BOOKS ON ARCHITECTURE
The second edition of Pietro Cataneo’s treatise was radically changed and enlarged. The first four books published in 1554 were updated: three chapters on the layout of an army encampment during the Roman period were added to the first book and twelve “Vitruvian” chapters on temple styles were added to the third book as well as an illustration of Bramante’s tempietto (pp. 72-73). Noticeable are four new books devoted successively to the architectural orders, to water resources and baths, to geometry and to perspective. In this configuration, the Architettura becomes a complete treatise, which strives to vie with the books of Alberti and Serlio. It inspired Andrea Palladio to make this comment of praise: “una opera di Architettura, con la quale ha non poco illustrato questa professione” (1570, I, 13, p. 15). Perhaps it was this comment which gave Roland Fréart de Chambray the idea of becoming interested in Cataneo in order to associate him with Daniele Barbaro in his Parallèle, however with no great enthusiasm: “And his companion Pierre Cataneo (whom I give to Barbaro only in order to keep an equal conformity in the way in which I draw the parangon of the modern authors) will only be a minor clerk in the retinue of that great prelate, although he could be equal to most of the others” (1650, p. 20). The Architettura is quoted in Louis Savot’s “bibliography” (L’architecture françoise..., 1624, p. 322), and in his notes for Savot’s book, published in 1685, François Blondel gives a divided judgment: “there is much to be learned in Cataneo’s Book, particularly in that which concerns solidity and in several fine comments he makes which are useful for the beauty of the arrangement of the buildings; nevertheless the rules he gives for his orders of architecture must not be followed at all, not being in good taste” (1685, p. 347).
Yves Pauwels (Centre d’études supérieures de la Renaissance, Tours) – 2012
E. Bassi, "Nota introduttiva", Pietro Cataneo, Giacomo Barozzi da Vignola. Trattati di architectura, V-2, Milan, Il Polifilo, 1985, pp. 165-178.
R. Binaghi, "Pietro Cataneo Architettore nostro diletto ad Orbetello...", G. Beltramini, A. Ghisetti Giavarina & P. Marini (ed.), Studi in onore di Renato Cevese, Vicenza, Centro Internazionale di Studi di Architettura Andrea Palladio, 2000, pp. 41-59.
F. P. Fiore, "Trattati e teorie d’architettura del primo Cinquecento", A. Bruschi (ed.), Il primo Cinquecento, Milan, Electa, 2002, pp. 517-519.
G. Nido, Pietro Cataneo trattatista d’architettura del Cinquecento. Saggio introduttivo per una lettura critica della sua opera, Raccolta Pisana di saggi e studi, 29, Florence, Marchi & Bertolli, 1968.
A. Secondo-Tessari, "In modo crucis: simbolismo religioso nel trattato sull’architettura di Pietro Cataneo", Storia della Città, 43, 1988, pp. 69-84.