The Oeuvres d’architecture de Vincent Scamozzi published in 1713 in Leyden is the fruit of the work of three men well-versed in architecture: the author, Venetian architect Scamozzi, and two translators into French: architect to the king, d’Aviler, and engineer, du Ry.
Each of these men lived in a different century which is an interesting consideration as it indicates an additional layer of meaning with translations not only of language, but also over time and changing movements as d’Aviler, for example, was a promoter of the five orders in a more flexible form.
This work is not a simple translation of Scamozzi’s ideas — the full title indicates new designs of Roman buildings and revisions are also included. Additionally, a striking feature of the expanded title is its language with lexical fields evocative of advertisement. The phrases “exactement corrigé” or “plusieurs nouveaux desseins des plus beaux edifices de Rome” indicate that the work is to have a wider appeal as it is an “improved” and “modernised” version. However, the intended audience remains a circle of architects, engineers, and sponsors — this is indicated by the illustrious positions of the work’s translators, the expansive text from the publisher to the sponsor, the mayor of Amsterdam, and the technical details of the many drawings.
The structure is clear with divisions into eight books, glossaries, and indices. Texts on one side and illustrations on the other are the pattern running through with an interruption in book six which contains more text. It is not a portable work due to its length as well as the illustrations which combine both the technical and artistic.
The book is meant as a clear explanation and a tool for the furthering and propagation of Scamozzi’s ideas, notably including the five orders, with adjustments and increased flexibility.