Author(s) Ryff, Walther Hermann
Der furnembsten notwendigsten der gantzen Architectur... bericht...
Imprint Nuremberg, J. Petreius, 1547
Localisation Paris, Ensba, Masson 1862
Subject Architecture, Geometry, Perspective, Proportions
Transcribed version of the text


     This “very distinguished and very useful recounting of all of architecture” published in Nuremberg by Johann Petreius is a compilation of theoretical texts (Alberti, Nicolas de Cues, Reinhard zu Solms, Dürer...) repeated or translated by Walter Ryff which have less to do with architecture than with surrounding disciplines: geometry, perspective, fortification and ballistics. The illustrations mainly reproduce engravings from Cesare Cesariano’s Vitruvius (1521), from Sebastiano Serlio’s Books I-II on geometry and perspective (1545), from the Quesiti et inventioni diverse by Niccolò Tartaglia (1546) and from the Liber de geometria practica by Oronce Fine (published in Germany in 1543 and again in 1544). Ryff’s idea was to complete the areas that the De architectura didn’t deal with or took up briefly; thus he added to Vitruvius’s teachings those of his contemporaries who were the most capable of bringing the antique treatise up to date.

Yves Pauwels (Centre d’études supérieures de la Renaissance, Tours) – 2014


Critical bibliography

I. Dann, “Walther Ryff”, H. Günther (ed.), Deutsche Architekturtheorie zwischen Gothik und Renaissance, Darmstadt, Wissenschaftliche Buchgesellschaft, 1988, pp. 79-88.

H. Günther, “Les ouvrages d’architecture publiés par Walther Hermann Ryff, à Nuremberg en 1547 et 1548”, S. Deswarte-Rosa (ed.), Sebastiano Serlio à Lyon. Architecture et imprimerie, Lyon, Mémoire Active, 2004, pp. 501-503.

J. Jachmann, Die Architekturbücher des Walter Hermann Ryff : Vitruvrezeption im Kontext mathematischer Wissenschaften, Stuttgart, Ibidem-Verlag, 2006.

H. Röttingen, Die Holzschnitte zur Architektur und zum Vitruvius Teutsch des Walther Rivius, Strasbourg, Heitz, 1914, pp. 21-22.