Middle Ages

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Middle Ages

The architects wanted to escape from using wood for the ceilings. They began to use stone on the new types of churches. Barrel and groin vaults were used to support the heavy material.

The Middle Ages

The design of the Hagia Sophia was to have a great dome in the center of the building. The dome was unique because it was supported by four enormous pillars that were set in the shape of a square. This style remained the center of the Byzantine churches’ construction for the rest of the empire’s success.

Architecture of

The Romanesque period was from about 800 A.D. to 1100 A.D. The term "Romanesque" was given to the type of architecture in the 19th Century because of it's similarities between the barrel vault and the Roman arch.

Groin Vaults

Barrel Vaults

The architects began to build the churches in the shape of the Latin cross.

Romanesque Architecture

Buttresses were used to support the walls. Buttresses were simply large piles of stone that would be stacked along the wall to keep it from pushing outward.

What distinguished Gothic architecture from Romanesque architecture was the usage of pointed arches, ribbed vaults, and flying buttresses.

Gothic Architecture

Pointed Arches

Ribbed Vaults

Flying Buttresses

Dana Ochs

Each church had a nave that was typically bordered by three isles on each size.

Under the rule of Justinian during 527 - 565 AD, the most famous example of all Byzantine Architecture, the Hagia Sophia, was built.

Byzantine Architecture

Many churches and cathedrals took over a century to build.

The walls of the churches had to be very thick to support the ceiling. Therefore, windows were small to keep the wall strong. Because of this, the church's interior was quite dim.

The differences from the Romanesque style allowed the architects to make the church much larger and brighter. By transferring the weight of the ceilings to the flying buttresses, the architects were able to place great stain glass windows in the walls.

Now, the once dim and dark Romanesque cathedrals are transformed into bright and warm Gothic cathedrals.



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