpose. In some of the paintings on the Greek vases may be seen the processes by which the Doric and Ionic capitals were evolved but for our
sculptors. but each one has been no mean judge of the sister
arts. and engineers as well. columns of the Greeks and early Romans.
it. The column generally consists of a entablature. a capital. after the wooden
hut had been converted into a marble temple. painters. and a base. which were baseless. The capital was the capping-piece which you now see put on the tops of story-posts
frieze. The metopes were left open in early Greek temples. musicians. The frieze was the wide band immediately above the architrave and below the cornice.
. and immediately before are to be found who were goldsmiths. and some few who were poets. The origin of the orders was probablyin the verandah of the Greek wooden hut. which is called the metope.
to shorten the bearing of the bressumwas what we now call a bres-
of the architrave
enlarged section of annulets at A. 175.FIG.
with a circular echinus
bottom with rings a little below them is a deep called the necking.
is capped by a square band the frieze. the finest example of the Doric.
called annulets. projecting pieces. . and is divided longitudinally by the triglyphs. and were thus acquainted
with the forms of the sea and of
shells. not only the earliest. or echinus.
. and the shaft The Greeks were a seafaring
finished at the
under it. the architrave is plain. ornamented with two whole and two half vertical channels. when it has lost its spines. mainly inthe sea-shore. the islands of the Archipelago.THE GREEK DORIC ORDER
undersides of the mutules were copied slanting timbers of the roof. The ovolo moulding that was most used was called the cyma or wave. and beneath it.
twenty shallow segmental flutes that finished under the capital. and narrow sunk chase has no base.
it inscriptions called the taenia or
. in the composition of lines. begin with
the DORIC. At
the Parthenon. and in I their arrangements for light and shade.
. and was once adorned with golden
moulding square cymatium. from which the word triglyph takes its name below the taenia is a narrower square moulding the width of the triglyph. with its
ornamented with drops called
guttae. and was
probably called after it. is capped with a carved astragal. habiting and the edges of Asia Minor. but because the
Greeks showed the greatest artistic sensibility in their choice of forms.
of the Greek orders.
of the Doric capital resembles the shell of the seaurchin. which consists of a thick square cap
called the abacus.
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
to this as a
device both to relieve the
monotony of the
and to weld the architrave
triglyphs begin at the angles of the frieze, and range centrally over all the rest of the columns, with an additional triglyph between
each, though in the frieze over the larger central opening of the Propylaeum there are two intermediate
the nearly-square metopes between the are filled with figure-sculpture. The cornice triglyphs consists of the square mutule band, from which the
mutules project, whose slanting underside
and above the mutules is their capping, with drops a narrow fascia under the corona the corona or main projecting member of the cornice is throated at the
capping consists of a wide fillet, with a hawk's-bill moulding under it. deeply-throated, These together form the most superb piece of archiits
and has called forth the
rapturous admiration of all the tasteful in the world, from the time it was built to the time of Ernest
Renan, one of its latest distinguished admirers. I have lingered over this order because it masterpiece for all time. Those who have seen
England alone are possibly convinced that this praise has been ill-bestowed yet even these would change their opinion if they saw it when perfectly white on
a clear day in bright sunshine but in London, even at its best, the clear air and fierce sun of Athens is
wanting, as well as the pentelic marble, and the chances are that the sculpture in the metopes has been
This Doric of the Greeks
ure, fitted to the climate,
and made by men of genius
charm the most
gifted race the world has seen.
THE GREEK IONIC ORDER
the Greek architect no thought and no labour was too great in designing his building, to form it so that the
sun would play melodies on
from dawn to dusk. Such
truly national architecture cannot be imported into a different climate without losing most of its effect, nor
be transferred to a coarse and opaque material
without losing much of its charm while its sculpture, the finest the world has yet seen, portrayed national traditions or events connected with its faith. But even
here in London,
you see paraphrases of Greek
tecture just painted white on a clear sunshiny day, you will see a faint reflex of its pristine glory. The rising
that the sun
makes on the
shades and sharp blue the finest thing an architect has ever comsculpture that adorned its the Elgin room of the British
The splendid may be seen in
Museum. This one example
a model for those
seek perfection in exquisite simplicity, for almost all the mouldings are square ones, and there is no enrichment beyond the highest figure-sculpture, and one
carved astragal and I may add, that the perfection of the whole composition of the Temple is as
great as that of this part.
The example, given on account of from the Temple on the river
from that of the Doric by being of by having twenty-four deep with fillets in its shaft, by having a
cushioned capital inserted between the thin moulded
Entablature, capital and base of the Greek Ionic
Temple on the
THE GREEK IONIC ORDER
abacus, and a shallow echinus carved with the egg and tongue. The peculiarity of this cushioned cap is,
that each side of the front
and back faces are formed and come down considerably below the into volutes, bottom of the capital, and are carved on the faces with
a shell spiral. 1 The junctions of the plain surfaces of the volutes with the projecting circular echinus are
masked by a half honeysuckle.
the bottom of
a circular pedestal or base of slight projection, consisting of an upper and lower torus joined by a hollow (trochilus), the upper torus being horizontally fluted and the lower one plain,
In this case the architrave
though its capping (cymatium) consists of a fillet with a plain cyma and astragal beneath. The frieze, which has no triglyphs, is supposed to have been sculptured with figures its cymatium consists of an ogee and astragal, to admit which the underside of
deep and without mostly three
deeply hollowed out
the corona consists of a narrow
the cymatium of and a cyma.
existed on the
The crowning member probably only
raking sides of the pediment.
a treatise for
sketch of the subject for ornamentalists, one example is enough to show the difference between the Doric
Ionic, but the capital of the most ornate example, that of the Erechtheum, is given its main differences from the former one being these, that the
Dr. Richter's discoveries at Cyprus,
that the Ionic volute
seems probable from an enlarge-
of the Egyptian lotus.
a neck carved with
ornaments and a carved
necking. and section of the Ionic capital.
Side elevation. that in the entablature there are three fascias to the architrave.
Section. that the column has
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
ornaments on the mouldings are carved instead of
only being painted.
FiG. from the Temple on the Ilissus.
Plan. 177. and the sweeps of the capital as well as the spirals of the volutes are more numerous.
