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by .Lysias '(Be 'Caed. Eratostfi. pp. 12, 13 ; comp. Aristoph. Eccles. 961. Thesm. 482). But it does not follow that that was the usual custom at this period. On the contrary, we have the express testimony of several writers, and of Lysias himself among the rest, that the Gynaeconitis was on the same story with the Andronitis, and behind it (Lysias, c. Simon, p. 139 ; Demosth. c. Euerg. p. 1155; Xen. Oecon. ix. 5; Antiph. de Venif. p. 611) ; and even the tragic poets transfer to the heroic ages the practice of their own, and describe both sets of apartments as on the same floor. (Soph. Oed. Tyr. 1241—1262.)
The scanty notices of the domestic, or rather the palatial architecture of the early Greeks, which we find in Homer, are insufficient to give an accurate notion of the names, uses, and arrangement of the apartments ; besides which, an allowance must no doubt be made for poetical exaggeration. The various passages and words, in Homer, which throw any light upon the subject, are collected and discussed by Schneider (Epim. ad Xenopli. Mem. iii. 8. § 9), by Krause (in Pauly's Real-Encyclop. d. Class. Alterth. s. v. Damns}, and by Hirt, who gives a ground-plan of the Homeric house (Gesch-icJite der Baukunst, vol. i. pp. 208—216, and Plate VI. fig. 1). The general plan was not very different from that of the later houses. The chief points of difference appear to have been, the position of the women's apartments in the upper story, and the great court in front of the house, which was wanting at least in the ordinary town dwellings of later times.
We first gain precise information on the subject about the time of the Peloponnesian war ; and from the allusions made by Greek writers to the houses of this and the immediately subsequent periods, till the time of Alexander, we may conclude that their general arrangement corresponded with that described by Vitruvius (vi. 7, Schneider). In this description, however, there is one considerable difficulty, among others of less importance. Vitruvius seems to describe the Gynaeconitis as lying before the Andronitis, an arrangement alike inconsistent with the careful state of seclusion in which the Greek women were kept, and also with the allusions in the writers of the period, who, as above stated, almost uniformly refer to the two sets of apartments as being on the same floor, the Gynaeconitis behind the Andronitis. Becker (C'harikles, vol. i. pp. 184, 185) notices the different explanations which have been given of the inconsistency between the statements and the description of Vitruvius, the most plausible of which is that of Galiani, namely, that in the time of Vitruvius a slight change had taken place in the disposition of the apartments, by which the Andronitis and Gynaeconitis were placed side by side, each of them having its own front towards the street, and its own entrance. It is also very likely that Vitruvius to some extent misunderstood the descriptions given by his Greek authorities.
The front of the house towards the street was not large, as the apartments extended rather in the direction of its depth than of its width. In towns the houses were often built side by side, with party walls between. (Thucyd. ii. 3.) The exterior wall was plain, being composed generally of stone, brick, and timber (Xen. Mem. iii. 1. § 7; Demosth. Ilepi ^vvra^. p. 175), and often covered with stucco. (Plutarch. Comp. Arist.. et Cat. 4).
Plutarch speaks of Phocion's house as being ornamented with plates of iron. (Plut. Plioc. 18.)
The general character of the ordinary houses in towns was very plain, even at the time of the Peloponnesian war ; the Greeks preferring to expend their wealth on temples and other public buildings. The ease with which the Plataeans broke through the party walls of their houses, to communicate with one another, in the instance just quoted, shows how indifferently they were constructed ; and even at Athens, in the time of Pericles, foreigners were struck by the contrast between the splendour of the public buildings and the mean dwellings of the common people. (Thuc. ii. 14, 65 ; Dicaearch. Stat. Graec. p. 8.)
Xenophon (Mem. iii. 8. §§ 9, 10) represents Socrates as stating briefly the chief requisites of a good house : that it should be cool in summer and warm in winter, and that the apartments should furnish convenient abodes for the family, and safe receptacles for their property: for the former purpose, the chief apartments should face the south, and should be lofty., so as to receive the full rays of the sun in winter, and to be shaded by their projecting roofs in summer ; and that those facing the north should be.lower, for the sake of shelter. Paintings and elaborate decorations, he says, destroy more pleasures than they furnish.
The advance of luxury, after the time of Alexander the Great, caused a corresponding improvement in the dwelling-houses of the principal Greek cities, which had already begun to receive more attention, in proportion as the public buildings were neglected. (Demosth. in Aristocr. p. 689, Olyntli. iii. p. 36.) It is probably to the larger and more splendid houses of this period that the description of Vitruvius applies ; but there is no reason to suppose that the general arrangements of the previous period were much altered. The following description, therefore, which is derived from a comparison of Vitruvius with the allusions in the Greek writers, will serve for the probable arrangements (for further we cannot go) of the Greek house, at the time of the Peloponnesian war and onwards.
That there was no open space between the street and the house-door, like the Roman vesti-bulum, is plain from the law of Hippias, which laid a tax on house-doors opening outwards, because they encroached upon the street. (Aristot. Oecon. ii. 6, p. 1347. Bekk.) The irpoQvpov, which is sometimes mentioned (Herod, vi. 35), seems to be merely the space in front of the house. We learn, however, from the same law of Hippias, that houses sometimes stood back from the street, within enclosures of their own (irpotypdy/iLaTa or 5pu<£a-ktoj, Heracl. Pont. Polit. 1). In front of the house was generally an altar of Apollo Agyieus, or a rude obelisk emblematical of the god. Sometimes there was a laurel tree in the same position, and sometimes a terminal bust of the god Hermes. (Thucyd. vi. 27 ; Aristoph. Plut. 1153.)
A few steps (a*>a£a0,uoi) led up to the house-door, which generally bore some inscription, for the sake of a good omen, or as a charm, such as EfooSosKpdTijTi 'Ayadip Aafytoz/i. (Plutarch, Frag. ViL Crat.; Diog. Laert. vi. 50.) The form and fastenings of the door are described under janua. This door, as we have seen, sometimes opened outwards ; but the opposite- was the general rule, as is proved by the expressions used for opening,