The intent of this project is to evaluate how the Christian church changed in the Middle Ages. Talking in the grand scheme of history, the change in the Christian church to what is known as Gothic architecture was heavily influenced by Islamic architecture. Making elaborate churches in its own right, Gothic churches had a great deal to do with leading into the Renaissance as well. In this investigation, the project is going to be focused on the structure of Gothic cathedrals and analyzing the changes that were made in the transition to Gothic architecture, as well as touching upon how it lead into the Italian Renaissance. The two main sources for this investigation are Cathedrals of the World by Graziella Ciagá and the documentary Building the Great Cathedrals by NOVA.
Summary of Evidence
At the dawn of Gothic cathedral-building, in the 1100s CE, building with rock was dirty and difficult work. And yet, architects and builders of the age were able to build stone monuments of the Middle Ages that dominated skylines for nearly a thousand years, revolutionizing architecture. In the period spanning the 12th and 15th centuries, these Gothic cathedrals borrowed from prior architectural knowledge, formulating a new building system. The gigantic Christian cathedrals took years to build, and were often left uncompleted for decades or even centuries. In fact, few cathedrals were finished in less than 100 years, taking large amounts of money and manpower to build. Despite the monumental task and resources needed, Gothic cathedrals have continued to amaze us hundreds of years later.
In considering Gothic architecture, the style first needs to be defined. The phrase “Gothic” was not created until...
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... of a height as Gothic cathedrals, Romanesque architecture had arches and columns that supported the structure above. Utilizing both prior knowledge from its predecessors, as well as utilizing its own innovation, Gothic architecture was able to create giant cathedrals that stand as a testament to human creativity and creation.
Total Word Count: 1,881 Words
Amiens Cathedral. UNESCO World Heritage Convention. Last modified 2013. http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/162.
Building the Great Cathedrals. Directed by Scott Tiffany. 2010; Boston, MA: WGBH Education Foundation. DVD.
Ciagá, Graziella. Cathedrals of the World. Vercelli, Italy: White Star, 2006.
Fry, Plantagenet. Great Cathedrals. New York, NY: Crescent Books, 1982.
Michael Fazio, Marian Moffett, and Lawrence Wodehouse. A World History of Architecture. London: McGraw Hill, 2008.
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