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  Lara Seidman04/14/11Art History Paper AssignmentThe Golden Ratio in Ancient ArchitectureMany great structures hae !een !uilt throughout the history o human ciili#ation$ !ut most pale in comparison to the !eauty and grandeur o the architectural and sculptural masterpieces o the Great Pyramids o Gi#a$ the Pantheon$ and the Parthenon on the Acropolis% Many aspects o these structures add to their importance% &or the Great Pyramids o Gi#a$ it is mainly their sheer si#e and impecca!le masonry% The largest o the three 'eighs appro(imately )%*) million tons and had an srcinal height o 4+1%4 eet 1 % The Pantheon 'as an ingenious  !lend o tradition and innoation% The entrance$ composed o 1, huge columns and a pediment$ is traditional% The Rotunda$ created through the use o concrete and the true arch$ 'as a reolutionary idea and remained the largest enclosed space or one thousand years% The Parthenon$ a temple on the Acropolis dedicated to the goddess Athena Parthenos$ is huge and  !eauti ul% -t represents the height o the Gree. classical period% hile the Great Pyramids$ the Pantheon and the Parthenon all appear astly di erent$ there is one main characteristic they all hae in common% This is the use o the Golden Ratio$ 'hich is mathematically determined to create the most aesthetically pleasing proportions% The &i!onacci Series is created !y adding the t'o preious terms to get the ne(t one 0$ 1$ 1$ $ )$ +$ 1$ 21$ 3% The Golden Ratio$ or phi 5 is e6ual to 1 7 8)/2 and can also !e determined !y diiding the n th  term o the &i!onacci Series !y the n91 term% &rom the Golden Ratio$ the Golden Rectangle can !e created$ 'hose side lengths are in the ratio o 5:1 see igure a% Another 'ay o determining i a rectangle is in the Golden Ratio is i the ratio o the 1 ;Pyramids o Gi#a%; Encyclopædia Britannica. Encyclopædia Britannica Online % <ncyclop=dia >ritannica$ 2011% e!% 1? Apr% 2011% @http://'''%!ritannica%com/<>chec.ed/topic/244*0/Pyramids9o 9Gi#a%1  Lara Seidman04/14/11Art History Paper Assignmentshorter side to the longer side is e6ual to the ratio o the longer side to the sum o the shorter and longer side S/L B L/S7L%An interesting characteristic o the Golden Rectangle is that i separated into a s6uare andanother rectangle$ the second rectangle 'ill !e another Golden Rectangle% This process can !e repeated in initely see igure !% >y e(amining the Parthenon oerseen !y Phidias it is easy tosee that it 'as created using many Golden Rectangles% >y creating an in inite pattern o s6uares and Golden Rectangles$ one could simply place it on top o a dra'ing o the Parthenon and match up the diisions see igure c% Cther mathematical approaches 'ere used in creating the Parthenon$ along 'ith the Golden Ratio% &or e(ample$ the columns 'ere !uilt in a ratio o +:1*$ or 1:2(71$ so there 'ould !e no center column !loc.ing the ie' in the ront 2 % <ntasis enlargement o columns in the center 'as also used to correct or the illusion o a concae column 'hen ie'ed rom a distance% The com!ination o all these mathematical calculations and illusions in the Parthenon has produced argua!ly one o the most !eauti ul and aesthetically  pleasing !uildings eer created !y man% Although the Parthenon may !e PhidiasD most 'ell .no'n design$ he also created AthenaParthenos$ the sculpture inside the Parthenon% Though she is no' destroyed$ the sculpture 'as estimated to !e an oer thirty9 ie oot9tall gold and iory sculpture% Li.e other sculptures created !y Phidias$ Athena ParthenosD !ody proportions 'ere in the Golden Ratio  % The Ancient <gyptian also used care ul mathematical calculations to create the Great Pyramids o Gi#a% - the triangular dimensions used to create the pyramid are e(amined$ it is 2 Eoanoic$ Radosla% ;The Golden Section in Gree. Art%; Milan Milanović's Personal Home Page % Ean% 200% e!% 1? Apr% 2011% @http://milan%milanoic%org/math/english/golden/golden4%html% 3 ;Phidias%; Encyclopædia Britannica. Encyclopædia Britannica Online % <ncyclop=dia >ritannica$ 2011% e!% 1? Apr% 2011% @http://'''%!ritannica%com/<>chec.ed/topic/4))*+2/Phidias%2  Lara Seidman04/14/11Art History Paper Assignmentnoticed that the ratio o !ase to height to hypotenuse is 1:8 5: 5 see igure d 4 % Although the Golden Ratio 'as not recorded until 00 >%F%< !y <uclid$ it easily can !e argued that the ancient<gyptians understood it thousands o years prior to the ancient Gree.s ) % &rom the enormous si#e to the use o phi$ the Great Pyramids o Gi#a !ecame one o the seen 'onders o the ancient 'orld% hile the Great Pyramids o Gi#a and the Parthenon 'ere !ased on the mathematics  !ehind the Golden Ratio$ the Pantheon ocused more on other proportions% Ho'eer the hori#ontal lines encircling the Rotunda are in the Golden Proportion see igure e$ creating a Golden Rectangle 'ith a s6uare !eneath it% The use o the Golden Ratio diided the !uilding intoaesthetically pleasing proportions that no dou!t add to itDs !eauty% There are many important components to all o these great historical !uildings and sculptures% Ho'eer$ none o them 'ould hae their !eauty and elegant proportions 'ithout the use o the Golden Ratio% The Golden Ratio ma.es a design as simple and understated as a triangular pyramid appear magni icent% -t also trans orms a large temple 'ith many columns anddecoratie sculptures into a sophisticated and aesthetically pleasing 'or. o art% -t is ascinating to reali#e that ancient ciili#ations not only understood$ !ut also implemented the Golden Ratio to achiee architectural eats o 'onder and !eauty that are still admired today% or.s o ArtGreat Pyramid: 4 >ritton$ Eill% ;Golden Section in Art and Architecture%; + Euly 2010% e!% 1? Apr% 2011% @http://!ritton%disted%camosun%!c%ca/goldslide/!goldslide%htm% 5 Mi#e$ ianne% ;A Guide to the Golden Ratio AIA Golden Section or Golden Mean or Artists%; EmptyEasel.com: Painting Tips, Artist evie!s, elling Art Online and More % 20 Ean% 200?% e!% 1? Apr% 2011% @http://emptyeasel%com/200?/01/20/a9guide9to9the9golden9ratio9a.a9golden9section9or9golden9mean9 or9artists/%  Lara Seidman04/14/11Art History Paper Assignment  T#e $reat Pyramido% $i&a % igital image% EplosiveM(M.com %e!% 1? Apr% 2011% @http://'''%e(plosiemlm%com/'p9content/uploads/2010/0+/topJtenJgreatJpyramid%pg% Parthenon: Parthenon% igitalimage%  T#e Part#enon:eligion, Art, and Politics %e!% 1? Apr% 2011%@http://'''%oneonta%edu/ aculty/ ar!eras/arth/arth200/politics/parthenon%html% 4
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