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Gothic Architecture - Amiens Cathedral Essay

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The word gothic is related to characteristics such as dark, haunted, black, etc. but that was not always the case. In the Medieval period, Gothic style architecture was built to create plenty of entryways for sunlight. The brightness was meant to brighten lives, even more so in churches (Frankl & Crossley, 2000). The Gothic style was also a part of the movement away from the simply architectural style that was previously used (Murray, 1996). Gothic style was not just developed out of nowhere. It had evolved from the previous and relatively similar Romanesque style. Both of these styles were consider the break of similarity. Gothic style in particular was recognized by its point arches, slender columns, and ribbed vaults. The use of the pointed arches is what allowed the architects to use thinner columns (Murray, 1996). The arches put less stress on the surrounding elements, therefore the columns did not need as much support. Ribbed vaulting a characteristic that was seen throughout Romanesque style. Ribbed vaults are the intersection of two or three barrel vaults. There are often thinly vaulted webs in between the separate ribs as well. Gothic style was expressed in many churches and cathedrals in France throughout the 12th to 16th century. In this paper, I am going to focus on the tallest completed gothic style cathedral in France, Cathedral Basilica of Our Lady of Amiens.
In 1152, Amiens Cathedral was originally built in Romanesque style, but due to a fire the cathedral was ruined in 1218. Bishop Evard de Fouilly introduced the reconstruction plan of the Amiens Cathedral in 1220 (Unesco). This was the period in time known for when Gothic style was being evolved from Romanesque style; therefore, the restored Amiens Cathedral ...


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...nkl, P., & Crossley, P. (2000). Gothic architecture. New Haven: Yale University Press. – Book

Jantzen, H. (1962). High Gothic, the classic cathedrals of Chartres, Ameins, and Reims. New York: Pantheon Book. – Book

Mizera, K. (2008). Rose Window. Wikipedia. Retrieved March 29, 2014, from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Rozeta_Pary%C5%BC_notre-dame_chalger.jpg --Image 2

Murray, S. (1996). Notre-Dame, Cathedral of Amiens: the power of change in Gothic. Cambridge [England: Cambridge University Press. –Book

O'Reilly, H. (n.d.). The Medievals Were Barbarians . The Tradition in Action . Retrieved April 1, 2014, from http://www.traditioninaction.org/religious/h033rp.barbarians_OReilly.html --Website/ Image 3

Rickard, M. (1983). The Iconography of the Virgin Portal at Amiens. Gesta, 22(2), 147-157. Retrieved March 23, 2014, from the JSTOR database. –Journal




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