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Elements of the Italian Renaissance

Updated on September 10, 2012


In the Renaissance, each city competed with each other to outdo their rivals. Now they did not outdo in battle, though technically it could count as one. They battled in the arts to see which city held the most splendor in architecture. The results were astounding and still exist as a fantastic and awe inspiring vacation spot.


Doric order was still seen in Rome. Built in 1502, Bramante's Tempietto at Montorio shows a great example of this order. Still standing strong from it's historic creation.

The ionic order became even stronger. Adorned with fantastic Roman script, they stand as a symbol of power and wisdom.

Corinthian orders are often seen in Renaissance churches. They adorn the facades and interiors with stories and designs of history to remind the public about religious stories.

Grand Late Renaissance Colonnade

Glorious sweeping colonades were begun in 1656. It was common to see statues along balustraded rooftops. When walking below, it seems they are watching you and almost real. Many of these have Doric, Ionic, or Corinthian orders to hold the roofs of these colonnades. It brings to mind the power of the Vatican in the church who adored the Doric order above others. Often the colonnade curves around and embraces an oval piazza.


Renaissance architects and designers enjoyed showing off their styles through their creations. They showed their styles through buildings and inventions. However, fountains were the main focus of their prowess at hydraulic engineering. Fountains brought style and grace to the public that had not been as widely viewed before this time.

Symmetrical Plan

In the Renaissance, there was a special value of being symmetrical. Many of the churches or important buildings visited by the public were symmetrically whole. For this to be done, some of the designs are copied around the entire building. For example, the building to the right, Villa Capra in Vicenza, has the same design is at each entrance.

Superimposed Pediments

Sometimes Classical forms were placed with one on top of the other. The view was, and still is, magnificent. The building is filled with subtle designs of the Classical era, yet create a gorgeous appearance. Domes had strong curves to balance the building to give off an angular facade.

Rusticated Stonework

Because of the designs focused near the top of the building, near the base appeared rustic. Imagine walking down a road to look up to the beautiful designs and statues above. It is a reminder that we are in a different place than others that humbles the public. The powerful and rugged look also gives the individuals a feeling of strength, that they will survive and are part of something bigger.


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    • greeneryday profile image

      greeneryday 5 years ago from Some tropical country

      Great hub! I have always been fascinated by this renaissance subject matter. I also think Italy also renowned for their beautiful fountain sculptures.

    • jhamann profile image

      Jamie Lee Hamann 5 years ago from Reno NV

      I love anything Renaissance. Thank you for a great hub. Jamie