Greeks, their forerunners in every walk of genius,
the Italians are endowed with quick perception, nice
discernment, rich invention. Of exquisite sensibility
to every kind and form of beauty, it is equally theirs
to recognize and to exhibit excellence, by taste and
The business of the following pages is confined to
their Archite&s, and, among those, chiessy to the few
who have written judiciously on the Art, as well as
prabtised it with allowed success. Their varieties in
the dobtrine of the Orders have been shewn, in pa-
rallel, by different Professors, as Mess. * Chambray,
Blondel, Perrault in French; Count Alexander Pom-
pei in Italian, &c j and different schemes have been
proposed for fixing, from comparison of authorities,
the proportion of the entire orders and their parts;
none of which have been generally received. The
distributions of Vignola and Palladio have been molt
followed in practicej and those of the latter with
preference in this country.
But, before we proceed to these Restorers of clas-
sical Architecture, we muss not fail to pay our first
respebts to an Antient/ who has left us the only
Treatise on that art, of so early date, now extant.
No Artist, or Scholar, can be ignorant that Vitru-
vius is here meant j as there is no subsequent Wri-
ter, who has not acknowledged the large assistance
all have derived from him, in what relates to the
history and practice os Greek and Roman Architec-
ture. Most of the literature of the Art is contained
* Transsated by Mr. Evelyn.
d Vitruvius Pollio ssourished between 44 and 31 before Christ.