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Abstract

This paper focuses on the important scholar and antiquarian Giovanni Giocondo from Verona and in particular his two editions of the De architectura of Vitruvius published in 1511 and in 1513. Two illustrations of this friar are related to the two Vitruvian passages concerning the female architectural supports called Caryatids and the Tower of the Winds at Athens. A careful study of these two drawings leads to the conclusion that they cannot depend only on the Vitruvian text, but also on visual sources. These sources of inspiration are identified respectively with the so-called Lodge of the Caryatids of the Erechtheum at Athens and with the same Tower of the Winds. Probably Friar Giocondo got information and perhaps drawings of these two monuments in 1506 when he traveled in the Saronic Gulf. Thus Giocondo’s drawing of the Caryatids probably reveals that the wrong interpretation of the Korai of the Erechtheum as Vitruvian Caryatids already existed in the early 16th century.

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