Ancient Architecture and Mathematics: Methodology and the Doric Temple

Mark Wilson Jones

Research output: Chapter or section in a book/report/conference proceedingChapter or section


The interpretation of the design of ancient buildings is a problematic subject area, compromised by many publications of a speculative nature which are supported insufficiently by rigorous and objectively testable data. The situation was at its worst in the first half of the 20th century, and while modern journals now expect higher standards of rigour, there is still room for progress if proportional studies are to enjoy full scholarly credibility. Over the preceding twenty years the author has accumulated a substantial experience in the field of ancient architecture (both Greek and Roman), with a particular emphasis on proportional and design analysis. This article extracts out of this experience a methodology which will be of wider relevance to the mathematical analysis of the architecture of any chronological period. In particular seven criteria for evaluation are proposed, explained and illustrated by means of a variety of specific examples.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationNexus VI: Architecture and Mathematics
EditorsSylvie Duvernoy, Orietta Pedemonte
Place of PublicationTurin, Italy
PublisherKim Williams Books
Number of pages20
ISBN (Print)88-88479-14-7
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2006

Bibliographical note

Nexus 2006. 7-9 June 2006, Genoa, Italy


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