Sebastiano Serlio begins his account of the orders with a description of the Tuscan order that associates it with the practice of rustication, implying that the two should be joined because both originated in Tuscany. In the process of investigating how this marriage came about and what it means, this essay traces the Renaissance interpretations of the Tuscan order from Vitruvius and Alberti through Scamozzi and then undertakes to discover what Renaissance theorists knew about the ancient use, first of the Tuscan order, and then of Rustication. Returning to Serlio, it suggests that his association of the two traditions was adapted from the practice of Giulio Romano, and reflects an interest in the dialectic between nature and culture characteristic of the second, post-classical generation of 16th-century designers.

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