.THE GREEK IONIC ORDER
half of the Capitol from the north portico of the Erechthenm at a regular guilloche with coloured glass beads in the eyes.
FIG. to show how much it is improved by making the top of the
curved instead of
more graceful and as a
Doric.C. and from the Mausoleum
are at the British
. according to Vitruvius. rule more ornate than the
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
have given too the capital of the internal Ionic
columns of Apollo Epicurius at Bassse. but
The Ionic is straight. from the Temple at Bassae.
Ionic. capital. 179..
Capital from the
Temple of Apollo Epicurius
Callimachus. invented this and is supposed to have lived about 396 B. from the last at Ephesus.
Temple of Diana
The main importance
beauty. were forced to bend
the Corinthians after that pattern. After her burial. a citizen of Corinth. and carried them to the grave and put them on the top.)
. and charmed by the style and novelty of its form.
(Vit. put forth its leaves and shoots about spring time these shoots growing against the sides of the basket.
give you here the story Vitruvius Besides the prettiness of the serves as an incitement to the reflection.
those whose hand and eye are trained will only observe what they see. covered them with a tile. her nurse ill
gathered the things in which the maid most delighted when she was alive.
and so that they might last the longer in the open air. that
invention. passing by that grave. The acanthus root
meanwhile. who from the elegance and subtlety of his sculpture was called Catatechnos by the Athenians. it is the only undoubted
Europe. they may get notions for
inventions. was and died. put them into a basket.
being adopted by the as their favourite order and used throughout
their dominions. By chance this basket was put on an acanthus root. Then Callimachus. noticed the basket and the tender growth of leaves round it. 10. lib.THE GREEK CORINTHIAN ORDER
the Great was born
Besides the beauty of this order of the choragic monument of Lysikrates.
cap. pressed by the weight. made his columns
by the weight of the corners of the tile and to make themselves into volutes.
FIG. capital and base of the Lysikrates monument.
and forms much smaller volutes than those immediately below them. The third cauliculus comes from
between the two former. of
date. is hollowed out horizontally on the four sides in plan.. out of each sheath spring three cauliculi the one most distant from the centre forms a
. Another was found at Athens by Inwood. near Miletus. touching
. about half the height of the eight acanthus leaves of the upper row these have a
blossom between each pair of leaves.
do not look on work as Greek that was done
after the second century B.
The abacus of the capital is deep and moulded. and there is a graceful capital of one of the engaged Corinthian columns at the Temple
of Apollo Didymaeus. and is supported by the turned-over top leaf of the sheath
. at Branchidse. and has the sharp angles of the abacus cut off.
Above the top.C. while the Doric capital of the Parthenon is only about half a
diameter to the necking.
the lowest cauliculi form two volutes touching one another at the centre. and at the sides of the centre leaf.
capital of the
more than one and a half times as high
as the lower diameter of the column.THE GREEK CORINTHIAN ORDER
Corinthian capital was found by Professor Cockthe Temple at Bassae. and the Ionic capital of the Erechtheum about eight-tenths. supposed by him to
have been used there. The
cap consists of a bottom range of sixteen plain water leaves. on each of the four sides of the capital. spring two
volute under one side of the angle of the abacus.
when Greece became a
Capital of the Lysikrates monument.
to leave the frieze
clear for the sculptured history of Bacchus".
profiles of their
.an affluence of rarely used
and there is a' little floral sprig between the angle volutes and the honeysuckle.
excellent figure sculptors. who bore in
can do without them.
great people as they were in sub-
. turning some pirates into dolphins.
has always seemed to
the slight variations
in their profiles to get perfection.
. and slightly to conic sections. but the outline of the capital is not happy. but turning the reverse
have noticed that the perfecting of the human shape by training was brought about by slight variations. exquisitely graceful. The entablature is Ionic." and adapted every part of their buildings to produce the effect of light and shade they
mouldings were mostly every jexample we have. artists. the fa$e of each one inclined inwards. and they must
their passion for simplicity. so as to have jnostly approximate the shade less uniform. and a cymatium.
THE ROMAN ORDERS. Above the cymatium of the
The Greeks were consummate
mind the adage
a cornice with a heavy dentilled bed mould. their intimate knowledge All their recruits were exercised naked. segments of circles being and there was in Athens. The architrave is deep
with three equal fascias.THE GREEK CORINTHIAN ORDER
at the centre.
were greatly due to of the nude human figure.
from the middle of these springs a honeyis
as high as the top of the abacus. to relieve the bareness
The foliage of this capital is of the basket or bell.
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
a portion of jugating. and civilizing so great the world. were
FIG. and possibly on that very account. governing.
Romans were slaves
to easy rules
not artistic in the sense that the Greeks were. 182.
ROMAN ORDERS; THE TUSCAN AND DORIC
the profiles of their mouldings were struck with compasses, and they were almost destitute of good
had, however, a passion for
magnificence, and for ornate stateliness and dignity, and they rarely, failed to get these in their public monuments." Besides the three orders which were taken from the
Greek examples of their own time, the Romans added two, the order of the Tuscans, and an invention of their own called the Composite.
The Tuscan is described by Vitruvius, lib. 4, cap. 7, as an incomplete Doric, but with a base and a round The portico of St. Paul's, Covent Garden, by plinth.
the best example
from the learned
of the earliest examples, with the exception of that at Cora, which is rather debased Greek than
Roman, is the example on the Theatre of Marcellus at Rome, finished by Augustus. The column is not
and has no base, and the capital has been greatly altered from that of the best Greek examples. The abacus has a cymatium the echinus has been reduced in depth, and is an ovolo, and the annulets are merely three plain fillets the column too has a neck and a necking. In the entablature the architrave is
the Theatre of Marcellus.
The crowning members
of the cornice are conjectural, for the whole has been broken
Entablature, capital, and base of an angle column, at Temple of Fortuna Virilis.
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
In the frieze
shallower than in the Greek examples.
the triglyphs are over the centres of the angle columns the guttae are the frustums of cones, while those of the
Greeks were cylinders or with hollowed sides the and the mutules cornice has a dentilled bed mould
have disappeared, but their edge runs through and the soffit is slanting, and ornamented alternately with coffers and small guttae, six on face and three deep
besides, the cymatium of the corona is capped by a large cavetto this in the Greek examples was only
of the slanting sides of the Doric columns at the
Colosseum, at Diocletian's Baths at Rome, and elsewhere. The Doric, best known to us, was elaborated
Italian architects of the Renaissance.
