Identify the key functions of stained glass windows in the Gothic style.
Identify two (2) differences between the Romanesque and Gothic cathedral
structures, and discuss which you prefer and the reasons why.
Prevalent from the 9th through 12th centuries CE, Romanesque
architecture combined the influences of Roman and Byzantine styles. The
style was named, in the 1800s, because one of its key features, the
barrel vault, resembled the classical Roman arch. The use of barrel
vaults allowed for huge interior spaces built entirely of stone. But
that also meant the roofs were extremely heavy, so the walls had to be
tremendously thick to prevent buckling. Strong walls also meant fewer
windows, so the insides of Romanesque churches often look dim and feel
Gothic architecture began in the mid-12th century with the
intention of making churches look like heaven: soaring, colorful, and
bright. The biggest difference from the preceeding Romanesque style was
the use of flying buttresses. These support structures or towers, set
off from the main walls and attached by arches, and displaced the
pressure from the roof outward. Essentially, this meant the buildings
could get taller, walls could get thinner, and there could be a lot of
windows, which were often stained glass. Gothic churches have huge,
ornate, petaled round windows called rose windows. They also are much
pointier than their Romanesque predecessors, with pointed arches and
tall spires (instead of blunt towers) characterizing the style.
Nov 16th, 2014
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