Featured

The Old Supreme Court Chamber is the first room constructed for the use of the nation's highest judiciary body and was used by the Court from 1810 until 1860. Built by Benjamin Henry Latrobe, it was a significant architectural achievement, for the size and structure of its vaulted, semicircular ceiling were virtually unprecedented in the United States.
The Old Supreme Court Chamber is the first room constructed for the use of the...

Featured

The Summerhouse on the Capitol Grounds surrounded by pink azalea flowers.
A few ideas to help you in planning a visit to Capitol Hill.

Featured

Painted portrait of Dr. William Thornton
The Architect of the Capitol (AOC) is the builder and steward of America’s...

Featured

Photo of damage to be restored.
The focus of the Rotunda Restoration will be to remove hazardous materials (...

Explore Capitol Hill

Doric Columns

Doric Columns
Overview 

Doric columns typically have a simple, rounded capital at the top; a heavy, fluted or smooth column shaft; and no base. Flutes are vertical, parallel channels that run the length of a column. Columns in this style can be found throughout Capitol Hill, including the U.S. Capitol, the Supreme Court Building, the Russell Senate Office Building and the Cannon House Office Building.

The Crypt in the U.S. Capitol Building contains 40 smooth Doric columns of sandstone, which support the arches holding up the floor of the Rotunda. Also in the Capitol, Doric columns can be found in the Old Supreme Court Chamber, designed by Benjamin Latrobe. These columns are modeled on the Temple of Poseidon, which were the shortest and the strongest columns that survive from classical Greece.

The Supreme Court Building’s main corridor is known as the Great Hall, a grand rectangular vestibule that is 30 feet high and lined on both sides with double rows of fluted Doric columns. The columns rise to a coffered ceiling.

The Cannon House Office Building and Russell Senate Office Building, which are nearly identical, contain 34 fluted Doric columns each along their colonnades, facing the United States Capitol. Pilasters continue the Doric order along secondary elevations.