The Ionic was not much more to the taste of Romans than the Doric, for, with the exception of
examples buildings, where the orders were one over the other, the Temple of Fortuna piled up Virilis is the only good example, although there is a very debased one at the Temple of Concord. The columns of the Temple of Fortuna Virilis somewhat
resemble the Greco-Roman ones of the Temple of Bacchus at Teos they have similar paltry capitals, and
an Attic base, but their truly Roman entablature is very notably worse than that at Teos, in fact, it might be used as an example of what to avoid in profiling. The cornice is crushingly heavy for the frieze and architrave, the parts are disproportionate, the corona
having almost disappeared to make room for the
Entablature. 185. and base of the Pantheon.7
From some foliage on the top of the upper
of this capital took the Romans. the outer ones form the volutes under the angles of the abacus. by making it a greatly improved four-faced capital. and the floral ornaments on some of the mouldings are gigantic.
THE ROMAN CORINTHIAN. The best Roman example I can give you is that of the Pantheon the existing portico is believed by M. good examples of the other orders.i68
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
extra crowning member. it has the days comparative simplicity that characterized some of the
The capital has two buildings just before our era. Its main importance to us is from the use made of it by the
some of whom. the upper row not rising to
quite so great a height above the lower ones as these do above the necking. At any rate. and there is space between the upper leaves to show the stalks of the sheaths of the cauliculi. the only
undoubted Greek Corinthian order that has come
though we have many Greco-Roman examples. and above these a curled leaf masks the overhanging of the angles of the abacus. are rare. made in the of Septimius Severus. by adding a necking and putting
festoons from the eyes.
to be a copy of Agrippa's. the inner ones finish under the rim of the basket. thus giving the capital greater
depth and importance. except of the Composite. rows of eight leaves.
. As I said before. however.
Corinthian. 186.i6 9
Entablature of Jupiter Tonans.
The shafts are unfluted.
a stalk runs up behind the cauliculi. The egg itself is covered with ornament. and is set in the centre of acanthus leaves. who has given us
. and an astragal carved with the bead and modilion band with carved modilions. leaving only the upright line.
the counterpart of The smaller scale. I shall only draw your attention to two points in
the bottom edge of whose projections are moulded. as a contrast to the almost stern simplicity of that of the Pantheon. We must praise the boldness of the author. a reel. and
shallow corona. and has nothing on
inscription. which is overladen with ornament.
and a deep cyma-recta-cymatium
centre and of the volute have lost the floral character
and become stony. the omission of the tongues between the eggs. and the attempt to turn the egg and tongue into a foliated form.
have added the fine and gigantic capital of Mars Ultor and the entablature of Jupiter Tonans. with two scotias separated by double astragals and fillets. and
in the abacus. and have the favourite Roman base.
than the architrave. the whole architrave is capped with a cymatium
consisting of a wide fillet and an ogee with an The frieze is slightly shallower astragal beneath. The entablature consists of an architrave of three fascias. an ovolo carved with the egg and tongue. being of granite.
bed mould consists of an uncut dentil band.170
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
leaf. a plain upper and a lower torus.
the lower parts of the bands and the spaces between the spirals being filled with foliage.THE ROMAN COMPOSITE
new ornament. that a carved Ionic echinus has been put in at the level of the bottom of the Corinthian cauliculi.
fault of the capital
that the upper
part has no artistic connection with the lower. The example given is from the Arch of Titus. from which a
up above the top of the abacus. It may be imagined
the foliage above the upper row of leaves
Corinthian capital has been removed.
COMPOSITE. main thing to be remarked is the capital for the
. its volutes are too
for the rest. less ornate than that of Jupiter Tonans or Jupiter Stator.
varieties of leaves
body of the book.
must. and taken merely as an isolated capital. from the mixture of Ionic and Corinthian motives in its capital.
them. and from each side of the calix spring curved bands running into the hollow of the abacus and ending in heavy volutes coming down to the tops of the upper row of leaves. and very inferior to the latter in its proportions. erected
The to celebrate the taking of Jerusalem in 70 A. give the
credit for the merits of the invention. however. but deplore his want of tasteful invention which has forced him to give a bad one.
This order has been called the Composite.D. that on the
centre of the echinus there
a calix. The parts
of the bell thus
of the cauliculi have two
bare by the omission of the sheaths little scrolls of foliage to cover
Half of the
the volutes of Corinthian Columns
FIG.THE ROMAN COMPOSITE
saw that in tall columns.
composite capital from the Arch of Titus. 188.
were too insignificant.
. and was applied everywhere. and in this case the columns are on pedestals. This capital when once invented took the Romans.
. Arch of Titus.tnnnnnnnnff
FIG. and base. capital. 189.
Normand's Parallel of the Orders . and in Wilkins'
Pennethorne's of Magna Grcecia.
tecture . Penrose's Principles of Athenian Archithe books
. it was no solution.
published by the Dilettanti Temple of Jupiter Panhellenius Inwood's Erectheion . Artistically speaking.
of Architecture." godetz Cresy and Taylor's Architectural Antiquities of Rome . Those who wish to study this subject will find the Greek examples in Stuart and Rivett's Antiquities of
. by DesRoman. and we can imagine that if such a solution had been offered to the Athenians in their palmy days. the author would have been howled at. and
of a want that was
hunted out of the city.
in Cockerell's in
ALgina . J. I may mention that the orders that have passed through the hands of the Italian masters and been
by them are not Classical. but Renaissance. and Mr. Elements and Mathematical Principles of the Greek
Les Edifices Antiques de Rome.TEXT BOOKS ON ARCHITECTURE
practical solution for a practical people
A CHAPTER ON THE CONSTRUCTION OF SOME FIGURES AND CURVES IN PRACTICAL PLANE GEOMETRY USEFUL IN ORNAMENT.)
angles are not right angles.)
that which has three
acute angles. (Fig.
a square set angle-wise. and a rhomboid are
species of parallelograms.
a four-sided figure which has
opposite sides parallel.)
that which has three unequal
(Fig. (Fig. an oblong.
a triangle which has
three equal sites.)
that which has a right
angle.) Rhombus is a four-sided figure which has
. Isosceles triangle
that which has only two
sides equal. 8.
