TWOCONFLICTING IDEAS CONCERNING THE PANTHEON
ThePantheon is a building that is found in Rome. It is circular in shapeand has a portico made of granitic Corinthian columns. It wasconstructed about 2000 years ago. It has a great design that shows anelement of harmony and elegance. It is referred as the best wellpreserved Roman monument. The building has a giant dome with a holeat its top. This hole is referred to as the eye of the Pantheon. Someschools of thought believe that the building was built in the secondcentury, an issue that is associated with a great level ofcontention.
Thereis also a view that the features of the building are not encounteredin the modern standards although some others are of the view thatsuch designs do exist in the contemporary times. Recent studies haveshown that the pantheon has major cracks that pose a huge risk on itsrate of survival (Fazie et. al, 1977, 39). While some structuralengineers do agree with the assertions that the building has cracks,they are, however, adamant that it may not crack since it has a greatlevel of stability that has enabled the building to survive for along period. This goes without saying that the building was builtwithout saying that the building was built up without beingreinforced with steel that would enable it to have a resistancetowards tensile cracking.
Manyengineers view that the idea in which the builders of those periodsavoided the use of steel in reinforcing the building was quitedangerous and may not permit such kind of practice in the modernarchitectural practices.
TheRomans also indicate that the building has a magnificent feature inwhich the dome has a diameter of about 142.4 feet and is made mostlyof concrete. Some architects, however, have a view that the buildingwas not made entirely of concrete (Fazie et. al, 1977, 37). The wallof the building is also said to have many cavities, an issue thatsome individuals are against the assertion. They do believe thatgiven the kind of material that was used to make the building, it ishard for it to have so many cavities and therefore, there is just anelement of being deluded among several factions of people.
Thewall openings have an arrangement of bricks that are essential in thesupporting of the upper walls and openings (Fazie et. al, 1977, 41).The arch is made up of semi-circular bricks that can stand radiallyextending away from the concrete wall so as to enhance a high levelof stability for the building and as well, help in the providing adistinctive feature that can differentiate the building from othersthat are equal as ancient as the Pantheon.
Themany divergent views concerning the building arise from the variousviews that different architects hold as a result of what they sawafter visiting the building. Others have only seen the building fromoutside without being conversant with the internal features that maybe so different from the idea that one has concerning the building(Fazie et. al, 1977, 42). The building remains to be a greatmonumental feature in Rome and depicts the great ingenuity of theancient architects who set out to build structures that would lastfor long.
Inconclusion, as a personal point of view in the divergent issuesconcerning the Pantheon, the fact that the building has survived formany centuries is proof that it meet proper architectural standardseven if it lacks a reinforcement of steel. The topic of whether thebuilding was put up during the second century or 2000 years ago isalso of little or no importance, at least not in the field ofarchitecture since, regardless the alternative, it is still clearthat it is an ancient building. The Pantheon stands to be a greatsymbol of the Roman civilization and prowess, and more attentionneeds to be focused on viewing the building as an icon that modernarchitecture needs to embrace.
Fazie,M., Moffett, M., Wodehouse, L. Building Across Time. An IntroductionTo World Architecture, Fourth Edition. (Michigan Press 1977) 37-42
MacDonald,William Lloyd. ThePantheon: design, meaning, and progeny.Harvard University Press, 2002.
Ward-Perkins,John Bryan. Romanarchitecture.New York: HN Abrams, 1977.