He was best known as Vitruvius during the 1st century BC. Vitruvius was a Roman architect, architectural theorist and an engineer. He was an admirer of Greek architecture and was famously recognized for his treatise, De Architectura which was dedicated to the Roman emperor, Caesar Augustus. De Architectura integrates the historical background of prehistoric architecture and engineering in relation to his own personal experience. Ballistics was his expertise too. He also discussed the perfect proportion of architecture and the human body which was, in fact, the influence of Leonardo da Vinci’s infamous illustration, Vitruvian Man.
Alberti was considered as a multi-talented Renaissance man. He was a humanist philosopher, painter, priest, poet, musician and an architect during the 15th century. His published work entitled, De Re Aedificatoria, inspired great interest in antique Roman architecture. He didn’t have any proper education in architecture but his ideas were just products of his research and studies. He was also a master builder and theoretician. He used the volute or the spiral scroll on an Ionic capital as a new element to improve and modernize the façade of Santa Maria Novella which was established in Florence. Alberti was not only a theorist of Renaissance architecture but a great practitioner of it too. His writing entitled, De Pictura (1435) in which he emphasized that painting is an essential element for architecture. He also dedicated his treatise, Della Famiglia (1450) to the methods of education mainly because he considered home as the natural place for learning.