« AnteriorContinuar »
Houses are built to live in, and not to look! on; therefore let use be preferred before uniformity, except where both may be had. Leave the goodly fabrics of houses, for beauty only, to the enchanted palaces of the poets, who build them with small cost. He, that builds a fair house upon an ill seat, commit-teth himself to prison ; neither do I reckon it an ill seat only where the air is unwholesome, but likewise where the air is unequal; as you shall see many fine seats set upon a knap of ground, environed with higher hills round about it, whereby the heat of the sun is pent. in, and the wind gathereth as in troughs ; so as you shall have, and that suddenly, as great diversity of heat and cold as if you dwelt in: several placeş. Neither is it ill air only that maketh an ill seat; but ill ways, ill markets; and, if you will consult with Momus, ill neighbours.' I speak not of many more ; want of water, want of wood, shade, and shelter, want of fruitfulness, and mixture of grounds of se
veral natures ; want of prospect, want of level grounds, want of places at some near distance for sports of hunting, hawking, and races; too near the sea, too remote; having the commodity of navigable rivers, or the discommodity of their overflowing ; too far off from great cities, which
hinder business; or too near them, which lurcheth all provisions, and maketh every thing dear; where a man hath a great living laid together, and where he is scanted; all which, as it is impossible perhaps to find together, so it is good to know them, and think of them, that a man may take as many as he can ; and, if he have several dwellings, that he sort them so, that what he wanteth in the one, he may find in the other. Lucullus answered Pompey well, who, when he saw his stately galleries and rooms so large and lightsome in one of his houses, said, “ Surely an ... excellent place for summer, but how do you « in winter ?” Lucullus answered, “Why do
you not think me as wise as some fools are,
that ever change their abode towards the * "6 winter?”
To pass from the seat to the house itself, we will do.as Cicero doth in the orator's art,
who writes books, De Oratore, and a book he entitles Orator ; whereof the former delivers the precepts of the art, and the latter the perfection. We will therefore describe a princely palace, making a brief model thereof: for it is strange to see, now in Europe, such huge buildings as the Vatican and Escurial and some others be, and yet scarce a very fair room in them.
First, therefore, I say you cannot have a perfect palace, except you have two several sides; a side for the banquet, as is spoken of in the book of Esther, and a side for the household ; the one for feasts and triumphs, and the other for dwelling. I understand both these sides to be not only returns, but parts of the front; and to be uniform without, though severally partitioned within ; and to be on both sides of a great and stately tower in the midst of the front, that, as it were, joineth them together on either hand. I would have, on the side of the banquet in front, one only goodly room above stairs, of some forty foot high; and under it a room for a dressing or preparing place, at times of triumphs. On the other side, which is the household side, I wish it di
vided at the first into a hall and a chapel, (with a partition between,) both of good state and bigness; and those not to go all the length, but to have at the farther end a winter and a summer parlour, both fair; and under these
a fair and large cellar sunk under ground; and likewise some privy kitchens, with butteries and pantries, and the like. As for the tower, I would have it two stories, of eighteen foot high a piece above the two wings; and goodly leads upon the top, railed with statues interposed; and the same tower to be divided into rooms as shall be thought fit. The stairs likewise to the upper rooms, let them be upon a fair open newel, and finely railed in with images of wood cast into a brass colour
; and a very fair landing-place at the top. But this to be, if you do not point any of the lower rooms for a dining-place of servants; for, otherwise, you
shall have the servants dinner after your own : for the steam of it will come up as in a tunnel; and so much for the front: only I understand the height of the first stairs to be sixteen foot, which is the height of the lower room.
Beyond this front is there to be a fair court,
but three sides of it of a far lower building than the front; and in all the four corners of that court fair stair-cases, cast into turrets on the outside, and not within the row of build. ings themselves; but those towers are not to be of the height of the front, but rather proportionable to the lower building. Let the court not be paved, for that striketh up a great heat in summer, and much cold in winter : but only some side alleys with a cross, and the quarters to graze, being kept shorn, but not too near shorn. The row of return on the banquet side, let it be all stately galleries; in which galleries let there be three or five fine cupolas in the length of it, placed at equal distance, and fine coloured windows of several works : on the household side, chambers of presence and ordinary entertainments, with some bed-chambers; and let all three sides be a double house, without thorough lights on the sides, that you may have rooms from the sun, both for forenoon and afternoon. Cast it also, that you may have rooms both for summer and winter; shady for summer, and warm for winter. You shall have sometimes fair houses so full of glass that one cannot tell