| Alberti, Leone Battista Architecture 1755, tr. Leoni, James |
was a large semicircular Area verging to the
South, in which several Rows of Seats were
raised like those in the Theatre, and the Wall
was raised very high on that Side to keep off
the south Sun.
All this open Space quite
round the whole Thermæ was enclosed, like a
Castle, with a continued Wall, and in this out
ward Wall were several handsome Rooms,
either quadrangular or semicircular, which
looked towards the Thermæ itself.
Rooms the Citizens at Morning or Evening, or
any Hour they liked best, enjoyed either Sun
Besides all these, and especially to
wards the North, behind the inclosing Wall
were open Piazzas, of moderate Height, longer
than broad, and drawn upon a curve Plat
These Piazzas were surrounded by cir
cular Porticoes, with a close Wall at their
Back, so that very little Sky was to be seen in
these Piazzas, and between these Porticoes and
the main Inclosure was a very good Refuge
from the Heat in Summer, because by means
of the Narrowness of the Piazza itself, and the
Height of the main Wall, the Sun, even in the
Summer Solstice could hardly strike in upon it.
In the Angles of the main Inclosure were Ves
tibules and little Temples in which the Ma
trons, having cleansed and purified themselves,
offered Oblations to their Gods.
This is a
brief Account of the several Members and Parts
of the ancient Thermæ or Baths, and the De
signs of the several Members were taken either
from the Structures which we have already de
scribed, or from those which we are still to
treat of, according as they had the greatest Re
lation either to publick or to private Edifices;
and the Platform of most of the ancient
Edifices of this Sort contained above ten thou
sand Foot square.
The End of Book VIII.