Medieval Cathedrals Essay

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A cathedral is the principal chrurch of a diocese, containing the bishop's throne. One of the Greek and Latin names for the official "seat" or throne of a bishop is cathedra, which is where the name cathedral originated from. (Cathedrals). Cathedrals were located in important cities and built to be as large and awe-inspiring as possible. (Hinds). During the middle ages, some of the most spectacular cathedrals were built. Furthermore, a vast number of cathedrals were built in medieval times. Between 1050 and 1350 in France alone, over five hundred large churches were built. (Carr). Very elaborate architecture was used in the making of cathedrals, and much time and effort was put into the construction of them. In medieval times, the extravagent architecture of cathedrals was meant to show the wealth, power, and influence of the church. A great deal of time and money was spent on cathedrals in the Middle Ages. In fact, almost no expense was spared. Most cathedrals took over a century to build, and several generations became part of the building. (Medieval Cathedral). Medieval workers sometimes worked their whole lives building one church. Stone was the main material cathedrals were built from, mainly limestone. The stone was held together by a material called mortar, which is similar to an early form of cement. Wood was also an important part of a cathedral's construction, as it was used for holding up the roofs, flying butresses, and the doors. (Gothic Cathedrals).The architecture of cathedrals were largely based on the Roman Basilica. In earlier times, cathedrals were often built in the Romanesque style. This architecture was more solid and square. However, many cathedrals in later medieval times were Gothic, which was a style of architecture that evolved in the early 1100s and describes the particular church architecture that spread throughout medieval Europe.

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