Medieval Architecture: its types and characteristics

medieval architecture
Written by Dhrubajyoti Roy

From the first day of human civilization we have witnessed many form and styles of architecture, few of them acted as a revolutionary purpose while some of them created revolutions, medieval architecture is a form of many such architectures which are used in the medieval ages.

Architecture styles like pre-roman, gothic are included in the medieval architecture, in between the 10th century the tow major architecture is used vastly in the world, they are called as medieval architecture.

Medieval architecture played a major role in religions, culture and a great impact in the architecture itself, the core part of medieval architecture revolves around Romanesque and gothic architecture.

Romanesque architecture:

This is probably considered as the flagship architecture of the medieval European architecture, it is often called as nomadic architecture in England and the surrounding, Romanesque architecture contains core feature like thick giant walls and circular arches, during 9th to 12th century this is considered as the only architecture in the European region.

By colliding ancient roman and byzantine architecture style the Romanesque architecture formed and then evolved widely, the sturdy pillars being used made it look richer in shape and royal with their looks.

Like byzantine architecture Romanesque architecture is also used as a religious tool to build long and giant churches to make the appearance more attractive, though they had the royal look and rich ornaments in it, it looked more simple when compared to the gothic architecture.

Cathedral di Pisa, Abbazia di San Miniato al monte, Speyer cathedral, and the cathedral of Santiago de Compostela are few of greatest buildings constructed in the Romanesque architecture style.

medieval architecture

Gothic architecture:

Gothic architecture also considered as the child architecture of the Romanesque architecture, it had all the core features of the Romanesque architecture except few alterations like pointed arch, flying butter and window tracery.

Gothic architecture came to light when the mighty roman empire collapsed and the holy new roman empire formed, in numbers it is during the late 9th century and lasted until the 16th century, the name gothic came after the popular Germanic tribes called goths but they were spread across the European region.

When goth people chose their own architecture with few alterations from the Romanesque architecture it became goth architecture, like Romanesque architecture gothic architecture is also used for building churches and castles later but most of the architecture was of churches.

Though gothic architecture is vastly spread across the entire European region, France and Englan used it more than even Rome and Italy, it used to construct roman catholic churches.

Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore, Lincoln cathedral, St. Stephen’s Cathedral, and Westminster abbey are few of the best buildings constructed in gothic architecture.

medieval architecture

Both Romanesque and gothic architecture is used as a religious weapon in form of architecture and both played a very important role in constructing and spreading Christianity across the European region, both contain similar characteristics like arches and giants like structures with thick walls and a form of simplicity, other than just religious architecture it played major roles like political influence and military influences.

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.

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