By tracing the development of particular structures and building components from around the world and throughout history, Architectura presents a unique overview of the history of architecture and building. The text explores the social and cultural contexts surrounding the basic building forms, as well the means of constructing buildings. The book explains the technical achievements of builders, architects, and engineers; describes the diverse aesthetics of particular periods and movements; and celebrates the beauty and majesty of the world's greatest buildings. In addition, the book is exquisitely produced, and feature technical drawings, diagrams, awe-inspiring photographs, and original illustrations; it is fully authoritative, featuring contributions from a range of academics and experts from around the world. In short, it will suit both the professional and general readers, as well as presenting an attractive gift purchase.