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When was built the world’s oldest dome

Even if you are on a date with Rome is only one day, do not rush to the Coliseum. Even if it is a symbol of the Eternal city, but the ruins, though giant. A much more interesting object for tourists round the Pantheon, which is located in Piazza Rotonda (Piazza della Rotonda).

In pagan Rome had many gods and each relied on his temple. Sometimes it was built the Pantheon, the temples, which served all the gods. The Pantheon in Greek language and means “temple of all gods”.

The Roman Pantheon, perhaps the most famous of all. It was built in the year 123 by the Emperor Hadrian. Built on the same place about 120 years earlier, during the reign of Emperor Augustus, was built another Pantheon. The construction of the first Pantheon was headed by the son-in-law August, an outstanding leader and the architect Agrippa. In homage to the great predecessor on the pediment of the new temple was placed an inscription stating that the structure – conduct Agrippa. Although the new Pantheon was a building absolutely new and absolutely innovative. But more on that later.

Almost 500 years after the construction, on November 1 of the year 609, the Pantheon was turned into a Christian Church. It is logical that a former temple of all gods was called the Church of all Holy martyrs. Since Day1 of November is celebrated as all saints Day and the Catholics and the Protestants.

Any person, for the first time going to the Pantheon, could not restrain an exclamation of rapture. People humanitarian warehouse in the first place will be thrilled by the splendor of the interior decoration, the creation of which was attended by the famous Raphael. Maybe that’s why he was buried here.

Those who have studied strength of materials or structural mechanics, immediately raise your head up to admire the brilliant dome. The dome of the Pantheon is not just beautiful. This dome is not only highly functional. This dome is famous by the fact that he is generally the first dome building in the world. During the construction of the Pantheon for covering large round room with a diameter of 45 meters Roman architects first used the domed ceiling.

“So what?” – shrug your shoulders a fervent humanist. And then he’ll have to explain that without the dome the beauty would have been lost. Because of the overlap of such a large space in the traditional way would have put a forest of columns. Columns need not so much for beauty. They are the supports for beams. And a beam – whether stone, wood or too long will not do. It won’t hold its own weight and will collapse. Scientists conclude: stone does not work on a bend.

However, there is a design covering large spaces. This design is called the arch. Due to its curvature, arch support redistributes weight so that the stones forming the arch do not work in bending and compression and thus can withstand much greater load. All because compression stone works much better than bending.

However, to build the arch is not easy. Before laying the top, the castle, the stone arch is unstable and all the time you need to maintain. But as soon as the headstone will be laid, it will shore the whole construction and the arch will acquire resistance. All the supports are no longer needed!

Ancient Roman architects were able to construct perfect arches and applied them, for example, in the construction of aqueducts. But the dome they learned to build only in the second century ad.

Domed ceiling of Pantheon was erected by the best architects of the time. And used the most advanced at that time methods. When construction was widely used concrete. It was made of quicklime, sea pumice, gravel and volcanic dust. In the Pantheon concrete floor, concrete walls partially made. And the dome itself is completely concrete.

Before starting the construction of the domed ceiling, the rotunda is built up to the top filled with sand. For reference: the height of the walls of the Pantheon – nearly 43 meters and the diameter of the inner circular hall is about 45 meters. So the volume of this sand mountain is impressive. Technology in the sand have mixed a fair amount of gold and silver coins. Invite readers to test their ingenuity and before you read any further, answer the question: why?

On top of a huge sand dune built formwork, several wooden rings, gradually narrowing and thinning upwards. In each such ring is provided for a square excavation-caissons. Keshirovaniya the ceiling to reduce its weight and decoration used by the architects since the time of Ancient Greece. They can be seen in Soviet-era buildings, built relatively recently in the style of “Stalin Empire style”.

Formwork filled with concrete. Until the concrete has stiffened, she was held by the special pillars. After complete hardening of the concrete, the dome began to hold himself. All his tremendous weight was distributed on the circumference of the building. Then the formwork was dismantled.

For lighting and ventilation of the Pantheon at the top of the dome made a hole with a diameter of 9 meters. On a Sunny day in this hole passes a beam of light that is not scattered, and as it forms a light pole. The sight is very beautiful!

On a rainy day through a hole in the roof of the temple was exposed to water. Located on the floor of the channels were used for removal of sediment. But it’s amazing: if the Pantheon had gathered enough people, even in very heavy rain the water under the dome. The flow coming out of the vents of warm air carried the drops to the side.

Now let me ask you: what is in sand that filled the Pantheon under construction, have mixed the coins? Yes in order to save on the cleaning of the sand at the end of construction. It was announced that the inhabitants of Rome’s allowed to take the sand out of the newly built temple. And all they found in the sand coins become the property of whoever found them. And the sand was removed from the building in record time.

It turns out that Roman builders in excellence exceeded that of structural mechanics, but the psychology and knew well!

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