Roman & Romanesque Architecture
During the time of the Roman empire, the Romans took over Greece. They adopted many ideas from the Greeks. The Romans added many ideas of their own to the architecture. they used semicircular arches, domes, vaults, and invented two new types of pillars. One new column was the Tuscan. It was like the Doric order (see Greek Architecture), but it had a base and no designs above the capital (top). The other type of column was the Composite. Those pillars has scroll-like decorations on top of carved out acanthus leaves.
The Romans built amphitheaters, baths, aqueducts, temples, basilicas (multipurpose halls), and many other things. Their theaters had a stage, seats, and an auditorium in the same building. The early temples were top heavy with wide eaves and bulky decorations. The later temples used the Greek proportions. They were lighter and more graceful. Corinthian columns were the most popular type of column for the Roman temples. The baths were huge symmetrical buildings with sunken in pools and high vaulted ceilings.
Roman homes varied in size and shape. The simple town houses were generally several stories tall. Their rooms were built around a large central hall. Sometimes there were openings in the roof of the hall. Country villas were larger estates built for wealthy people.
Roman buildings were made out of mud-bricks strengthened by wood. The more important buildings and structures were built out of stone. They had terra-cotta roof tiles. Later buildings were built out of strong cement that was coated with stones.
Roman architecture, along with Greek, is now part of a type of architecture called Classical architecture.
Romanesque architecture began around 1000 ad. It influenced architecture in Europe into the 13th century. The style used many ideas from Roman Architecture. the builders used Roman arches and vaults. They also reinforced the walls so that they could build a single barrel vault over the whole building, instead of the two or three.
The Romanesque buildings were very impressive on the inside and outside. They often had high ceilings, which were very impressive for that time, and sometimes galleries above the main floor. On the outside the churches had bell towers, which were built as separate buildings. Also, some Romanesque buildings had other towers built on the building. Examples of Romanesque can be found all over Europe.
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