Versão em português
N.º 8
pp. 29-38


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From Vitruvius' ceramic powder additives to modern restoration

Mário Mendonça de Oliveira

Doctor/Professor, Federal University of Bahia, Salvador (DCTM/PPG-AU), State of Bahia, Brazil


The text aims at giving a general view of the use of lime mortars additivated with ceramic powder taking advantage of its pozzolanic reactions. It emphasizes the main explicit references of this technique in the ancient writers, starting from Vitruvius and going through important theoreticians of the Renaissance, until it reaches the military engineers of the XVII e XVIII centuries, particularly the Portuguese engineers who had a strong influence in the overseas constructions techniques. Some mistakes in the interpretation of these texts regarding the properties attributed to the addition of ceramic powder in lime mortars are also mentioned. The continuation of the work refers to the description and commentaries of the tests and laboratory observations carried out on the additivated mortars in question. Among these are highlighted the hardening time, the mechanical resistance (axial compression and traction by diametral compression), water absorption by capillary uptake, total water porosity, accelerated aging in saturated solution of Na2SO4, loss on ignition x-rays fluorescence, permeability to water vapor and other procedures that contribute to the evaluation of the behavior of lime mortars additivated with the "cocciopesto" and of the pozzolanic reactions occurring in the material. As the theory would have no sense if it is not necessarily put in practice, the work ends with the description of the application of the mortar additivated with ceramic powder in a concrete case of restoration, with the description of the obtained results.


Ceramic powder pozzolanas
Additivated mortars
Mortars for restoration







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Conservar Património:
Oliveira, M. M., 'From Vitruvius' ceramic powder additives to modern restoration', Conservar Património 8 (2008) 29-38,

Oliveira, M. M. (2008). From Vitruvius' ceramic powder additives to modern restoration. Conservar Património, 8 29-38. DOI:10.14568/cp8_5.

Oliveira, Mário Mendonça de. 2008. "From Vitruvius' ceramic powder additives to modern restoration." Conservar Património 8:29-38. doi:10.14568/cp8_5.

OLIVEIRA, Mário Mendonça de – From Vitruvius' ceramic powder additives to modern restoration. Conservar Património. [Em linha]. 8 (2008) 29-38 [Consult. ]. Disponível em WWW: <URL:>. ISSN 21829942.

OLIVEIRA, Mário Mendonça de. From Vitruvius' ceramic powder additives to modern restoration. Conservar Património, Lisboa, v. 8, p. 29-38, 2008. Disponível em: <>. Acesso em: .


Online: 2017-10-3
Publication: 2009-8-10


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