Preview
Preview

The Dominance of Gothic Architecture in The High Middle Ages Essay

:: 5 Works Cited
Length: 1358 words (3.9 double-spaced pages)
Rating: Yellow      
Open Document
Need writing help? Check your paper »



- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

When one sees the Notre Dame de Paris cathedral in person or in pictures they are likely to be awestruck. The twin towers of the western façade rise high into the sky, seemingly in an attempt to scrape heaven. Spiky arches seem to grow out of the sides and claw at the ground. Inside it is cavernous with colored light filtering in through the large, intricate stained glass windows. All of these physical qualities make Notre Dame a prime example of Gothic architecture. It does not stand alone in that distinction. One is also likely to see several hundred examples of this style on varying scales throughout Europe. Because, despite its humble origins, Gothic architecture became the standard for religious buildings in the early 11th century thanks to innovative use of new and old design techniques which resulted in majestic buildings that symbolized the builder’s version of heaven.
To understand the appeal of Gothic architecture at the time, it is critical to start in the small suburb of Paris called St. Denis. There, lived a worldly member of the monastery named Abbot Suger. When he took over as Abbot in 1122, his first priority was to “fatten the monastery’s purse” (Gilgoff 59). He was able to procure more land for the abbey through royal donations and even won favor for one of the region’s large annual trade events. Thus, with the revenues he had collected, “he felt justified in spending lavishly” (Gilgoff 59). But, in his heart, he was very religious and sought to create a welcoming environment for his parishioners and saw the need to expand the church because “The narrowness of the place forced the women to run toward the altar upon the heads of men as upon a pavement with much anguish and noisy confusion" (Gilgoff 59...


... middle of paper ...


...ic lighting thanks to intricate stained glass windows. These glorious structures built by some of the humblest of men have offered a vestige of the divine for people in the past and the present and will carry on into the future.




Works Cited

Bony, Jean. French Gothic Architecture of the Twelfth and Thirteenth Centuries. Los Angeles: University of California Press, 1983.
Frankl, Paul. Gothic Architecture. Yale University Press, 1962.
Gilgoff, Dan. "GOTHIC GLOW. (Cover story)." U.S. News & World Report 134.23 (2003): 59. Academic Search Complete. EBSCO. Web. 12 Apr. 2010.
"Gothic architecture and art." Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th Edition (2009): 1-3. Academic Search Complete. EBSCO. Web. 12 Apr. 2010.
Scott, Robert. The Gothic Enterprise: A Guide to Understanding the Medieval Cathedral. Los Angeles: University of California Press, 2003.


Click the button above to view the complete essay, speech, term paper, or research paper

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »







This essay is 100% guaranteed.


