c. 800 BC Mars rapes Rhea Silvia
c. 755 BC rape of the Sabine women
Campo Marzio introduction
The introduction will focus on the personal journey of my quest for discovery--I wanted to discover the secret of Piranesi's geometric planning dexterity--I wanted to find out how it could be possible to be as architecturally inventive as Piranesi. I also wanted to find out what Kahn learned form Piranesi.
The idea of just redrawing the plan via CAD, however, more or less became my modus operandi, and thus the initial quest developed into a general quest to find out as much about the Ichnographia as possible. There was always book research going on while I redrew the plan, yet I was unwittingly learning more about the plan's actual nature and structure by simply redrawing it than by the literary research. The literary knowledge did supplement the drawing, and in combination, a far richer understanding of the meaning and symbolism of the Ichnographiam manifested itself.
I can here discuss how the orthagonality of the longest axis was discovered because of CAD, and how the tiny intercourse building opened up a huge possible source for the planimetric symbolism of the various building plans. I should also go through all my notes to recall each breakthrough as it happened.
The final events where my learning of the reenactment theory within the philosophy of history and that then gave me a better understanding of what I was doing. Then came the deaths in September 1997, ending with the death of my father, and the dedication of my redrawing to my father brought my reenactment to a full fruition. Dedicating my redrawing in the same manner that Piranesi dedicated the Ichnographia convinced me once and for all that I was indeed on the right track and pursuing my redrawing process consummately.
Within a month or so of my father's death, I then came to the conclusion that Piranesi himself was performing a reenactment rather than a reconstruction. Piranesi was reenacting the ancient Roman Campo Marzio. He was reenacting the planning of the Campo Marzio (and the Scenographia is the empty stage set upon which the reenactment is played out.
"Modern man though regarding himself as the result of Universal History does not feel obliged to know the whole of it, the man of the archaic societies is not only obliged to remember mythological history but also to re-enact a large part of it periodically." -- Mircea Eliade, Myth and Reality, trans Willard R. Trask (New York: Harper and Rowe, 1963), 13.
This quotation seems almost a capstone to my whole Ichnographia as reenactment conclusion and I assume I may find even more to reinforce my thesis as I read more of The first house and Myth and Reality.
My latest thought regarding my introductory essay of the Campo Marzio is for me to reconstruct (and perhaps even "reenact") all the steps along my journey. I can basically just use my notes to retrace all the events, drawings and thoughts that I encountered and accumulated and came up with myself over the last eleven years. If I actually include my notes and all the drawings produced along the way, then this introductory document will indeed be lengthy "chapter". I will indeed pursue this documentation, and I feel assured it will come together because I will continually work towards the reenactment, and the documentation will also be a reenactment of my learning process, although I will not ever mention that under-riding motif except perhaps if I have already brought the reenactment issue to the fore.
...and perhaps Steve will have something to say on the matter, in the context of Piranesi and his remembrances!
I have to start by stating I know virtually nothing about the Etruscans and their relation to Rome and the Italian peninsula. Regarding the Roman (mythological) origins of Rome I do have some knowledge, however.
I began with a rape, specifically a divinity, Mars, raping a (Vestal) virgin, Rhea Silvia. [Perhaps an investigation into the history of the Vestal Virgin cult may reveal Etruscan origins?]
This rape engendered twin brothers, Romulus and Remus.
Then came fratricide in a fight for domination. Romulus killed Remus and thus the 'Eternal City' is hence known as Rome (rather than Reme).
To populate his namesake city, Romulus devises a massive date rape, culturally depicted as The Rape of the Sabine Women. [August 18, same date as the feast of St. Helena -- this is the only clue I'll provide now as to the 'Roman' Christian inversion of all the 'facts' here outlined.] So here we have the son reenacting the father via the act of rape all in the cause of procreation of citizenry.
A year or two after the rape of the Sabine women, the Sabine men decided to avenge their daughters and attacked Romulus and his urbs. Romulus remained victorious, and paraded his enemies armor to certify his 'triumph', hence the many times reenacted Roman Triumph.
So goes the 'myth' of the origins of an 'eternal' city and then the origins of an empire. In concise terms it's rape, fratricide, rape reenacted, triumph, triumph reenacted [and then Imperial Rome as a whole is reenacted by Roman Christianity, yet in an inverted fashion].
sacred or profane
Is Madonna falling off a horse sacred or profane?
Happy circa 2750th Anniversary of the Rape of the Sabine Women!
Did you know that the tradition of a groom carrying his bride over the threshold is a reenactment of the rape of the Sabine women?