This section is from the book "Cyclopedia Of Architecture, Carpentry, And Building", by James C. et al. Also available from Amazon: Cyclopedia Of Architecture, Carpentry And Building.
83. The Corinthian capital (Plate XVII) is in form similar to a cylindrical vase covered by an abacus with hollowed sides and with corners cut at an angle of forty-five degrees, in plan with the sides of the square containing the abacus. Against this vase or "bell" are placed two rows of leaves whose heads are curved. The first row, which is applied directly above the astragal of the shaft, is composed of eight leaves; these are called the small leaves. From the intervals between these small leaves arise the stems of the second row of leaves which are larger. Between these large leaves and just over the centers of the small ones, eight stems arise, from which develop eight other leaves which, divided into two parts, recurve above the large leaves at the corners of the abacus and at the center of each of its faces. These leaves, which are very much distorted, are called caulicoli. From these caulicoli arise sixteen volutes of which eight large ones unroll in pairs, back to back, under the corners of the abacus, and eight small ones, also in pairs extend towards the centers of the four sides of the abacus. Among the small volutes next to the bell is placed an ornament which is called the floweret, and above this, against the mouldings of the abacus, is a rosette.
84. The small leaf, Plate XVI, is placed on a vertical axis against the vase in such a manner that the base rests on the astragal and its face corresponds to the face of the shaft, so that, the leaves being one part thick at the bottom, the vase of the capital must be two parts smaller than the column at the neck.
The sweep of the leaf has a projection of six from the base and forms a delicately curved profile the shape of which may easily be determined from the plate. The squares represent a unit of two parts in all cases.
The developed width of the leaf is equal to its height, thirteen parts. It is represented in front elevation, half developed to its full height, and half in its recurved position as it is placed on the capital. The developed half shows the under part of the curved top; it may be seen that a perpendicular axis divides the leaf into two perfectly symmetrical halves, each halt being divided into four divisions which themselves are sub-divided-the topmost and lowest ones into four pointed lobes, the two others into five.
Notice that in order to present the ordinary profile above the astragal, the leaf preserves its entire mass in the lower part for a small distance above the base.
85. The large leaf, (Plate XV) which grows from above the astragal, in the small space between two of the smaller leaves, (see Plate XVII) projects nine parts beyond the upper diameter of the shaft. Its details are in almost every particular similar to those of the small leaf.
86. The stems of the caulicoli (Plate XVI) are channeled batons or staves each crowned by a calix from which the distorted leaf or caulicolus springs (Plates XV and XVI.)
87. It may be noticed that in the direct elevation (Plate XVI) the enrollments of the volute are arranged in the form of a corkscrew, and the section shows the manner in which their faces are hollowed out. The floweret (Plate XV) is seen only in direct ele-vation in the general plate, being attached to the vase on the axis of each space between the smaller volutes. It is shown separately on this plate, with a horizontal section.
88. This same plate shows the detail of a rosette having six divisions, in the center of which is found a slug whose tail is turned upward.
PLATE XV. (A reproduction at small size of Portfolio Plate XV.)
(A reproduction at small size of Portfolio Plate XVI.)
89. The upper part of the Corinthian capital is a drum in the form of a bell whose upper edge is decorated with a curved moulding called the lip. The bell is forty parts in height; its lower diameter (directly above the astragal of the column) is thirty-four, -two parts less than the neck of the column,-and its upper diameter at the edge of the lip is forty-four. This difference of diameter forms a section or outline starting at the astragal and extending in a delicate curve up to the edge of the lip.
It is against this vase or bell that all the ornaments that have been detailed are attached. In order to draw each one in its own place in the general elevation-after having made the section, or profile, of the bell, with the astragal of the shaft-mark on a vertical line the height of the small leaf, thirteen parts; above this the height of the large leaf, twelve; then the distance above the large leaves up to the volute, six; next mark the height of the turn-over of the small and the large leaves, four; and the turnover of the caulicoli, three and five-tenths. Through all these different points draw horizontal lines across the width of the bell. All the projections are figured from verticals erected from the face of the column above the astragal. The small leaf projects six, the large one nine, the leaf of the caulicolus fifteen and five-tenths, and the volute seventeen.
90. In order to draw the elevation of the Corinthian capital it is necessary to consider first its outline as a section, and to lay out carefully, in plan, the arrangement of its leaf ornaments, as shown in Plate XVII. By means of this section and plan, the elevation may be exactly determined, after the individual parts, with their arrangement, are thoroughly understood.
91. The capital of the pilaster is composed of the same elements as that of the column; but as the plan of the pilaster is square the forms are slightly different; thus the vase, which is square at its base above the astragal, has convex faces; each face of the vase has two small leaves square in plan, and centering on perpendiculars at a distance of nine from the center line. Larger leaves are placed in the center of each face and at each angle. The abacus and other details are exactly similar to those of the capital of the column.