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Tutte L'Opere D'Architettura, Et Prrospetiva, Di Sebastiano Serlio Bolognese, Dove si mettono in disegno tutte le maniere di edifici, e si trattano di quelle cose, che sono più necessarie a sapere gli Architetti. Con la aggiunta delle inventioni di cinquanta Porte ... Diviso in sette Libri. Con un' Indice copiosissimo ... & un breve Discorso sopra questa materia, raccolto Da M. Gio. Domenico Scamozzi Vicentino. Di nuovo ristampate, e corrette.

Sebastiano Serlio

RA Collection: Book

Record number




In Vinegia,: Presso gli Heredi di Francesco de' Franceschi., M DC.

Physical Description

[24], 20, 25-52, [1], 50-219, [1], 27, [1] f., [8], 243, [1] p.: illus. (some full-page); 235 mm. (Octavo).

General Note

Folios 21-24 are not present. The following folios and pages are misnumbered: Folios, 15 as 19, 90 as 105, 198 as 918, 203 as 205; Pages, 107 as 205, 125 as 225, 237-241 as 233-237.


[T.p., dedic.] - Sonnetto Dell'Eccellente Sig. Lodovico Roncone Sopra l'Indice, e Discorso ... da M. Giovan Domenico Scamozzi ... Di M. Marco Stecchini, Per L'Istessa Occasione - Indice Copiosissimo ... Di Messer Vicentio Scamozzi; Discorso Di M. Giovan Domenico Scamozzi Vicentino - [Text, lib. 1-7, with pl.].

Responsibility Note

This publication includes reprints of various dedications: Book I reprints that of the publisher, Francesco de' Franceschi, to Daniel Barbaro (1566); Book VII reprints that of Francesco de' Franceschi to Vincentio Scamozzi (1584); the general dedication is a reprint of that from Lodovico Roncone to Francesco de' Franceschi (1584).


National Gallery (Washington), Mark J. Millard Architectural, IV (2000), 128; Harvard University, Harvard College Library Department Of Printing And Graphic Arts Catalogue Of Books And Manuscripts Part II: Italian 16th Century Books, comp. R. Mortimer (1974), vol. II, no. 477, p.660-1; Johns Hopkins University, The Fowler Architectural Collection (1961), no. 334, p.267-8; P. Riccardi, Biblioteca matematica (1952), 2, 441. S. Frommel, Sebastiano Serlio (1998); S. Serlio, Sebastiano Serlio on architecture, tr. V. Hart and P. Hicks (1996). The context is described in M. Carpo, tr. S. Benson, Architecture in the Age of Printing (2001); A. Payne, The architectural treatise in the Italian Renaissance (1999); V. Hart and P.Hicks, ed., Paper palaces: the rise of the Renaissance architectural treatise (1998).

Summary Note

The seven books address: 1. 'primi principii della Geometria'; 2. 'Di Prospettiva'; 3. 'edifici Antichi di Roma, e molti d'Italia, e d'altre parti; 4. 'cinque ordini'; 5. 'Delli Tempii'; 6. 'cinquanta porte'; 7. 'molti nobili edificii ... e varii accidenti, che possono occorrere nello edificare'. The woodcuts show plans, sections, elevations and reconstructions of buildings. Originally appearing in the mid-16th century, Serlio's was the first published architectural treatise of the Renaissance to convey its content chiefly by visual means. Accessible to the theoretician and the practising builder, his illustrated vernacular writings quickly disseminated Renaissance ideas of architecture across western Europe. Their direct influence has been traced in 16th-century buildings in Poznan, Heidelberg, Antwerp - and in Britain, in the plan of Robert Smythson's Wollatton Hall (1580-1588). Serlio's pioneering exposition of the five orders and his investigation of the relationship between Vitruvian classicism and the judgment of the individual architect, as well as his emphasis on illustrative content and his combination of theory with practical application, were all carried further by Vignola, Palladio and Vicenzo Scamozzi. Although these overtook him in influence, examples of his ideas and illustrations continued to reappear - for example, in Evelyn's translation of Freart. Serlio's books were first published separately between 1537 and 1575; and in a combined edition in 1566 (books 1-6) and 1584 (books 1-7). The text of this edition of 1600 (though the type has been reset) follows closely the edition of 1584. The only differences are that the list of 'Errori' (leaf xxiv in 1584) has been replace by a 'Discorso' by G.D. Scamozzi (most of leaf xxiii and all of leaf xxiv); and the colophon and printer's device have been dropped from page [244] (the last page of Book VII). The illustrations are from the same blocks as those used in the 1584 and 1566 editions (which were reduced copies of those printed in the earlier folio editions); but the title page borders are used in a different sequence, and, for the first time, the title pages of Books IV and VI bear the titles 'Il Quarto Libro' and 'Il Sesto Libro' instead of 'Regole Generali' and 'Libro Estraordinario'. This edition reprints the general dedication and the dedication of Book 7 carrying the date 1584, and the dedication of Book 1 carrying the date 1566.


Acquired by 1802. Recorded in Catalogue Of The Library In The Royal Academy, London (1802).

Copy Note

There are manuscript annotations in ink in Italian on the versos of folios 102 and 145. Folios 51-53 are torn.

Binding Note

17th-century vellum; spine lettered in ink, 'Serlio's Architettura'.


Architecture - Architectural orders - Architecture, Italian - Italy - History - 16th century - Renaissance
Manuals - Plans - Elevations - Sections - Reconstructions - Pattern books - Italy - 16th century - 17th century
Pictorial works - Italy - 17th century