Title Length Color Rating  
Essay on Gothic Architecture During the Middle Ages - Gothic architecture a new style developing from an old style of architecture with similar characteristics and in a way different. Architects wanted to build bigger buildings with stronger walls something that could not be found elsewhere. The old buildings did not have windows they were dark places that in order to get light they needed many candles. Not even the candles could give the right amount of light the buildings needed. The middle ages architects wanted big windows on the buildings and this new style made their wish come true....   [tags: architecture, world history]
:: 5 Works Cited
1228 words
(3.5 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Innovation During the Middle Ages Essays - The Middle Ages, contrary to its name, was a dynamic period of innovations. Throughout this period, visual arts were employed to communicate important messages to the public as well as private wealthy patrons. A variety of mediums were used to disseminate ideas. Though, the sense of decorum shifted, the purpose of these moralizing images of religious figures remained the same. Art was, as it still is an extremely useful and powerful tool for both religious and political advancements. The two pieces to be considered in this paper were created using scenes from the life of Christ....   [tags: World History ]
:: 6 Works Cited
2062 words
(5.9 pages)
Term Papers [preview]
Middle Ages vs Renaissance Essay - Life during the middle ages (1066-1485) was dictated by how much money you had. Were you a noble. Or were you a peasant. Your quality of life was in direct proportion to your status. Lords of the Noble class ruled territories, also known as villages. These villages mainly consisted of one room houses, with maybe a church and a blacksmith shop. Peasants or serfs lived in these villages and worked under said Lord. Daily life was all about survival. The days were spent planting and growing food, harvesting the crop, sewing clothes, and making any supplies that were needed to survive....   [tags: European Renaissance Essays] 2265 words
(6.5 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Essay on Middle Ages as the Age of Faith - Middle Ages as the Age of Faith The Middle Ages is often referred to as the Age of Faith and it is correct to do so, as during this period religion dominated all aspects of life from architecture, literature, art and music. The dominant religion during this period was Christianity. The middle ages saw "the emergence … of Christian literary forms… a popular religious culture centred around processions, icons, and relics" (George Holmes 42). The crusades were wars fought in the name of God or holy wars....   [tags: Papers] 887 words
(2.5 pages)
Better Essays [preview]
Gothic Architecture Essays - Gothic Architecture The church in the Middle Ages was a place that all people, regardless of class, could belong to. As a source of unity, its influence on art and architecture was great during this time. As society drew away from the feudal system of the Romanesque period, a new spirit of human individualism began to take hold; alas, the birth of Gothic. Here, the Church became a place where humanity became more acceptable, alas becoming the ideal place to visual such new ideals. The beauty and elegance of Gothic architecture is depicted most in the great cathedrals of the 12th, 13th and 14th centuries—St....   [tags: Architectural Middle Ages Churches Essays] 859 words
(2.5 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
The Contrast between Gothic Architecture and Romanesque Architecture Essay - The Romanesque and Gothic architecture period both occurred during the Middle Ages with the Gothic period taking place during the later half. Gothic and Romanesque architecture were related in many ways, but they also contrasted in style too. Over time, masons began to test the waters and push the limits. They thought of new ways to add lighting and ways to allow more height to the building without it being to heavy and weak. Many of the reasons for the change in styles had a lot to do with society and the changes it faced....   [tags: Architecture]
:: 5 Works Cited
1929 words
(5.5 pages)
Term Papers [preview]
The Medieval Gothic Cathedral Essay - The Medieval Gothic Cathedral The medieval Gothic cathedral was in many ways a civic building as well as a religious one. This particularly was the case with the famous cathedral Notre-Dame de Chartres (Our Lady of Chartres) in the town of the same name, 80km south-east of Paris, built in the 13th century. Chartres cathedral was planned not only as a place of worship, but also developed as the centre of the town's economy and way of life, as the place that housed the relic of the cloak of the Virgin Mary....   [tags: European History Architecture Essays]
:: 22 Works Cited
3409 words
(9.7 pages)
Powerful Essays [preview]
Gothic Cathedrals Essay examples - Gothic Cathedrals For nearly four hundred years Gothic style dominated the architecture of Western Europe. It originated in northern France in the twelfth century, and spread rapidly across England and the Continent, invading the old Viking empire of Scandinavia. It confronted the Byzantine provinces of Central Europe and even made appearances in the near East and the Americas. Gothic architects designed town halls, royal palaces, courthouses, and hospitals. They fortified cities and castles to defend lands against invasion....   [tags: Europe European Architecture Essays]
:: 6 Works Cited
1187 words
(3.4 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
american gothic design Essay - The most important aesthetic and philosophical style was developed in the eighteenth century, yet this style did not reach its apex until the nineteenth. With Christian elements and strong moral the movement appealed to the newly wealthy middle classes. The notable increase in prosperity that accompanied the Industrial Revolution was largely based on the accumulative benefits of inexpensive imports for the colonies. This new found affluence and status for the middle-class, has naturally revealed in the types of homes they lived in and the style in which they decorated and ornamented them....   [tags: essays research papers] 1377 words
(3.9 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Essay on Middle Ages - Middle Ages The history of the modern world derives from thousands of years of human history. Embedded in its history are the many eras of man which have constructed our modern learning, art, beliefs, and order. The middle ages, although represented as “dark”, backwards, and idle, were in fact a bridge linking the classical and modern world. Medieval society may not have been in a sense glorious, but the era of itself was a prime foundation of the modern world’s newfound stability, a revival of the law and teachings from the classical era, a reinvestment and reform in the church, and a precursor to the golden age of art....   [tags: History Historical Essays Middle Ages] 720 words
(2.1 pages)
Better Essays [preview]