Architecture made a great deal of changes and developments during the Middle Ages. This involved the types of architecture, the styles and the people who influenced or improved the constructions. It also affected and influenced medieval society and the modern world too.
Early forms of medieval architecture
The earlier designs of medieval architecture had features like pointed arches in the nave, window and doorways, small clusters of columns, pillars, small windows and thick walls. This was during the Romanesque period and a lot of the early Romanesque architecture had influence from the byzantine period, which was the previous time period of architecture. A lot of the architecture back then looked very structured, appealing and beautiful.
Types, styles and classes of medieval architecture
There were three different types of architecture in the middle ages: Military, Religious and Civic. Examples of Military architecture were castles and forts for defence. Zvolen Castle in Slovakia is an example of military architecture.
Religious architecture were buildings such as churches, cathedrals some shaped in the Latin cross plan. Civic architecture included houses, town halls, bridges, aqueducts, almshouses and residential houses.
Medieval architecture is divided into two main styles: Romanesque and Gothic.
Romanesque 800 to 1200
Romanesque (also known as Norman) was the first style of medieval architecture after the byzantine and roman style, and a lot of the architecture still remains standing today. It fits in with the earlier forms of medieval architecture described with round and pointed arches, barrel vaults and piers. Romanesque architec...
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...eligious architecture. There are so many churches and cathedrals that are still standing from medieval times, all over Europe, which are used today as tourist attractions. Cologne Cathedral in Germany and Reims Cathedral in France are two examples of Cathedrals you could actually go and visit today.
Even though most surviving medieval architecture is military or religious, there is evidence of civic architecture in Europe like domestic housing, residential property and bridges.
Medieval architecture made many innovative changes and developments in from 800 to 1300 CE, from Romanesque to Gothic, wood castles to stone castles, round arches to pointed arches, higher cathedrals, and much more. The architecture had improved and changed society, opened up new ideas and left us with knowledge, legacies and influence for our architecture today.
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