Spring 2022 Course Highlight | Ancient Architectural Practice

This spring, Professor Nick Cahill will be teaching the seminar AH 505/805 “Ancient Architectural Practice,” T 4:00–6:30pm, humanities breadth and L&S credit. When visiting an ancient site for the first or even the thousandth time, most people’s immediate response is, “how could people way back then have built such an amazing building? How did they lift those stones, how did they cut them so perfectly? From the pyramids of Egypt to temples of ancient Greece to great Roman buildings such as the Pantheon, ancient builders proved to be masters at design, engineering, and construction, often achieving levels of workmanship that are all but unobtainable today. This seminar will look at processes of design, engineering, construction, and labor in ancient cultures from Egypt and Mesopotamia to Greece and Rome. We will consider the limitations of available materials and working technologies, processes of quarrying, moving, and lifting stones and other building materials, techniques of working stone, brick, and wood. We will consider processes of design and execution, the place of architects and builders in the ancient world, the organization of labor, and questions of funding. Enroll here.