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The rule-based system

The construction system of the Yingzao fashi is rule-based; that is to say, we can specify the final product by specifying a small number of starting parameters. These are more or less freely variable within specified limits, and there is slight interdependence between parameters. We will deal with them individually in the following pages. In approximate order of decreasing priority, the parameters are:
the structural / formal type
the overall dimensions
building depth and bay depth
column height
rafters and eaves projection
building width and bay width
the grade, i.e., the absolute value of the modular unit

We discuss only some of the rules, particularly those which apply to our sample building.

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