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MURUS.

MURUS.

770

Etruria, and in Central Italy, especially in the valleys at the foot of the Apennines on their western side, we find numerous remains of walls, which are alike, inasmuch as they are composed of immense blocks of stones put together without cement of any kind, but which differ from one another in the mode of their construction. Three principal species can be clearly distinguished : — 1. That in which the masses of stone are of ir­regular shape and are put together without any attempt to fit them into one another, the inter­stices being loosely filled in with smaller stones ; as in the walls of the citadel of Tiryns, a portion of which is shown in the following engraving: —

Another specimen of the buildings at Tiryns, of much more regular construction, may be seen at p. 125.

2. In other cases we find the blocks still of ir­regular polygonal shapes, but of a construction which shows a considerable advance upon the former. The stones are no longer unhewn (apyol Aifloi), but their sides are sufficiently smoothed to make each fit accurately into the angles between the others, and their faces are cut so as to give the whole wall a tolerably smooth surface. Examples of this sort of work are very common in Etruria. The engraving is taken from the walls of Larissa in Argolis.

3. In the third species, the blocks are laid in horizontal courses, more or less regular (sometimes indeed so irregular^ thatriorie of the horizontal joints are continuous), and with vertical joints either perpendicular or oblique, and with all the joints more or less accurately fitted. The walls of My­cenae present one of the ruder examples of this sort of structure ; and the following engraving of the " Lion Gate,'1 of that fortress (so called from the rudely sculptured figures of lions) shovvs also the manner in which the gates of these three spe­cies of walls were built, by supporting an immense block of stone, for the lintel, upon two others, for jambs, the latter inclining inwards, so as to give more space than if they were upright. A very large number of interesting examples of these con-

structions will be found engraved in some of the works presently referred to. We have only space for these three characteristic specimens, one of each class. Neither is it here possible, or at all necessary, to discuss the opinions of ancient writers, most of whom were content with the popular legend which assigned these works to the Cyclopes, nor the theories of modern scholars and antiquarians, who (with some of the ancients) have generally referred them to the Pelasgians. The principal conclusions to which Mr. Bunbury has come, from a thorough examination of the whole subject, may be safely regarded as correct: namely, that while in such works as the walls of Tiryns we have undoubt­edly the earliest examples of mural architecture, it is quite a fallacy to lay clown the general prin­ciple, that the unhewn, the polygonal, the more irregular and the more regular rectangular con­structions, always indicate successive steps in the progress of the art; and that it is also erroneous to assign these works to any one people or to any one period ; that, while such massive structures would of course be built by people comparatively ignorant of the art of stone-cutting or of the tools proper for it, they might be and were also erected in later times simply on account of their adaptation to their purpose, and from the motive of saving unnecessary labour ; and that the difference between the poly­gonal and rectangular structures is generally to be ascribed not to a difference in the skill of the workmen, but to the different physical characters of the materials they employed, — the one sort of structure being usually of a species of limestone, which easily splits into polygonal blocks, and the other a sandstone, the natural cleavage of which is horizontal. (Bunbury, Cydopaean Remains in Central Italy, in the Classical Museum, 1845, vol. ii. pp.147, &c. ; Muller, Arch'dol. d. Kunst, §§45, 166, and the works there quoted ; Stieglitz, ArchaoL d. Baukunst) vol. i. pp. 95—98 ; Hirt, Gescfi. d. Bau~ kunst, vol. i. pp. 195, &c., and plate vii. from which the foregoing cuts are taken ; Atlas zu Kugler^s Kunstgescliiclite, Pt. ii. PI. 1 ; Gottling in th. ' Rliein. Mus. 1843, vol. iv. pp. 321, 480, and in the Archaologische Zeitung, No. 26 ; Pompeii, vol. i. c. 4, with several woodcuts of walls ; Abeken, Mittelitalien t)or den Zeiten romischer Herrscliaft, a most important work, with numerous engravings of walls).

The examples of the foregoing class lead us gradually to the regular mode of construction which prevailed in Greece after the time of the Persian Wars, and which had been adopted in the walls of temples much earlier. In the long walls of

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