Introduction To Burgos Cathedral

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If we divide the introduction to French Gothic into two separate phases as we should, the first step of the journey is Burgos Cathedral: the first of the Gothic Cathedrals in Spain. Most scholars reference the journey of Bishop Maurcio to collect Elizabeth of Swabia for her wedding to Ferdinand III of Castile as the catalyst for the style. Though we have no surviving evidence, it is believed that Maurcio encountered gothic cathedrals while traveling through France and took note of what he saw. It is also believed that he studied in Paris for a time, thus prolonging his exposure to the Cathedrals being build in that region. From its first conception, the King held a special interest in Burgos Cathedral despite the fact it was never made the official church of the crown. It was decided to construct the cathedral on the same location as an older, Romanesque building. Building of the cathedral happened at a rapid pace, with the first stones being laid in 1221 and consecration taking place in 1260. Restoration and additions would be made throughout the next hundreds of years, but the basic Gothic structure was erected in a considerably short period of time compared to other cathedrals. With the construction of Burgos Cathedral, we see the introduction of standard Gothic elements: the ribbed vaults, flying buttresses and pointed arches. Though Gothic architects were not the first to utilize these elements, the combination of the three have become key to identifying the gothic

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