DEFINITIONS and names of
to 13. 5.
2. 6. 4. a rhombus.
equal. Polygons are named according to the
sides or angles they
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
Diamond is composed
Polygon is a plane rectilineal figure Polygons. contained by more than four straight lines. If one opposite pair of sides be parallel.
All other four-sided figures are called Trapeziums. 10.
Regular Polygon is that which has its sides and its angles also are equal.
unequal angles. and the other
pair not. An Irregular Polygon may have unequal sides and
unequal angles. or unequal sides and equal angles. or
equal sides and
regular polygons are only treated of. the figure
called a Trapezoid. 9.
of two equilateral triangles
back to back.
the diameter into the
number of equal parts. circle mark off K J and E F equal to the radius of the smaller circle. Join point 5 to F. Draw the diameter A F and divide it into the same number of parts as the required polygon is to have To divide in this case it will be five parts. and produce it to C.i8o
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
To draw an Exterior Tangent to two A B and C D K. the centres E and F cutting the circumference Join From K Bisect E F in G. parallel to 5 F With A and F as centre and to meet the diameter.
. 4'.. in the line K F cut off a part K P equal to the radius
Fig. Join the centres E and F. through which the interior tangent is
drawn. and draw the lines 4. To draw an Interior Tangent to two Fig. sides
Fig. and From K on the larger describe a semicircle on E F. given circles B E and F D. 3'.
and radius K F describe a semicircle and radius F P describe a circleThe semicircle cuts this circle at H. and draw E A parallel to F H.
A F as radius
describe arcs intersecting at L. of the larger circle at K.
of the smaller circle
B. which is the exterior tangent required. Join A C. At E draw E A parallel to F C. Join F H cutting the larger circle at C. Join F H. Set off any convenient
measurement five times on this line. and with F as centre and F J as radius describe an arc passing through semicircle at H.
Within a given circle to describe any Regular Polygon say a Pentagon.
. 3. The points of contact are A and C. 1 6. Bisect E F in G. 15. draw any angle to A F. &c.
square. K C. 19. Fig. On a given line to construct any Regular Fig.
meet the circumference at G and E. Divide the semicircle into as many parts as the Draw a polygon is to have sides in this case five. and E A each equal to A B. Join the points A.B.
Fig. and E.
the length of the side of the required polygon. say a Pentagon.
N. D. Special method of drawing an Octagon in
a given circle. E to complete the required pentagon.
Bisect angles B and and C. and half the diagonal of the square as radius.1
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
through the Second division on Join cutting the circumference at B. D E.
B F and
to each other. Produce the lines
at right angles
B K D in K A. and E A to complete the required polygon.
A F at A B. D.
D. which will be the centre
off the points
of a circle passing through the points and E. Bisect A B and B C to find P.
20. Join C D.
E. B. describe arcs
. and with B as centre and A B as radius describe a semicircle A C R. The eight thus found on the circumference are joined to points
the required octagon. B around the the length of the side
circumference at C.
With each corner of the square as centres. line from point B to the second division point Q C. making the distances
ABC. Produce the given line A B to R.
inscribed in a
setting off the length of
radius six times
round the circumference. C. Polygon. 1 8. and joining the points.
inscribe a circle in
at B and C. Bisect the angle
perpendicular to as centre and
to E. Produce
the line of bisection until
line at point
i. inscribe the
four required circles.
C. Produce B D
Fig. 21. Bisect any one of the angles made by a diagonal and one of the sides of the square.
lines of bisection intersect at
circle. as at D. 3. G.
diagonals and two lines through the
centre parallel to the sides of the given square B C D. and drawn perpendicular to C A as radius.
Draw the diagonals and two lines parallel to the sides through the centre of the given square. 22. to inscribe four equal circles each touching two other and one side of the square. Join these points to complete the required octagon.1
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
cutting the sides of the square at F. To describe a circle to touch two given Fig. 24. 2. square being given. With these points as centres. to inscribe four equal circles each touching two others and two sides of the square.
any two of the angles
At C draw a With at D. Join the extremities of the latter lines to obtain the points
as radius describe the required
one point of contact
meets the vertical centre
the central point
. square being given. H.
inscribe six equal circles in a given
equilateral triangle Bisect the angles of the given equilateral triangle as at E. describe
hexagon. &c. With D as centre and D K as radius inscribe one of the required circles. the line of bisection will cut
These are the centres of the required
If the central portion made by the meeting of the four were removed.
circle to obtain the
circles. F. also F H and H G parallel to the parallel sides of the triangle.
Join the points G. i. by produce the hexagon within the given
Bisect the angle the circle at point R. 3.
sides of the
hexagon. 25. &c.
off the length of the radius of the given six times on the circumference as at
B D F D E F.
Within a given circle to inscribe a Without the same circle to describe a hexagon. B G F.
points. and G as centres
obtain the point
inscribe the remaining circles.186
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
radius. and with the same radius and F. the remaining parts of the circles would form a figure known as the quatrefoil.
Bisect the angle
on C K.
i. &c. E.
H. Through D draw G F to B. Draw the three diameters A D. (3) Within the inner hexagon to inscribe three equal circles each touching each other and two
Fig. L. 2. 2.. lines to straight
circle. a form common in archi-
Through R draw H K parallel O as centre and O H as radius describe
a circle cutting the produced diameters at K. and draw the bisection lines through to meet
the centre of each side. and produce them a little beyond these
(3) Join the points G. 3. seven circles being inscribed instead
of five in a given
Fig. With i.
With the latter points as centres 4.
Bisect points draw radii. 29.188
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
Join the latter points to produce the required hexagon without the given circle.
Within a given circle to inscribe any circles.4 perpendicular to G B. 4 as radius and i as centre describe one of the required circles. A. 2. or three equal semi-
having adjacent diameters in a given circle.
number of equal
radii. 27. perpendicular to
28. 3 and 2 are the centres of the other two required
inscribe a trefoil.
