1902 Encyclopedia > Architecture > Roman Basilicas

(Part 80)

Roman Basilicas

We have left these to the last, as they are more intimately connected than any other ancient architectural forms with those of the Christians. They seem to have been at first much the same class of building as our Royal Exchange, both as regards use and plan; open in the center, with porticoes round. Then all was roofed over, and a sort of triforium or gallery formed over the porticoes. At one end was a recess, often circular and parted off from the rest by a screen of colums. This, with the space in front of it, formed the Tribunal. In Trajan’s, there seems to have been an apse at each end. Remains are found at Pompeii and Herculaneum, Treves, &c. A complete exception to the ordinary form is found in the Basilica of Maxentius (formerly known as the temple of Peace) at Rome.

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