Friday, November 05, 2010

Architectura Regia

Architectura Regia (Boars, lion + bear)

Architectura Regia (Bull)

Architectura Regia (Pegasus)

Architectura Regia (Lions + dragon)

Architectura Regia (America)

Architectura Regia (building)

Architectura Regia (building) a

Architectura Regia (building) b

Architectura Regia (Goats + lion)

Architectura Regia (Elephant)

Architectura Regia (Bear + camel)

Architectura Regia (stairs)

Architectura Regia (building) c

Architectura Regia (frontispiece - titlepage)

'Architectura Regia' is a 2-volume ink and ink wash manuscript in Latin produced in 1683 by Frederik Coenders van Helpen and available online at the Bavarian State Library in Munich.

All of the images above were spliced together, -- 'best fit' from varying magnifications -- cropped and (mostly) extensively background cleaned from single manuscript page images.

'Architectura Regia' is a treatise on the five classical orders of architecture : Ionic, Doric, Corinthian (Greek); Tuscan and Mixed (Roman) --

"Each style has its proper entablature, consisting of architrave, frieze and cornice." [W]
-- the dominating features seen in the images above. These are accompanied by heroic, mythological and even New World figures drawn within the arches of the architectural order sketches.

Van Helpen was an important government official from Groeningen in Holland who was well-travelled in Europe. From the scant information around online, it appears he was a cartographer and draughtsman by trade. As he died in 1618(?), this 1683 manuscript is presumably a copy or expansion of van Helpen's original work. (I remain confused about this {addit: see comments below}, as I also am about whether the online manuscript is actually a combination of both treatises or simply the first volume.). The manuscript is dedicated to Louis XIV, the Sun King, as seen in that final image above.

Manuscript catalogue pages: One [T] & Two [T]. {note: the majority of illustrations are found in the last 100 of the 500 web pages of manuscript images}

Previously in general: Architecture from the delicious bookmarks for BibliOdyssey, where classifying tags and post summaries can be found for all 1000+ entries on this site.


Nancy Mattoon said...

Such an amazing collection of architecture and animalia. Did draftsmen centuries ago have superior imaginations, or were they on major halucinogens? Either way, great stuff.

Harry Perton said...

There were more Frederiks Coenders van helpen...

peacay said...

More than one?? Yes, that would make sense although it's really hard to discern that online without Dutch as a first or strong 2nd language. English-Dutch web translation remains very sketchy IMO.

Nancy, I wonder about the artistic 'expansion', let's call it. My first thought is that it might function to embellish a portfolio so that the artist/author can impress potential clients. And thankful we are for it, whether by plan or brain bubble!

Kristiina said...

such is the stuff that dreams are made of ;p

Harry Perton said...

This Frederik Coenders van Helpen was born in 1631, of Groningen gentry. His father was a diplomat and in his youth Frederik lived for years in France, where he became an enormous francophile. Though he was lord of some villages and also judge in the superior court of the province of Groningen, he used to stay more in France, than in his fatherland. In 1690 he lost his job as a judge, because his fellow-regents suspected him of espionage. Where exactly he stayed since then is unknown and we don't have a date of his death.
And and especially the first link:

peacay said...

Thanks very much nieuwgierig aagje!

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