Fig. Divide the circle in the same number of parts as
as radius describe a circle cutting the five radii in
i. 5. 27. E. as radius describe the remaining required
circle. Draw E C obtaining
any of the six sectors as at F on one of the radials. Divide the given circle into six equal parts by marking off the length of the radius six times on the
a triangle any two angles of which and E.
Draw E F
required in this case Bisect the angles B A. From point i thus obtained
D A and D DEF bisect as at D on D A and
inscribe a circle. E. 2. each touching the circumference and two other circles.
either side of
alternate radials perpendicular to
meet the and D C.
on the diameters.
This will obtain the points
if six of the L M.
C a hexagon would be
. 3. 2. The completed trefoil. M O. 30.
3 as centres. A B C
circle. This figure is very useful in designing geometrical and other repeating all over patterns in ornament. It will be seen that the triangle B C is made up of four similar triangles each equal to L N. thus
the sides of this triangle describe triangle the three semicircles required by using points I.
This makes the required equilateral triangle
circle. and the inscribed three semicircles
have their diameters adjacent. and without a given circle.B. and N O. Produce the latter radii to meet the tangents at
six radii dividing the given circle into six equal parts. as
to the circle at
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
and 2 F as radius. Join their alternate extremities as at
M N. To describe an equilateral triangle within Fig. or lines at right angles to L O.
the equilateral triangle without the
N. were placed around points B and smaller triangles.
I. 2. Also.
but not through
section through parallel to the opposite a Parabola.
from point X.
X A X parallel to the axis.
. or a section through X at any other angle greater than the angle made by the side and base. and X 3 respectively.
triangle. such as the section through any point below the apex.
the curve of the section
a plane passing through a cone parallel to one of
the curve of a section
a plane passing through a cone parallel to its axis. 33.
and 34 show the actual shape of the X 2. A
section through point to the axis of the cone is a Circle. as at 2. but is an Ellipse. on the axis.
of a cone
at right angles section passing
through and across the cone
not at right angles to the axis.
the curve of the section
made by a
plane passing obliquely through a cone from side to
sides. is a Hyperbola. and taken parallel to the base this would be a circle and a section through the apex perpendicular to the base would be an isosceles
Ellipse. The Cone may have other sections in addition to these.
as the Conic Sections are the
and the Hyperbola. or inclined at a greater angle to its base than its side. 32. sections I. as at X 3. as at
i.THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
CONIC SECTIONS. as at X 4. section through
through these meeting points the curve of the Parabola
between the working the Hyperbola and the Parabola is of this figure that the lines which in the Parabola were drawn parallel to G B. 31). are here drawn to a point E on C D produced. and A G into the Draw from C lines through the same number. the line C 2 (Fig.
drawn from B
.. as at i" 3" 5" &c.
. divisions as i. as C D. In this figure. and produce drop a perpendicular to
The curve of the required Ellipse will pass through the intersections of these lines. 31). This point E is found by drawing the line from 7 on D B to E on produced. Divide of
equal parts. 32. and from D lines to i' 2' 3' &c. where C E equals twice
Fig. 34. draw B.192
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
X O (Fig.
to/. In this figure the of the Ellipse is equal to
major or transverse axis X i. and Divide C draw lines from the points of division parallel to
meet the similar numbered
be drawn. 31). 2. and describe the semicircle/ kg. into any number of equal parts. 35. the Parabola.
number of revolutions
the longest radius
being given. C D being equal to X 3 (Fig. k h is then half the length of Divide A E the minor axis of the Ellipse. 33. B. 3 &c. and join the points of the divisions to C. while B is twice the length equal to B into any number of 2 (Fig. drop a perpendicular
or conjugate axis bisect parallel to through it F
to h meet the semicircle. B into the same number of equal parts. To find the minor
I (Fig. 31) in H.
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
4 <T6 7
into three equal parts for as as centre and B
radius describe a circle.
Spiral. by drawing four diameters.194
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
Divide the radius
the three revolutions. B is divided into Each of the three divisions on
eight equal parts. Through point the second division. and through point 16 with centre B describe a at arcs
order the next nearest diameter
8 with radius
of equal parts say eight. 35.
the point of
radius. 3 3''. describe a 8.
two divisions arcs are drawn as
no geometric means of drawing
. the cathetus
C F being
A' F' in Fig. Draw lines parallel to I through the points of division to P
and L. 4.
I. By joining T' S' parallel to S' F'. cutting C 3 in 7 and n.
form the eye of the
C and C B
Fig. Bisect in I and 4. will then form
the centres of the.
centre describe a circle
from 7 and 1 1 to &c. 36 (a) is describe the inner spiral. 3. I C into three equal parts. these points (6 and 10) draw lines to and Through O parallel to E H.
a perfect catenary curve
we can only
. 37. which cut the
line C 2 in the points 6 and 10. The points 1. The
V A' and
at right angles to F'
A" and equal to C
for obtaining the inner spiral
for the outer. F' S' is made equal to the equal to F' is drawn breadth of the fillet at the top F S. which mark its path as at i'.
Volute. Produce the sides i 2.
&c. series of quadrants which are to form the outer spiral that begins with the radius i F. In the
same way draw lines parallel N and R. and 3 4 to G. then drawing is obtained which will be the length of half the side of the square for drawing the inner spiral. 5. Fig. 2. 2 3. F (Fig. until it ends in its centre
at B.THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
described above for the division
To draw Goldman's
making the diameter 3 of these parts.> to the
then drawn through the points thus formed on the diameters. On i 4 draw a square. 2'.
formed by suspending a chain from two points and pricking points along the curve of the chain. These
mark the path
a cycloid curve
Goldman's volute. 38.
In the of the catenary. 36.
Fig. accompanying figure three catenary curves are drawn from a chain suspended from points A and B.196
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
The curve is it by an approximation in geometry.
three times the length of the radius of the make an angle of 30 at E.
the following method. Draw the vertical diameter of the circle C.THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
ing circle the line
given. and draw a line
B on which
In order to find the length of the circle rolls.
must be the length of the circumference of the given we must first find approximately that length by
Catenary curves. Draw at right angles to C. and which
. With centres
. &c. which must be drawn by freehand.
