European architecture: its fact and characteristics

european architecture
Written by Dhrubajyoti Roy

Of all the continents in the earth, Europe is one treasure to be explored at from its mighty fancy castles to calm soothing mountains and theatres scattered all over with art and artist wandering in streets, Europe is heaven oddly placed in the earth, art and Europeans are like blood and flesh they are always together and in the case of architecture to it is same, many of today’s architecture is either inspired or developed from European architecture either one way or other, they gave the world beautiful arts and architectures.

  • Byzantine
    • Romanesque
    • Gothic
    • Neoclassism
    • Baroque and rococo
    • Revivalism
    • Art deco

Byzantine architecture:

Byzantine is one of the earliest forms of architecture which glorified at the roman times, though byzantine if one of the finest architecture had a purpose of its own like religion, it is entirely considered as a Christianity architecture as it used to construct churches.

Many of churches in Europe even today resembles the pattern of Byzantine architecture after hundreds of years from the formation, the architecture technique worked well with people psychologically and it leads to the growth of Christianity at the time.

The 527 A.D architecture style is still dominating most parts of the world and particularly in Europe, it still holds one of a very important places in the history of European architecture.

Not only churches even monasteries, castles, and museums to build with the Byzantine architectural style.

Dome roof has always been one of the core characteristics in the byzantine style, marble columns and mosaics along with gold painted ceilings are some characteristics of the byzantine structure.

Hagia Sophia museum:

The thousand five-hundred-year-old building is one of standing proof to the Byzantine architecture, it transformed as a museum over time but it builds as a church and by times it changed.

Alexander Nevsky Cathedral, Sofia is another remarkable Byzantine architecture, the pyramid dome shape added glory to the building and still display us the mightiness of the architecture style.

Romanesque architecture:

It is one trademark European architecture which made its way to a larger part of the world, Romanesque architecture is more resembles the period of the architecture, the 6th-century architecture is one treasure Europe gave to the earth and to the world of architecture.

The birth of Romanesque is more like human birth, with the combination of ancient roman and byzantine architecture it formed as Romanesque architecture style, it mostly reflects the ancient roman characteristics like sturdy pillars and barrel

Arches seem common in European architecture and it reflected in Romanesque too, triangular dome is some of the common features in the architecture.

San Miniato al Monte in Florence, Italy is a fine work made out of Romanesque style, the thousand-year-old architecture building with faded white color tells us the story of magnificent Romanesque architecture and its characteristics without any flaw.

Gothic architecture:

Gothic architecture is one of the oldest architecture and is still acting as a forefather of many architecture styles today, the European architecture values much than many of the architecture of its age, the root of gothic goes back to the French and Germany along

The historic architecture is influenced heavily in churches and cathedrals like any other European architectures, eventually, people adapted gothic in public buildings too and today some of the buildings all over the world resemble the style.

Increased vaults and exaggerated arches with entirely large-sized windows differentiate gothic from Romanesque and ancient roman architecture, flying buttresses with thinner walls also some of the core characteristics of the architecture style.

Notre Dame de Paris is one of fine gothic building, being built in the 13th century the architecture with un-imaginably high arches with giant-sized windows display us the reality of gothic style and still admire much architecture to adapt its style in a very modern way.


Though Europe has many legendary architecture styles and many emerged from the European soil, neoclassical architecture is the most successful architecture style which reached the wider part of the globe, united states are one country which highly adapted the neoclassical style, most of the highly official buildings are made out of neoclassical style.

The usage of plain color like white is commonly seen in neoclassic architecture, marbles acted as the core materials along with simple style with highly decorated sculptures are the characteristics of the architecture style, The grand geometry which represents the Greek essence but still seems simple to the eyes are the actual definition of the architecture.

The Altes Museum in Berlin is built in the neoclassical style, the 18th-century building with faded color stand as a proof in Germany, the simplicity of the building is what resembles the philosophy of the architecture, simple is more and that’s what the Neoclassism follows.

Baroque and rococo style:

Baroque is one of the fanciest styles in the world of architectures, the high decorations in the constructions made it to look odd from another European architecture style, the architecture played a major purpose in the Christianity and it did the job well, many people attracted towards Christianity after the evolution of Baroque architecture style.

Most of the cathedrals during the 17th century are made of baroque for its unusually beautiful structure and the decorations it carried within, though it is religious architecture it even attracted architects to build castles and theatres using the baroque style.

While the entire European architecture focused on arches baroque played with oval-shaped concave and convex structures, detailing of sculptures and paintings are always core characteristics of the architecture and usage of marbles with fancy colors and lights are considered as the major features.

Dresden Frauenkirche in Dresden is one of the most amazing baroque building in Germany, the highly decorated fancy building display us both the interior and exterior architecture style in an extraordinary manner.

European architecture

Rocco style:

Rocco or late baroque architecture style is a versatile artistic style which is used in architecture, painting, design concepts and much more, Rocco had most of the features of baroque architecture style and also have the scent of European architecture but the florid and fluid structure made it to stand out from other architecture s

The high usage of curves in the architecture made it to look a bit like luxurious Jewelry, the detailed decorations and asymmetric designs helped Rocco to differentiate it from baroque style, The c, and s-shaped ceiling, walls and Moulding are some of the core characteristics of the architecture style.

The pilgrimage church of Wies is building with the Rocco architecture style which is located in Bavaria, Germany, the snowy colored church with detailed design and fancy style stand as a witness for us to explore the Rocco style in the European soil.

Revivalism style:

Revivalism is one of most interesting style concept in the world of architecture for the visual design which we get by combining the previous architectures styles, it’s like giving birth to a baby by mixing the chromosome of two genders, the revivalism is all about mixing concepts of architecture and then to form a new one from it.

By using the same materials and characteristics of architecture but yet showing something different from its perspective, like remaking a movie with the same script but with different persons.

It is one of the most famous architectural styles in Europe at the early 19’s, the cool thing about revivalism is it can recreate any architectural style and then show us something new.

Art deco style:

In the list of baroque and Rocco, art deco to one of most stylish and highly decorated architecture style which emerged from Europe, the 19’th century architecture focused on mixing modernism with decorations and fancy elements to bring us a colorful architecture experience and it did succeed in its purpose.

The mixture of modernism with fashion resulted in high attraction and luxury buildings which leads to adapt it for theatres mostly and other such public buildings, the usage of expensive material has always been a characteristic of art deco and colors like gold, silver, and ivory with rock crystal are used highly to display the luxuriousness of the style.

The art deco is also a versatile artistic element used for crafts, Jewelry making, and of course, architecture, the usage of plastics too seen in the style, the inspiration of the style came from American Indian and Egyptian classical sources, and also from natural elements like animals and females. The grand rex – one of the famous cinema theatre in Paris and the world is made out of art deco style, it is one of the most luxurious theatres in the world and the architecture played its role well in making the building very famous and attractive.


Europe is the land of art and architecture with colorful buildings which resembles their culture, tradition along with their love towards art, there are architecture styles like contemporary and deconstructivism also played important roles in the European soil and even today most of the European architecture is ruling the world, the land of west have more surprises and wonders but least we know about and more to be explored at.

About the author

Dhrubajyoti Roy

I am a 5th-year student pursuing a bachelor's course in Architecture. I partake in freelancing work in the field of Architecture range from buildings in Autocad to 3D Rendering and work through in Lumion.

Leave a Comment