Palace of Tau
The Palace of Tau in Reims, was the palace of the Archbishop of Reims. It is associated with the kings of France, whose coronation was held in the nearby cathedral of Notre-Dame de Reims and the following coronation banquet in the palace itself. A large Gallo-Roman villa still occupied the site of the palace in the 6th and 7th centuries, became a Carolingian palace; the first documented use of the name dates to 1131, derives from the plan of the building, which resembles the letter Τ. Most of the early building has disappeared: the oldest part remaining is the chapel, from 1207; the building was rebuilt in Gothic style between 1498 and 1509, modified to its present Baroque appearance between 1671 and 1710 by Jules Hardouin-Mansart and Robert de Cotte. It was damaged by a fire on 19 September 1914, not repaired until after the Second World War; the Palace was the residence of the kings of France before their coronation in Notre-Dame de Reims. The king was dressed for the coronation at the palace before proceeding to the cathedral.
The first recorded coronation banquet was held at the palace in 990, the most recent in 1825. The palace has housed the Musée de l'Œuvre since 1972, displaying statuary and tapestries from the cathedral, together with the remains of the cathedral treasury and other objects associated with the coronation of the French kings; the Palace of Tau, together with the Cathedral of Notre-Dame and the former Abbey of Saint-Remi, became a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1991. It attracts around 100,000 visitors each year; this article is based on a translation of the equivalent article of the French Wikipedia, dated 2006-06-20 Palais du Tau website UNESCO website World Heritage website Reims tourism
Bourges Cathedral is a Roman Catholic church located in Bourges, France. The cathedral is the seat of the Archbishop of Bourges, it is in the Romanesque architectural styles. The site occupied by the present cathedral, in what was once the northeastern corner of the Gallo-Roman walled city, has been the site of the city's main church at least since Carolingian times and since the foundation of the bishopric in the 3rd century; the present Cathedral was built as a replacement for a mid-11th-century structure, traces of which survive in the crypt. The date when construction began is unknown, although a document of 1195 recording expenditure on rebuilding works suggests that construction was underway by that date; the fact that the east end protrudes beyond the line of the Gallo-Roman walls and that royal permission to demolish those walls was only granted in 1183 shows that work on the foundations cannot have started before that date. The main phase of construction is therefore contemporaneous with Chartres Cathedral, some 200 kilometres to the northwest.
As with most Early- and High-Gothic cathedrals, the identity of the architect or master-mason is unknown. The choir was in use by 1214 and the nave was finished by 1255; the building was consecrated in 1324. Most of the west façade was finished by 1270, though work on the towers proceeded more partly due to the unfavourable rock strata beneath the site. Structural problems with the South tower led to the building of the adjoining buttress tower in the mid-14th century; the North tower was completed around the end of the 15th century but collapsed in 1506, destroying the Northern portion of the façade in the process. The North tower and its portal were subsequently rebuilt in a more contemporary style. Important figures in the life of the cathedral during the 13th century include William of Donjeon, Archbishop from 1200 until his death in 1209 as well as his nephew, Philip Berruyer, who oversaw the stages of construction. Following the destruction of much of the Ducal Palace and its chapel during the revolution, the tomb effigy of Duke Jean de Berry was relocated to the Cathedral's crypt, along with some stained glass panels showing standing prophets, which were designed for the chapel by André Beauneveu.
The cathedral suffered far less than some of its peers during the French Wars of Religion and in the Revolution. Its location meant it was relatively safe from the ravages of both World Wars; the cathedral was added to the list of the World Heritage Sites by UNESCO in 1992. Bourges Cathedral covers a surface of 5,900 square metres; the cathedral's nave is 15 metres wide by 37 metres high. The use of flying buttresses was employed to help the structure of the building. However, since this was a new technique, one can see the walls were still made quite thick to take the force. Sexpartite vaults are used to span the nave. Bourges Cathedral is notable for the simplicity of its plan, which did without transepts but which adopted the double-aisled design found in earlier high-status churches such as the Early-Christian basilica of St Peter's in Rome or in Notre Dame de Paris; the double aisles continue without interruption beyond the position of the screen to form a double ambulatory around the choir.
The inner aisle has a higher vault than the outer one, while both the central nave and the inner aisle have similar three-part elevations with arcade and clerestory windows. This design, with its distinctive triangular cross section, was subsequently copied at Toledo Cathedral and in the choir at Le Mans; the flying buttresses surrounding the cathedral are slender and efficient compared to the contemporary but much heavier flyers at Chartres. Their steep angle helps to channel the thrust from the nave vaults and the wind loading on the roof to the outer buttress piers more effectively; the west façade is on a grand scale when compared to earlier cathedrals. The four side aisles and central nave each have their own portal reflecting the scale of the spaces beyond; as is the case with Gothic churches, the central portal carries sculpted scenes related to the Last Judgement, whilst the south portals are dedicated to the lives of saints - here St Ursinus and St Stephen. The north portals were destroyed when the tower collapsed but surviving fragments indicate that their sculptural programmes were dedicated to the life and death of the Virgin.
Unifying all five portals is a dado screen of gabled niches which stretches the whole width of the façade. The spandrels between these niches feature an extended Genesis cycle which would have told the story from the beginning of Creation to God's Covenant with Noah. Romanesque carved portals from about 1160-70 intended for the façade of the earlier cathedral, have been reused on the south and north doors, their profuse ornamentation is reminiscent of Burgundian work. The astronomical clock of Bourges Cathedral was first installed in November 1424, during the reign of Charles VII, when the royal court was based in Bourges, for the occasion of the baptism of his son the Dauphin. Designed by the
Our Lady of Reims is a Roman Catholic cathedral in Reims, built in the High Gothic style. The cathedral replaced an older church, destroyed by fire in 1211, built on the site of the basilica where Clovis I was baptized by Saint Remi, bishop of Reims in 496; that original structure had itself been erected on the site of some Roman baths. The seat of the Archdiocese of Reims, the cathedral was; the cathedral, a major tourist destination, receives about one million visitors annually. According to Flodoard, Saint Nicasius founded the first church on the site of the current cathedral at the beginning of the 5th century in 401, on the site of a Gallo-Roman bath; the site is not far from the basilica built by Bishop Betause, where Saint Nicasius would be martyred by beheading either by the Vandals in 407 or by the Huns in 451. The dedication of the church to the Virgin Mary suggests that the latter of the two dates is the correct one, given that the first church to be named after the Virgin Mary was the Basilica di Santa Maria Maggiore in the 430s.
This building, measuring 20 m by 55 m, would be where Clovis, King of the Franks, would be baptized by Saint Remigius on Christmas Day some time between 496 and 499. A baptistery was built in the 6th century to the north of the current site to a plan of a square exterior and a circular interior. In 816, the Frankish emperor Louis the Pious was crowned in Reims by Pope Stephen IV; the coronation and ensuing celebrations highlighted the poor condition of the church the seat of an archbishop. Over the next decade, Archbishop Ebbo of Reims rebuilt much of the church under the direction of the royal architect Rumaud, only ceasing in 846, under the episcopate of Archbishop Hincmar, who would adorn the church's interior with gilding, paintings and tapestries. On 18 October 862, in the presence of King Charles the Bald, Hincmar dedicated the new church, which measured 86 m and had two transepts. At the beginning of the 10th century, an ancient crypt underneath the original church was rediscovered. Under Archbishop Hervé, the crypt was cleared and rededicated to Saint Remi.
The altar has been located above the crypt for 15 centuries. Beginning in 976, Archbishop Adalbero began to illuminate the Carolingian cathedral; the historian Richerus, a pupil of Adalbero, gives a precise description of the work carried out by the Archbishop: "He destroyed the arcades which, extending from the entrance to nearly a quarter of the basilica, up to the top, so that the whole church, acquired more extent and a more suitable form. He enveloped it with a resplendent trellis, he lit up the same church with windows in which various stories were represented and endowed it with bells roaring like thunder." On 19 May 1051, King Henry I of France and Anne of Kiev married in the cathedral. Whilst conducting the Council of Reims in 1131, Pope Innocent II anointed and crowned the future Louis VII in the cathedral. In the middle of the 12th century, Archbishop Samson demolished the facade and adjoining tower in order to build a new cathedral with two flanking towers in imitation of the Abbey of Saint Denis in Paris, whose choir dedication Samson himself had attended a few years earlier.
In addition to these works to the west of the building, a new choir and chapels began to be built east of the cathedral, which measured 110 m. At the end of the century, the nave and the transept were of the Carolingian style while the chevet and facade were early Gothic. On 6 May 1210, the Carolingian-early Gothic cathedral was destroyed by fire on the Feast day of Saint John Before the Latin Gate due to "carelessness." One year construction began when Archbishop Aubrey laid the first stone of the new cathedral's chevet. In July 1221, the chapel of this axially radiating chevet entered use. Four architects would succeed each other until the completion of the cathedral's structural work in 1275: Jean d'Orbais, Jean-le-Loup, Gaucher of Reims and Bernard de Soissons. Documentary records show the acquisition of land to the west of the site in 1218, suggesting the new cathedral was larger than its predecessors, the lengthening of the nave being an adaptation to afford room for the crowds that attended the coronations.
In 1233 a long-running dispute between the cathedral chapter and the townsfolk boiled over into open revolt. Several clerics were killed or injured during the resulting violence and the entire cathedral chapter fled the city, leaving it under an interdict. Work on the new cathedral was suspended for three years, only resuming in 1236 after the clergy returned to the city and the interdict was lifted following mediation by the King and the Pope. Construction continued more slowly; the area from the crossing eastwards was in use by 1241 but the nave was not roofed until 1299. Work on the west facade took place in several phases, reflected in the different styles of some of the sculptures; the upper parts of the facade were completed in the 14th century, but following 13th century designs, giving Reims an unusual unity of style. Unusually the names of the cathedral's original architects are known. A labyrinth built into floor of the nave at the time of construction or shortly after included the nam
Church of St. Trophime, Arles
The Church of St. Trophime is a Roman Catholic church and former cathedral located in the city of Arles, in the Bouches-du-Rhône Department of southern France, it was built between the 12th century and the 15th century, is in the Romanesque architectural tradition. The sculptures over the church's portal the Last Judgement, the columns in the adjacent cloister, are considered some of the finest examples of Romanesque sculpture; the church was built upon the site of the 5th-century basilica of Arles, named for St. Stephen. In the 15th century a Gothic choir was added to the Romanesque nave. 250 According to legend, Trophimus of Arles becomes the first bishop of Arles. 597. Augustine of Canterbury returns to Arles after converting the King and principal members of the court of England to Christianity, is consecrated as bishop of the Church of England by Virgilius of Arles, vicar of the Holy See in Gaul. 1152:. Raimon de Montredon organizes the transfer of the relics of St. Trophime from the basilica of St. Stephen in Alyscamps to the new cathedral of St. Trophime.
1178:. The Emperor of the Holy Roman Empire, Frederick Barbarossa, is crowned at St. Trophime Cathedral by the archbishop of Arles. 1365:. Following the precedent of Frederick Barbarossa, Emperor Charles IV is crowned king of Arles at St. Trophime Cathedral. 1445 to 1465 The Romanesque abside of the church is replaced by a Gothic choir. 1801: When the Bishopric moved to Aix-en-Provence, St. Trophime was reclassified as a simple parish church. 1882: Raised to the level of a minor basilica by Pope Leo XIII. 1981: Classified a UNESCO world heritage site, as part of the Arles and Romanesque Monuments group. At the time the Cathedral was built, in the late 11th century or early 12th century, Arles was the second-largest city in Provence, with a population of between 15,000 and 20,000 people, it had a busy port on the Rhône, two new cities, on either side of the old Roman town, surrounded by a wall. It was at least formally independent as the Kingdom of Arles, it had attracted many religious orders, including the Knights Hospitalier, the Knights Templar and mendicant orders, which had built a number of churches within the town.
The apse and the transept were built first, in the late 11th century, the nave and bell tower were completed in the second quarter of the 12th century. The Romaneque church had a long central nave 20 meters high; the windows are high up on the nave, above the level of the collateral aisles. Though notable for its outstanding Romanesque architecture and sculpture, the church contains rich groups of art from other periods; these include several important carved Late Roman sarcophagi, reliquaries from various periods, Baroque paintings, with three by Louis Finson. Trophime Bigot is represented, there are several Baroque tapestries, including a set of ten on the Life of the Virgin; the church has been used to hold items from other churches or religious houses in the region that were dispersed in the French Revolution or at other times. The west portal is one of the treasures of Romanesque sculpture, presenting the story of the Apocalypse according to St. John, the Gospel of St. Matthew. Christ is seated in majesty with the symbols of the Evangelists around him.
The Apostles are seated below him. To the left of the portal, a procession of chosen Christians is going to heaven, while to the right sinners are being cast into hell; the decoration of the portal includes a multitude of Biblical scenes. On the lower level, separated by pilasters and columns of dark stone, are statues of saints connected with the history of Arles; the bases of the columns beside the portal are decorated with statues of lions and Delilah, Samson and the Lion. The cloister was constructed in the second half of the 12th century and the first half of the 13th century. For the use of the Canons, the priests who managed the church property. Under a reform instituted by Pope Gregory, the Canons were required to live like monks, with a common dormitory and cloister within the cathedral enclosure, separated by a wall from the city; the refectory, or dining hall, was built first, next to the church, along with a chapter house, or meeting room, for the canons. The dormitory for the canons, a large vaulted room on the east side of the cloister, was built next.
Work on the cloister began with the northern gallery the eastern gallery, which were finished around 1210-1220. Work stopped. Soon after the construction of the east and west galleries, the city began to decline; the Counts of Provence moved from Arles to Aix, the center of church authority moved to the papal palace in Avignon, in 1251 Charles of Anjou suppressed the movement of the leaders of Arles for more independence. In 1348, The Black Death drastically reduced the population of all of Provence; the southern and western galleries of the cloister were not built until the 1380s and 1390s, they were built in a diffe
France the French Republic, is a country whose territory consists of metropolitan France in Western Europe and several overseas regions and territories. The metropolitan area of France extends from the Mediterranean Sea to the English Channel and the North Sea, from the Rhine to the Atlantic Ocean, it is bordered by Belgium and Germany to the northeast and Italy to the east, Andorra and Spain to the south. The overseas territories include French Guiana in South America and several islands in the Atlantic and Indian oceans; the country's 18 integral regions span a combined area of 643,801 square kilometres and a total population of 67.3 million. France, a sovereign state, is a unitary semi-presidential republic with its capital in Paris, the country's largest city and main cultural and commercial centre. Other major urban areas include Lyon, Toulouse, Bordeaux and Nice. During the Iron Age, what is now metropolitan France was inhabited by a Celtic people. Rome annexed the area in 51 BC, holding it until the arrival of Germanic Franks in 476, who formed the Kingdom of Francia.
The Treaty of Verdun of 843 partitioned Francia into Middle Francia and West Francia. West Francia which became the Kingdom of France in 987 emerged as a major European power in the Late Middle Ages following its victory in the Hundred Years' War. During the Renaissance, French culture flourished and a global colonial empire was established, which by the 20th century would become the second largest in the world; the 16th century was dominated by religious civil wars between Protestants. France became Europe's dominant cultural and military power in the 17th century under Louis XIV. In the late 18th century, the French Revolution overthrew the absolute monarchy, established one of modern history's earliest republics, saw the drafting of the Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen, which expresses the nation's ideals to this day. In the 19th century, Napoleon established the First French Empire, his subsequent Napoleonic Wars shaped the course of continental Europe. Following the collapse of the Empire, France endured a tumultuous succession of governments culminating with the establishment of the French Third Republic in 1870.
France was a major participant in World War I, from which it emerged victorious, was one of the Allies in World War II, but came under occupation by the Axis powers in 1940. Following liberation in 1944, a Fourth Republic was established and dissolved in the course of the Algerian War; the Fifth Republic, led by Charles de Gaulle, remains today. Algeria and nearly all the other colonies became independent in the 1960s and retained close economic and military connections with France. France has long been a global centre of art and philosophy, it hosts the world's fourth-largest number of UNESCO World Heritage Sites and is the leading tourist destination, receiving around 83 million foreign visitors annually. France is a developed country with the world's sixth-largest economy by nominal GDP, tenth-largest by purchasing power parity. In terms of aggregate household wealth, it ranks fourth in the world. France performs well in international rankings of education, health care, life expectancy, human development.
France is considered a great power in global affairs, being one of the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council with the power to veto and an official nuclear-weapon state. It is a leading member state of the European Union and the Eurozone, a member of the Group of 7, North Atlantic Treaty Organization, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, the World Trade Organization, La Francophonie. Applied to the whole Frankish Empire, the name "France" comes from the Latin "Francia", or "country of the Franks". Modern France is still named today "Francia" in Italian and Spanish, "Frankreich" in German and "Frankrijk" in Dutch, all of which have more or less the same historical meaning. There are various theories as to the origin of the name Frank. Following the precedents of Edward Gibbon and Jacob Grimm, the name of the Franks has been linked with the word frank in English, it has been suggested that the meaning of "free" was adopted because, after the conquest of Gaul, only Franks were free of taxation.
Another theory is that it is derived from the Proto-Germanic word frankon, which translates as javelin or lance as the throwing axe of the Franks was known as a francisca. However, it has been determined that these weapons were named because of their use by the Franks, not the other way around; the oldest traces of human life in what is now France date from 1.8 million years ago. Over the ensuing millennia, Humans were confronted by a harsh and variable climate, marked by several glacial eras. Early hominids led a nomadic hunter-gatherer life. France has a large number of decorated caves from the upper Palaeolithic era, including one of the most famous and best preserved, Lascaux. At the end of the last glacial period, the climate became milder. After strong demographic and agricultural development between the 4th and 3rd millennia, metallurgy appeared at the end of the 3rd millennium working gold and bronze, iron. France has numerous megalithic sites from the Neolithic period, including the exceptiona
Mont Saint Michel Abbey
The Mont Saint Michel Abbey is located within the city and island of Mont-Saint-Michel in Lower Normandy, in the department of Manche. The abbey is an essential part of the structural composition of the town the feudal society constructed. On top, the abbey, monastery; the abbey has been protected as a French monument historique since 1862. Since 1979, the site as a whole – i.e. the Mont Saint-Michel and its bay – has been a UNESCO world heritage site and is managed by the Centre des monuments nationaux. With more than 1.335 million visitors in 2010, the abbey is among the most visited cultural sites in France. The first text about an abbey is the 9th-century Latin text Revelatio ecclesiae sancti Michaelis in monte Tumba written by a chanoine living at Mont Saint Michel or at the Cathédrale Saint-André d'Avranches; this text was written at a time of power struggle between Brittany and the County of Normandy against Francia as well as during canon law reforms by Roman emperors. When Christianity expanded to the area, around the 4th century, Mont Tombe, the original name of Mont Saint Michel, was part of the Diocese of Avranches.
By the middle of the 6th century, Christianity had a stronger presence in the bay. By this time, Mont Tombe was populated by religious devotees, hermits supplied by the curé of Astériac, who took care of the site and led a contemplative life around some oratories; the hermits Saint Pair and Saint Seubilion dedicated one of the oratories to Saint Étienne, midway through the mont and one to Saint Symphorien, at the foot of the rock. In 710, Mont Tombe was renamed Mont Saint Michel au péril de la Mer after erecting an oratory to Saint Michael by bishop Saint Aubert of Avranches in 708. According to the legend, Aubert received, during his sleep, three times the order from Saint Michael to erect an oratory on the Mont Tombe; the archangel was reputed to have left his finger mark on Aubert's skull. This skull is displayed at the Saint-Gervais d'Avranches basilica with such a scar on it; this sanctuary should be, according to a replica of the Gargano in Italy. Aubert had a local religious artifact removed and instead a circular sanctuary built, made of dry stones.
Around 708, Aubert sent two monks to get some artifacts from the Italian sanctuary Gargano. During this mission, the March 709 tsunami is supposed to have destroyed the Scissy forest and turned the Mont into an island. On October 16 709, the bishop put twelve chanoine there; the Mont-Saint-Michel was born. The remains of the oratory were found in the chapel Notre-Dame-Sous-Terre; this sanctuary contained the tomb of Aubert and most the artifacts brought from Gargano. The chapel Notre-Dame-Sous-Terre is today under the nave of the abbey-church; the first buildings became too small and under the Western Roman Empire multiple buildings were added. Charlemagne chose saint Michel as a protector of his empire during the 9th century and tried to have the place renamed Mont-Saint-Michel, but during the Middle Ages it was called Saint-Michel-aux-Deux-Tombes; the Mont-Saint-Michel monks, during the first century of their institution, venerated the archangel Michael. The Mont became a place of prayer and study, but the stability period, known as the Neustria, during the reign of Charlemagne ended when he died.
As the rest of Gaule was fighting invasions and science found some welcoming in the diocese of Avranches and at the Mont-Saint-Michel. At first, pilgrims kept coming to the Mont. After the Vikings captured the Mont in 847, the monks departed. But, as an island, it offered some protection for the local population and thus never stayed empty. After the signature of the treaty of Saint-Clair-sur-Epte, Rollo started repairing the damages inflicted to the religious buildings, he generously financed the Mont and called back the monks displaced by the war, returning the Mont to its previous condition. The wealth and support that the Mont obtained from Rollo started to fundamentally affect its inhabitants, taking them away from their solitary, religious life. After William I of Normandy took over his father's title as Duke of Normandy in 927, he expanded his support toward monasteries until his assassination in 932; because of their generous contributions to the Mont, the Dukes of Brittany Conan 1st, who died in 992, Geoffrey 1st, who died in 1008, were buried in the Mont as benefactors.
The rapid growth of wealth of the church-abbey Saint-Michel became an obstacle to its function and nature. The religious used their wealth, coming from the piety of the rich surrounding princes, to satisfy their pleasures. Local nobles tried to obtain the favors of the Mont's religious inhabitants to spend it on meals and hunting in their company, which became their main occupation; when Richard 1st, son of William 1st, became duke of Normandy, he tried, using his authority, to return them to a more monastic life. After failing to do so, with the approbation of pope John XIII and king Lothair, he decided to replace them with a monastery of the Benedict order, as mentioned in Introductio monachorum, a treaty written around 1080-1095 by a Mont-Saint-Michel monk trying to defend the independence of the monastery toward the state. After getting the approval from the local warlords and religio
In ancient Rome and balneae were facilities for bathing. Thermae refers to the large imperial bath complexes, while balneae were smaller-scale facilities, public or private, that existed in great numbers throughout Rome. Most Roman cities had at least one, if not many, such buildings, which were centres not only for bathing, but socializing, reading as well. Roman bath-houses were provided for private villas, town houses, forts, they were supplied with water from an adjacent river or stream, or more by an aqueduct. The water would be heated by a log fire before being channelled into the hot bathing rooms; the design of baths is discussed by Vitruvius in De Architectura. Thermae, balineae and balineum may all be translated as "bath" or "baths", though Latin sources distinguish among these terms. Balneum or balineum, derived from the Greek βαλανεῖον signifies, in its primary sense, a bath or bathing-vessel, such as most persons of any consequence among the Romans possessed in their own houses, hence the chamber which contained the bath, the proper translation of the word balnearium.
The diminutive balneolum is adopted by Seneca to designate the bathroom of Scipio, in the villa at Liternum, is expressly used to characterize the modesty of republican manners as compared with the luxury of his own times. But when the baths of private individuals became more sumptuous, comprised many rooms, instead of the one small chamber described by Seneca, the plural balnea or balinea was adopted, which still, in correct language, had reference only to the baths of private persons, thus Cicero terms the baths at the villa of his brother Quintus balnearia. Balneae and balineae, which according to Varro have no singular number, were the public baths, but this accuracy of diction is neglected by many of the subsequent writers, by the poets, amongst whom balnea is not uncommonly used in the plural number to signify the public baths, since the word balneae could not be introduced in a hexameter verse. Pliny in the same sentence, makes use of the neuter plural balnea for public, of balneum for a private bath.
Thermae meant baths of warm water. Writers, use these terms without distinction, thus the baths erected by Claudius Etruscus, the freedman of the Emperor Claudius, are styled by Statius balnea, by Martial Etrusci thermulae. In an epigram by Martial—subice balneum thermis—the terms are not applied to the whole building, but to two different chambers in the same edifice. A public bath was built around three principal rooms: the caldarium, the tepidarium and the frigidarium; some thermae featured steam baths: the sudatorium, a moist steam bath, the laconicum, a dry hot room much like a modern sauna. By way of illustration, this article will describe the layout of Pompeii's Old Baths adjoining the forum, which are among some of the best-preserved Roman baths; the references are to the floor plan pictured to the right. The whole building comprises one for men and the other for women, it has six different entrances from the street, one of which gives admission to the smaller women's set only. Five other entrances lead to the men's department, of which two, communicate directly with the furnaces, the other three with the bathing apartments.
Passing through the principal entrance, a, removed from the street by a narrow footway surrounding the building and after descending three steps, the bather would find a small chamber on his left with a water closet, proceed into a covered portico, which ran round three sides of an open court. These together formed the vestibule of the baths; this atrium was the exercise ground for the young men, or served as a promenade for visitors to the baths. Within this court the keeper of the baths, who exacted the quadrans paid by each visitor, was stationed; the room f, which runs back from the portico, might have been appropriated to him. In this court, advertisements for the theatre, or other announcements of general interest, were posted up, one of which, announcing a gladiatorial show, still remains. At the sides of the entrance were seats. A passage leads into the apodyterium, a room for undressing in which all visitors must have met before entering the baths proper. Here, the bathers removed their clothing, taken in charge by slaves known as capsarii, notorious in ancient times for their dishonesty.
The apodyterium was a spacious chamber, with stone seats along three sides of the wall. Holes are still visible on the walls, mark the places where the pegs for the bathers' clothes were set; the chamber was lighted by a glass window, had six doors. One of these led to the tepidarium and another to the frigidarium, with its cold plunge-bath (referred to as loutron, natatorium, baptisterium or puteus.