3'. drawn at right angles to C which the circle rolls.
i'. Divide now half the circle
M L. and
them at i" 2".
E L making ML. 2. describe arcs cutting
. The length A B can also be found approximately by dividing C D into seven equal parts. lines parallel to
From the points C. Join is the approximate length of half the Make C and C B each equal to circumference. 2'.i
THE PRINCIPLES OF ORNAMENT
The line of any convenient length. 3". the angle of 30 cuts C B in L.
A B = 22
of those parts. The curve A D.. M L
the length approximately of the on circumference. and taking
C. and B. and equal to parallel to
eight equal parts. 3. Complete the cycloid by drawing D B in a similar manner. will then pass through these points.
into eight equal parts.
" but was the sole aim of its production. the trident to Neptune. any of the terms are inadequately described here.
^Esthetic. and each had its proper attributes. the things assigned to any one.
other.GLOSSARY OF TERMS USED
Many of the terms which appear in this Glossary have been explained The reader should refer back to the text when in the previous chapters. 75.
the science of the beautiful.
Anthemion. but to aid its comprehen^
were added. a radiating ornament with a palmate outline suckle ornament of the Greeks. the seven cardinal virtues and the seven deadly sins were represented by allegorical figures. 67.
Attributes. the pea-
cock to Juno. or a shepherd with his flock.
76. Among the Christians. It was mostly confined to human figures. Amongst the Pagans the eagle and thunderbolt to Jupiter. &c. Amongst the Christians the nimbus was the attribute of divinity. not only means "beautiful.
to ornament. See page 143.
as Hercules with his club
health as a
the Pagans strength was shown woman with a serpent . the lily of chastity.
. or martyrdom. or alternating with
different forms in succession. In compositions that are not Balance. saintship. was an allegorical representation of Christ the Good Shepherd .
symmetrical the iveight of the masses must be alike on either side of
. equilibrium or counterpoise. a man holding a lamb. the representation of one thing under the image of another.
were represented as gods with crowns of sedge or rushes towns as gods or goddesses with mural crowns.
. and distinguishes it from symbolic and mnemonic ornament.
is usually applied to designate that ornament in which the most beautiful and characteristic floral forms have been abstracted and adapted to the material employed and the effect wanted. in colour black with ornamental forms where flat and sharp curves contrast with one another . by which one contributes to the effect of the other . decorating by means of horizontal
ornament. Figs. Ornament in which the leading forms are not apparent. These early conventionalized forms were sometimes
perpetuated through religious conservatism. the opposition of dissimilar figures or positions. 126 and 131. the shoot or stem of a plant forming the volutes under the
angles of the abacus.
formed by equidistant vertical and horizontal lines crossing one another. who could not copy. but the Greek has all the grace and vigour of
the highest plant form.200
a central axis
Checkering. is a vague technical term to express character and contrast in ornament.
all historic styles.
page 43Conventional. the outer ones being called volutes. &c.
. The outline is in which the colour or the ornament alternates.
circle. but only portray their impressions. or vice versa. a plain space alternating with an ornamented one. they are equally effective as ornament in their respective countries. 185. after the artists had become skilful.
there must be equality of weight in the
ment affords many admirable examples of balance. g. 187. or an enriched moulding round a plain panel. natural objects were highly conventionalized through the want of skill in the artists.
be found in
Figs. Saracenic. and Figs. &c. All ornament is more or less conventional. 181. and those in the centre of each face of a Corinthian capital .
and horizontal lines alternating . and Gothic ornament. vertical
Figs. thus the Egyptians and early Greeks represented water by the zig-zag.
See page 46. Fig. in modern works this name is mostly confined to
the central spirals. Colour.
. 27. while Gothic has mostly only the vigour. apart from the literal meaning of the word. interweaving or intricacy .
It is also characteristic of
the decadent periods of
in those of symmetrical outline with different fillings
In early decoration This is a word of great elasticity. and 188. The styles most characterized by conventional ornament are the Greek and the early Gothic . 180. the straight line with the
. the opposite of simplicity. covering a surface with a square pattern like a chess-board.
stripes. is mainly
Banding. 98 and 99. the curve formed by a chain hanging from two points.
Cymatium. the lily. the scales. as a leopard. Enlargement of Subject. 101. rocks. 118.
Emblem. Indian ornament gives the most mechanical instance of this.
the plain space and ornament proportionately distribution. 91 and 129. 54. See Balance. of courage .
Diaper. the figure of Bacchus is wanted for a given space which it does not fill . as a satyr. Figs. in opposition to realistic ornament.
to a vertical
ment. in painting. 109.
. but unhappily employed of late years to
designate any repeating patterns enclosed in geometric forms. as in outline by the pencil. and 119. g. &c. pen. including checkers and net-work. a thyrsus. harmony or elegance
in ornament . while good Roman and Cinque Cento pilaster panels give the
It is sometimes imartistic examples of this arrangement.
Figs. successfully conventionalized. 53. 130 and 160.
Doric. allegorical representation of some virtue or quality. 102. &c.
used as an
say the an emblem of watchfulness . Also Figs. of the See Appendix on the orders.GLOSSARY
Figs. by the brush
. In modern English it is a device. trees. in Latin. 49.
See Figs. but the latter may be used as a
symbol of the Virgin Mary. or point . means embossed ornament on vessels. properly used to designate the balancing of masses in a design.
cymatium of the
frieze. the due filling of the space may sometimes be attained by the addition of his attributes. a quality obtained by the use of contrasted but harmonious and dignified forms. a pattern in which the ornament and ground are mostly similar in shape but different in colour and alternate with each other.
54. and was the animal or thing that was painted on a shield to show the temper or striking
It is also quality or achievement of the warrior.
perhaps the least conventionalized of fairly good ornaConventional is also used
subsequently a pattern enclosed in repeating geometrical forms not composed of straight lines . 171 and 172. too often means leaving out all grace and vigour. expressed in a measured or proportionate quantity. e. of the architrave. inlaid work. the method of representing ornament by various means. accessories even may be wanted.
The Romans and
the Renaissance architects also
Convention now Figs. of justice . Figs. the capping
abacus of the
corona. and mosaic. Saracenic. arranged . the lion. derived from jasper. 107. a vine and grapes . originally employed to designate those coloured patterns on stuffs that suggested the flowerings of jasper . 101. and no. of purity . 143.
. absolute propriety
to its purpose
page 48. channelled in hollows. as in diapers. and word grot or
172. in of Lysikrates. 131).
grotto. When the fantastic arabesques decoration were discovered under the baths and
in grottoes. lozenge. from the
no. are Saracenic the chief geometrical forms for patterns in ornament. semi-circular.
a concise expression for those forms which denote the special vigour shown by plants at certain epochs of their growth.
ioi. and in early Gothic.
decorations are pre-eminently geometric in construction.
to describe the coarse
and humorous carvings of heads. &c. and the figures ending in foliage. met with
Pompeian and other
or sunk work by modelling. or "geometrical arrangement.
finials. which gradually overspread all buildings. diamond. bosses.)
were originally called grotesque. in opposition to
. In another sense giving the proper treatment and character to ornament. also the bounding lines for ornament constructed on a
basis of geometry.
See Figs. they
Vatican. 102. such as winged dragons. segmental.
used to decorate the built grottoes of the late Renaissance. in
flowing and crossing each other
an ornament composed of parallel curved lines .
See also Figs. that serve to decorate the ends of dripstone mouldings.
. square. grinning monsters. or elliptical in section . met with in the volutes of Greek Corinthian
the base of the tripod on the choragic monument Renaissance sculpture. 122. 131. snare-work
. the hexagon.
Guilloche. the circle.
Geometric. 54Fluted. the bursting of the are to be
bud from a capsule. a term sometimes applied to grotesque creations. octagon.
(See Figs. and other polygons.
capitals. these forms may best be illustrated
." the setting out of all good ornament . 122 and 128. 75 and 76. . a quality derived
from the appearance of plants of free the freedom and elasticity found in natural forms when converted into ornament give a look of flexibility. to the hybrid animals. The word is also used to denote the quaint class of Gothic sculptured creations
(Fig. or the clasp of a tendril. gargoyles.. 134.
interfering with the use of the object ornamented.
Fitness. like those on some of the shafts of Greek and Roman
columns. the twist of the stem of creeping plants to get light to the flowers.
Fig. the triangle.
which produce a look of
inflexibility. for example. and were imitated The word is mainly used
the hop. ropes. 133.
ornament composed of bands. 163. woven work. Mnemonic. quaint. rushes.
See page 21. in opposition to
realistic. the colour of the ground on either
it being different. Seepage 130.
Independent ornaments. another. C. Things that are beautiful.
and small columns. panelling without sufficient variety in
osiers. so as to spoil the appearance.
vertical or horizontal patterns are divided Interchange by a vertical or horizontal axis. 38. 37. Figs. mostly applied to Egyptian picture and
See Fig. symbolic writing. and curved tiles on roofs. that resemble
the spots and eyes on butterflies' wings. 173.
Intersection. that which is improperly applied. 22.GLOSSARY
by the bending of ropes round circular pins so as to cross one See Figs.
modelling. medallions. among examples of
A. and 40.
Inappropriate ornament. shields. or curious.
. as seen in fir-cones.
roof. 162. sameness of tone
in excessive repetition
very undesirable feature in ornament : patterns within diapers without contrasting elements mouldings coming together whose widths and profiles are nearly equal .
work may be mentioned braided. 174.
&c. 162. are examples of imbrication. mostly
found in the ornament of savage
tribes. being of the colour of the opposite ground. the ornament on each side of the axis See Figs."
woven together. also Fig. that may be attached to a wall or surface.. the points at
lines or other
forms cut one another.
carved ornament of nearly equal relief
in short. is false.
Hieroglyphic^ sacred carving. those forms that are used for decoration. ornament in which written
signs or other elements are used purpose of aiding the memory. ribbons. used by some writers as equivalent to conventional.
of the Chili pine
a peculiar instance of horizontal im-
something like that of a
. &c. or on the feathers of birds . or the markings on the skins of reptiles and quadrupeds. torus mouldings. Figs.
Celtic. or interfere with the use of an object . B. 26.
See page 21. overlapping scale-like ornaments . or crossing at intervals. as seen in Byzantine.
Interlacing. 23. as festoons. trophies. and Saracenic ornament . or redundant. Naturalistic.
or colour of
any lack of ornament
produces monotony. and is See spaces on Italian majolica.
the inclosed spaces
with other subjects of smaller or larger scale. see pages 40 43. the divergence from a point of straight or curved lines.
absence of spottiness.
. and projection of solids in flowing ornament.204
Network. 103. from its greater scapes.
See Figs. and Figs. and Figs. to the whole.
. regular disposition a pleasing sequence in the arrangement of opposed forms.
pilasters. and the relation between the spaces occupied by the ornament and its ground. 76A and 763. Order is of such vital importance in a design that
. and in some bad paper-hangings.
See page 45. and other decorative units sprinkled on a ground.
44. of the length. producing the reverse effect of "fluting" . 50. often made to a much larger scale in Greek coins and engraved gems.
is composed of different organic forms. Equality in scale need not be used when parts are cut off from each other by inclosing mouldings. 80. rectilinear or otherwise.
ornament can scarcely have any existence without
. apparent movement may be seen in some flamboyant tracery and also the Saracenic work. 85. 49. as a keep their natural proportion to each other.
with the Japanese. being sculptured to represent a bundle of reeds tied together.
Repetition. the relative proportion of the different parts of a decorative composition to each other. flowers. Radiating ornament is improved by the point being below the straight
or curved line from which the radiation starts.
83. 102. Attributes are. the harmonic spacing of lines and surfaces the ratio between succeeding units width. they should. &c. and 105. or without apparent altera" tion .
Radiation. 63.. this . and to the thing ornamented. as opposed to checkers.
Repose. and 51. "powdering" is a favourite method of decoration
and 146. leaves. or inscriptions importance. 3. as in isolated panels. and was with the Medisevals. spandrels. See Figs. covering a surface.
. a style of decoration in which forms are applied without alteration from natural forms or objects. it is opposed to the conventional.
