^ Measure, metre, irony: reuniting pure mathematics with architecture | Structurae
  • DE
  • EN
  • FR
  • International Database and Gallery of Structures


Measure, metre, irony: reuniting pure mathematics with architecture

Medium: journal article
Language(s): English
Published in: arq: Architectural Research Quarterly, , n. 1, v. 6
Page(s): 67-75
DOI: 10.1017/s1359135502001483

The human body once provided the fundamental measurements by which to gauge human creations – but the metric system offers ‘mere number without concrete being’. A synthesis is needed.

Measure:mens(L – mind),mensurare= measuring/measure

Metre:metron(Gk),metrum(L – measuring rod),mètre(Fr) = metre

Irony:eironeia(Gk – simulated ignorance),eiron– dissembler and simulator of power = irony

No civilization has existed without measures, and each has described measures in a manner specific to its needs. To exist at all, measures must be practical and useful, and most have their origins in everyday experience. At some stage in the development of a civilized society measures will be refined, standardized and regulated and represented physically. To endure and be accepted by hundreds, thousands, even millions of people – across great civilizations and around the globe – measures must reflect and extend the authority of leaders. Measure is therefore a statement and record of the changing balance of power and independence. It is an expression of culture.

Structurae cannot make the full text of this publication available at this time. The full text can be accessed through the publisher via the DOI: 10.1017/s1359135502001483.
  • About this
    data sheet
  • Reference-ID
  • Published on:
  • Last updated on: