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The Architecture of Ancient Rome

            The architectural style of Rome was firmly rooted in the Hellenistic traditions. However, Roman culture is probably more accurately reflected in the development of new engineering skills and secular monuments. The style and construction progress of Roman architecture was different from other styles, even though the origin of their ideas came from the Greek architecture. The Romans were first to use math seriously for the arches, bridges, aqueducts, roof, and mainly the dome. The Romans took the ideas of architecture from other countries and adjusted it, so there were no support beams needed and the buildings were able to stand for thousands of years without really needing restoring. The modern nineteenth century buildings were not able to last for even 100 years without being restored, unlike the Roman's architecture which stood for thousands of years afterwards. The arched structure is one reason that the Roman's bridges were advanced for their time. The Romans were advanced in their ways of making a permanent bridge. First, they made a boat bridge which consisted of boats lain side by side. From the boat bridge, work began on the permanent bridge. It was to be made of wood and supported on stone towers called piers which were to stand in the river. .
             A Cofferdam was a double skinned box made of planks with the space between the inner and outer planks being filled with clay. This box was floated into position and then weighted down until it sank. The water was pumped out with buckets or a device called an Archimedean screw or tympanum The Cofferdams were built, so the laborers could erect the piers without going under water. First the piles of the Cofferdam, a piece of wood sharpened like a pencil, were driven into the riverbed, then pumped. When the pumping was finished, each pier stood on a foundation of tar covered piles and was constructed of carefully cut stones on the inside. The mortar used between the stones contained pozzolana, a volcanic ash.

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