If a design
rule. sprays. outline. Proportion. a succession of the same decorative unit." and is rarely found in
the best periods of good historic styles.
the absence of apparent movement in ornament .
medallions. as with landthe frieze of a room. however. convex forms applied to a flat or curved surface. and 32. some of the columns in Egyptian architecture are reeded. &c. are squares set lozengewise or forming diamonds but the word is commonly applied to any figures in See Fig.
Reeded. heads. may have its decoration larger in scale than the panels
41. Also Figs. each spiral coiling the reverse way.
Spacing. the convex side being outwards. the human figure should not exceed its natural size.
of paper or parchment. the planning of a scheme of decoration . borders. &c.
in climbing plants this appearance can only be given by their attachment to a central upright or to the vertical sides of the frame . mostly means the latter
ineffective. 88 and 89. if the flowers or leaves in ornament are made gigantic. panels. as the soffit of a beam. an architectural term applied to the under side of any fixed portion.
usually applied to two spirals.
harmonious variety in good effect.
Where many curved
the chief factor of stability in ornament. in ornament the word spiral. D. as the bead and reel in bead-mouldings. 178. 65. See pages 42.
Soffit. 24. 42.
See pages 26. or cone. except in rare instances. See page lines are used in the decoration of long
panels. the first constructive lines or marking-out of the ornament . the
rooms. and also a sequence of forms similar
in shape but in
plants. the sequence of the same text in Saracenic work. an architrave. and may want to be much smaller. but the word is often applied to ornament
Series. 62. and 68.
. also the plan of one twisted round a cone .
in the decoration of
increase or destroy hence.GLOSSARY
of the door or shutters.circles or segments.
Stability. straight-lined forms must be introduced to counteract the effect of instability in the curved ones.
and should be guarded against
such widths and distances
desirable for getting a
form. they destroy the
scale of the
diameter or six
Scalloping or scolloping. or
a vault. Equality of division in decoration is. stiles and rails.
this precaution is equally important in the use of plants .
forming a volute
or of pieces of furniture. Spiral. 123 and 128. usually
composed of a meander with
the line of construction in
See Figs. the skeleton lines of a
design. &c. forming an edge with semi. the elevation of a wire continuously twisted round a cylinder. each attached to the opposite ends of a curved stem.
in the general
appearance of a design
. when used as a substantive.
(as in the Ionic capital)
and the outline of the wave ornament
univalve shells. the marking of widths in mouldings.
unit in ornament. an arch.
though it may be known that leaves four long actually exist. 43. and 68 71. with leaves getting smaller
an increasing or decreasing order. as branches of from bottom to top.
the sequence of several dissimilar forms at regular intervals. C. of
floors. in most cases. a cornice. See Figs.
whether it be architecture. the great thing to remember the nature. opportunities. In modern English it means a sign. and shape of the object to be decorated.
sometimes of a well-ordered kind. the judicious use of different colours and gold preventing confusion in the pattern . either geometric or floral or a broad. or commonplace. because the genius. This word has nearly the same meaning as powdering.
Bygone styles are useful for study. such as a large flowing pattern on a ground covered with a smaller pattern. three. but occasionally in that of the Renaissance artists." the only difference being that the units of form in such decoration have
a geometrical basis and are mostly equidistant.
104. but can never be re-created. is applied to a composition in which those qualities are expressed. or painting.
. and also a signet. realistic. and naturalistic.
. knowledge. the ground occupying much larger space than the ornament. 89. See Fig. classify them under the head of conventional
It is also (sometimes called idealistic).
regular gradation from the most important feature See the central panel of ceiling.
meant handwriting. and surroundings of any later period are unlikely to be the same. which conveys the
Sometimes it elegance. and may be copied or paraphrased. In ornamental art it is mostly used to express some beautiful thing that by knowledge or association brings to the mind some power or
to the least important. in contradistinction to the ill-drawn. In historic styles it means the expression of the taste and skill of the people who produced the work of art.2o6
is especially the case in pilasters which are architectural features of support . 80. aesthetic
narrow bands. and for the same reason the heavier forms should be kept at the bottom and the lighter ones at the top.
Stripe^ usually applied in Suitability. we often find two. emblem.
Subordination. for it is evident that what would be a good ornament for one object or position might be bad
for another. surface. and sometimes four different designs superimposed on each other. used to express good drawing or modelling. ribbon-like
mostly seen in the decoration of the In the Saracens. flabby. Fig. grace. wall-patterns of the Alhambra.
meant a token or a ticket among the Greeks by meant the same. and to design the ornament accordingly. or vigour of the best natural forms.
Superimposed or superposed^ an ornament which is laid on the surface of another.
on a pattern formed of narrow and
Spotting. 101. or figurative representation. sculpture.
the branches and curves should flow out of the central stem. whether the Apocalyptic calf is a symbol. an emblem. 127 and 130.
Unit. but uniformity with slight variety gives the most dignity.
The Greek temples had apparently absolute. perfect accord in all the parts of a design.
Symmetry. uniform columns placed at uniform distances. equality of form and mass on either side of a central absolute sameness in the two sides of a piece of ornament. and Figs." i.
without symmetry. See p. such as the volute. and monotony was avoided by delicate variations in the size and spacing of the columns. for instance. the meeting of curves at their tangential points. In Christian ornament the fish and lamb are mostly symbols of the
Saviour. the absence of similarity . being of one shape figures .
gives interest to ornament. -it is one of the main causes of grandeur and dignity. but if
. from two things that are not absolutely alike. or an
allegorical representation of St.
symbols of the divinity to which they belong the bow of Diana. &c. the thyrsus of Bacchus (Fig.GLOSSARY
with religion. 167). The
principal constructive lines in foliated ornament
should illustrate " tangential junction.
Tangential Junction. so by itself it
will scarcely render a design pleasing. and the trident of Neptune. a word embracing an infinity of differences.
See the word
Variety. 25 and
the square and circle are uniform Uniformity.
Un symmetrical. an
emblem. e. to two The judicious use of variety things that are absolutely unlike.
Unity. or an allegorical representation . Unity is often a characteristic of designs that are very monotonous. It is sometimes difficult to determine when anything should be called a symbol. Figs. results in monotony. 45.
Luke. the smallest or simplest complete expression of ornament in any scheme of decoration.
. so that they flow into one another without making an angle.
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