The Basilica Of St Denis

2337 WordsApr 11, 201610 Pages
In this essay I intend to compare and contrast the Basilica of St. Sernin and Basilica of St Denis in France with references to how they differ structurally (as Romanesque and Gothic buildings respectively) followed by critical analysis of the advancements in architectural construction methods. The progression in architectural capability from Romanesque to Gothic led to a change in how religious architecture was approached spatially, with far greater emphasis on the use of light and a desire for greater height. To assess this transition one must contextualise the periods the respective basilicas were built in and the physical limitations as well as architectural preferences of the time. One must further assess why previously unfeasible technologies that now elevated the height of buildings and placed a greater emphasis for infiltration of light were required for religious reasons. This need for greater height and light exemplifies the relationship that people wanted between themselves and God in order to achieve a more fulfilled experience of their religion. This essay will attempt to consider and evaluate the dramatic change in the architectural style of Churches and Cathedrals and the transition from Romanesque to Gothic indicating the lasting impact these processes have left on history. One of the greatest surviving examples of Romanesque architecture in France is the Basilica of St Sernin completed in approximately 1118. The primary church was built on the tomb of
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