The Gothic style mainly manifested in the architecture of temples, cathedrals, churches, monasteries. Developed on the basis of the Romanesque, or rather Burgundian architecture. Unlike the Romanesque style with its round arches, massive walls and small Windows, typical of Gothic arches with a pointed top, a narrow and high towers and columns, the richly decorated facade with carved details (winery, tympanum, archivolt) and multicolor stained glass Lancet Windows. All the style elements that emphasize the vertical.
In Gothic architecture distinguish 3 stages of development: early, Mature (high Gothic), and late.
The Church of the monastery of Saint-Denis, designed by Abbot Suger, is considered the first Gothic architectural structure. In its construction were removed many pillars and interior walls, and the Church has become more graceful look compared to Romanesque “fortress of God”. As a sample, in most cases, took the chapel Send-Chapelle in Paris.
From Ile-de-France (France) Gothic architectural style of rasprostranyat Western, Central, and southern Europe — in Germany, England, etc. In Italy he ruled briefly as a “barbaric style” quickly gave way to the Renaissance; and since he came here from Germany, it is still called “stile tedesco” — German style.
With the arrival in the early sixteenth century Renaissance North and West of the Alps, the Gothic style lost its importance.
Almost all the architecture of Gothic cathedrals is due to one major invention of the time — new skeleton design, which makes these easily recognizable cathedrals.
Gothic in France
Gothic art originated in the French province of île-de-France – the heart of the Royal possessions. The flowering of literature, science and the crafts turned Paris into the main city of the province, to the capital of European culture.
One of the masterpieces of French Gothic architecture is the Notre Dame Cathedral, Paris Notre Dame. The Cathedral was built on the site of a Christian Basilica. Its construction began in 1163, during the period of activity of Bishop Maurice de Sully and completed in 1345 the XIV century.
Notre Dame is a grandiose three-nave Basilica, simultaneously accommodating nearly 9,000 people. The length of the Basilica – 129, it has 5 longitudinal naves.
In the temple are 3 of the entrance portal, framed with origins in the depth of the arches; above them are niches with statues – the so-called “king gallery”, images of the biblical kings and French kings, a total of 28 figures. The centre of the Western facade is decorated with window-rose, with a diameter of about 10 m, and above the side portals stretched up Windows under pointed arches.
The special protection of king Louis IX used the Cathedral in Chartres (XII-XIV centuries.), where precious relics of our lady. In the construction of the Cathedral attended by many people. The construction of the Cathedral was considered a righteous deed for which a believer will be forgiven of his sins and ensure salvation in heaven.
“Royal portal” of the Cathedral in Chartres is a wonderful example of Gothic sculpture. The Cathedral in Chartres is also famous for its stained glass Windows, which covered an area of over 2.5 thousand sq. km.
In 1194 the Cathedral almost completely destroyed, survived only a “Royal portal” and the base of the towers. Later the building was rebuilt.
Sample “Mature Gothic” became famous French Cathedral in Reims – the traditional place of coronation of the kings of France. A Testament to the strength and wealth of the city and its inhabitants became the Cathedral in Amiens (1218-1268 years), length of 145 m and a height of 42m.
Gothic in Germany
In Germany the Gothic style developed later than in France. Without denying the priority of the French, the German art historians tend to see in the German artistic genius of the fullest and brightest exponent of the Gothic ideal of beauty.
In the XII – XIV centuries, Germany has experienced a period of feudal fragmentation. In these circumstances, have assumed great importance in the city. Centers of Gothic art were the town hall and town councils.
Wide spread in Germany’s Gothic received in the first half of the XIII century German Gothic cathedrals differed from the French. In an effort to more vividly convey the desire of the human soul to the heavens, the architects increased the height of the arches, crowned their pinnacles with spires. Especially decorative were decorated with Western facades of the cathedrals with one or two tall, slender towers. However, there is rarely used exterior semi arch (the flying buttresses), rose-window. Monuments of Gothic Germany architecture are cathedrals in Marburg, Naumburg, Freiburg, Ulm and other cities.
The most famous Gothic Cathedral Germany – Cologne. The construction of the Cathedral began in 1248 and was completed in the XIV century Tower of the Cathedral built in the nineteenth century. The building is 46 m in height decorated with many arches, spires, tracery fretwork, pointed arches. A magnificent sculpture of the Cathedral with the outer walls passed into the interior of the Church. She rhythmically connected with the architecture, but not with its rocky mass, and the curves of domes and arches. The statues themselves also have the characteristic curves in the form of the letter S. the Sculptures of the Cologne Cathedral original, unique, incredibly emotional, dramatic.
Gothic in England
Gothic architecture of England began to develop from the XII century and was mainly associated with monasteries, because of the city here played a less significant role than in the rest of Europe.
This is Canterbury Cathedral – the residence of the head of the Church of England; the cathedrals of Lincoln, wells, Salisbury
A characteristic feature of English Gothic cathedrals is the presence of two transepts (transverse aisle), one shorter than the other. English cathedrals have a considerable length: they were built in an open area and had the opportunity to run not only up, but ive. For English Gothic characterized by stretched facades, different vestibules, far transepts, a square apse, a huge (up to 135 m in height) towers over credo-a Baptist, a relatively small height of the nave (towards the side). Erecting cathedrals more elongated, the English architects supplied their Lancet arches, repeated in the Windows, and the same abundance of wall vertical gutters.
A leading role the English played Gothic decorative elements, for example, was a typical color contrast between the different types of stone.
The famous Cathedral at Salisbury, in southern England, was built in the XII century hundreds of medieval masons and carpenters showed miracles of skill to build this beautiful building. The Cathedral stands on the foundations of only one metre, because beneath it lies a powerful natural Foundation – layer of flint gravel. In 1225, was first consecrated three altars. On completion of the main building took 33 years and fully converted the Cathedral in 1258
Around the Cathedral there appeared a settlement called New Sarum, and today known as the city of Salisbury.
Between 1285 and 1315, to the Cathedral were added and the tower and spire. For construction was used 6,500 tons of stone. From such a huge load caved four pillars that support the tower and spire, and to redistribute the weight used the buttresses and flying buttresses.
Gothic in Russia
In the Middle ages in Russia, was in the sphere of influence of Byzantine civilization, the Gothic style was virtually unknown. However, a certain resemblance to European Gothic can be seen in the architecture of the walls and towers of the Moscow Kremlin. Gothic architecture had penetrated into Russia in the epoch of Gothic, that is, in the end of XVIII century. The emergence of the Gothic revival in Russia is connected with the name of the architect Yury Matveevich (Gerga Friedrich) Felton. Not far from St. Petersburg to his design were built the neo-Gothic Chesme Palace (1774-1777) and the Chesmenskaya Church (1777-1780).
Features of Gothic revival are present in the Royal residence in Tsaritsyno in Moscow. It was built by architect Bazhenov. According to his plan next to a typical European Gothic elements are combined elements typical of Russian architecture.
One of the typical specimens of the Gothic style in Moscow can be considered the Roman Catholic Cathedral of the Immaculate conception of the virgin Mary, was built in 1905 and restored in the 90-ies of XX century.
A number of religious structures built in the Gothic revival style and features to the East of Moscow.
Examples of medieval Gothic architecture on the territory of Russia can be seen in the Kaliningrad region there are about twenty castles and a great number of churches, but most of them in ruins. In Kaliningrad preserved medieval Cathedral and a large number of neo-Gothic monuments. Keep a small number of buildings and in the Leningrad region. Most of them can be found in Vyborg in the old town, but most importantly — Russia’s only medieval castle, founded by Swedes in 1293.