Architecture and Archaeology

vitruvius illustration of caryatids

Vitruvius. De architectura, 1521.


image of tower of the winds 

Stuart & Revett. The antiquities of Athens, 1762-1816.

Watkinson holdings in architecture and archaeology span five centuries.  Highlights include:

16th c. treatises:

  • early editions of  Vitruvius’ De architectura, including the first edition printed in the vernacular, Como, 1521
  • Serlio’s Tutte l’opere d’architettura, 1559
  • Vincenzo Scamozzi’s Discorsi sopra l’antichita` di Roma, 1582

18th- and 19th-century expeditions and plate books:

  • Stuart and Revett’s Antiquities of Athens, 1762-1816
  • Saint Non’s Voyage pittoresque … de Naples et de Sicile, 1781-1786
  • Description de l’Egypte, 1809-1827, commissioned by Napoleon I
  • Robert Wood’s The ruins of Palmyra, 1753
  • Piranesi’s complete works
  • Charles Garnier’s Le nouvel Opéra de Paris


Other highlights of the collection:

  • early illustrated works on Palladio
  • Humphry Repton’s Sketches and hints on landscape gardening, 1794
  • 19th century British and American architecture periodicals
  • extensive holdings by Gothic Revivalist A.W.N. Pugin

American architectural classics:

  • Abraham Swan’s The British architect, 1775, the first book on architecture printed in the Colonies 
  • Early builders' handbooks: works by Asher Benjamin, including The American builder’s companion, 1806, and Minard Lafever.
  • Architects' pattern & theory books: Samuel Sloan’s The model architect, many works by Andrew Jackson Downing
  • The J. Cleveland Cady Collection, a rare example of an extant 19th-century architect's library.

20th-century material relating to Meso-America.