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L'Idea Della Architettura Universale, Di Vincenzo Scamozzi Architetto Veneto Divisa in X. Libri. Parte Prima. (Seconda.)

Vincenzo Scamozzi

RA Collection: Book

Record number



Variant Title

Architettura Scamozzi


Venetiis.: An. MDCXV., Cum Gratia, Et Privil. Expensis Auctoris

Physical Description

2 Parts in 1 vol.; 332 mm. (Quarto, in sixes).

General Note

Part I: [16], 90, [7], 96-128, 125-193, [2], 194-218, [4], 219-352, [34] p. (included in the pagination are: engr. t.-pl. (incl. port.), 36 full-page woodcuts (3 dble.), 4 dble. engr. pl.). - Part II: [12], 172, [4], 173-232, 235-[269], [v], 271-370, [22] p. (included in the pagination are: engr. t.-pl. (incl. port.), 40 engr. pl. (1 dble.), 6 full-page woodcuts). This pagination for Part I includes the printer's extra leaf of correction (recto unpaginated, verso numbered 96) inserted before page 97. In Part I page 191 is misnumbered as 190, 202 as 102, 222 as 22, 270 as 280 and 331-333 as 31, 331, 32 (and in some copies page 121 is misnumbered as 127, and 124 as 126). In Part II page 21 is misnumbered as 20, 38 as 40, 45-48 as 33, 34, 33, 36, 95 as 98, 298 as 296 (and in some copies page 44 is misnumbered as 32, 109 as 97, 114-115 as 90-91, 120 as 108, 235 as 245, 267-269 as 277-279, 355 as 361, 362 as 360.)


Part I: [T.-pl., dedic.] - A Prudenti, E Benigni Lettori - Indice de' Capi, Che In Questa Prima Parte Si Contengono - [Text, bks. 1-3] - Indice Copiosissimo Delle Materie, Che Si Contengono Nella Prima Parte; [colophon]. - Part II: [T.-pl., dedic.] - Indice De' Capi, Che In Questa Seconda Parte Si Contengono - [Text, bks. 6-8] - Lo Stampatore A' Lettori; Registro - Indice Copiosissimo Delle Materie, Che Si Contengono Nella Seconda Parte; [colophon].

Responsibility Note

The two etched title plates are unsigned. All other engraved plates and most woodcuts are signed 'Vinc. Scamozzi Arch.' (or variants); the cut on page 246 is additionally signed by 'Tit. Vecc.' (i.e. Titian). The woodcut which appears on the title page of each Book is signed 'V.F.'; some woodcut tailpieces are signed 'A.R.'

The colophons of both parts give the imprint, 'Per Giorgio Valentino'.

Each book carries a dedication by Scamozzi: Part I (Book I) to Massimiliano, Arciduca d'Austria; Book II to Carlo Emanuele, Duca di Savoia; Book III to Massimiliano, Conte Palatino e Duca della Bavaria; Part II (Book VI) to Cosimo, Granduca di Toscana; Book VII to Francesco Maria II, Duca d'Urbino; Book VIII to the Accademia Olimpica of Vicenza.


Royal Institute of British Architects, British Architectural Library ... Early printed books, 4 (2001), no. 2917; National Gallery (Washington), Mark J. Millard Architectural, 4 (2000), 123; Avery's choice (1997), 54; Johns Hopkins University, The Fowler Architectural Collection (1961), no. 292, p.234-5.

F. Barbieri and G. Beltramini, Vincenzo Scamozzi 1548-1616 (2003); G. Loukomsky, 'Disegni dello Scamozzi a Londra', in Palladio, IV (1940), p.65-74.

Summary Note

The publication-date of 1615 is carried by both title-plates, both colophons and all title-pages. Two woodcuts carry the date 1602 (Pt. i, Bk. 3, pp. 248, 249), and one is dated 1614 (Pt. II, Bk. 8, p.314).

The second Part has its own title plate; and each Book, its own title page.

Scamozzi had earlier published an edition of Serlio and an edition of Discorsi sopra le antichità di Roma (1581). His own ideas on architecture are expressed in the present work - Bk. 1 on the science of architecture; 2. on city planning, including military architecture; 3. on national methods of construction and on houses (including galleries and libraries); 6. on columns; 7. on building materials; 8. on various topics. He explores the link between 'idea' (based on theory and empirical knowledge) and design (concrete formal solutions for various building types).

The illustrations show plans, elevations and some sections. They includes some of Scamozzi's designs for buildings now destroyed or altered, or never realised.

Shortly before the work was published Scamozzi was visited by Inigo Jones and the Earl of Arundel, who bought several of his drawings; and the direct influence of Scamozzi has been traced in the British Palladian movement and in specific buildings such as Lord Burlington's Chiswick House.


A facsimile was published in 1964 (Ridgewood USA, Gregg Press - reproducing the RIBA copy). A modern edition, prepared by W. Oechslin and F. Barbieri was published at Verona in 1997.


Recorded in RAA Library, Catalogue, 1802.

Copy Note

In this copy the printer's extra leaf of correction, though numbered '96' on the verso, has been inserted not before page 97 but after the first leaf of Book I. In Part II pages 113-4 are transposed with pages 115-6. The title plates of both Parts are inscribed in ink, 'B. Mariotta 1676'.

Binding Note

18th century mottled calf; rebacked, the spine gilt-tooled and lettered, 'Architettura Scamozzi 1615'.

Name as Subject


Architecture - Theory - Construction - City planning - Architecture, Italian - Italy - History - 16th century - 17th century - Renaissance
Treatises - Plans - Elevations - Sections - Italy - 17th century
Pictorial works - Italy - 17th century


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