Norman architecture
Overview
 
About|Romanesque architecture, primarily English|other buildings in Normandy|Architecture of Normandy.
File:Durham Cathedral. Nave by James Valentine c.1890.jpg|thumb|200px|The nave of Durham Cathedral demonstrates the characteristic round arched style, though use of shallow pointed arches above the nave is a forerunner of the "Gothic" style.]]
The term Norman architecture is used to categorise styles of Romanesque architecture
Romanesque architecture
Romanesque architecture is an architectural style of Medieval Europe characterised by semi-circular arches. There is no consensus for the beginning date of the Romanesque architecture, with proposals ranging from the 6th to the 10th century. It developed in the 12th century into the Gothic style,...

 developed by the Normans
Normans
The Normans were the people who gave their name to Normandy, a region in northern France. They were descended from Norse Viking conquerors of the territory and the native population of Frankish and Gallo-Roman stock...

 in the various lands under their dominion or influence in the 11th and 12th centuries.
Discussions
Encyclopedia
About|Romanesque architecture, primarily English|other buildings in Normandy|Architecture of Normandy.
File:Durham Cathedral. Nave by James Valentine c.1890.jpg|thumb|200px|The nave of Durham Cathedral demonstrates the characteristic round arched style, though use of shallow pointed arches above the nave is a forerunner of the "Gothic" style.]]
The term Norman architecture is used to categorise styles of Romanesque architecture
Romanesque architecture
Romanesque architecture is an architectural style of Medieval Europe characterised by semi-circular arches. There is no consensus for the beginning date of the Romanesque architecture, with proposals ranging from the 6th to the 10th century. It developed in the 12th century into the Gothic style,...

 developed by the Normans
Normans
The Normans were the people who gave their name to Normandy, a region in northern France. They were descended from Norse Viking conquerors of the territory and the native population of Frankish and Gallo-Roman stock...

 in the various lands under their dominion or influence in the 11th and 12th centuries. In particular the term is traditionally used for English Romanesque architecture. The Normans introduced large numbers of castle
Castle
A castle is a type of fortified structure built in Europe and the Middle East during the Middle Ages by European nobility. Scholars debate the scope of the word castle, but usually consider it to be the private fortified residence of a lord or noble...

s and fortification
Fortification
Fortifications are military constructions and buildings designed for defence in warfare and military bases. Humans have constructed defensive works for many thousands of years, in a variety of increasingly complex designs...

s including Norman keep
Keep
A keep is a type of fortified tower built within castles during the Middle Ages by European nobility. Scholars have debated the scope of the word keep, but usually consider it to refer to large towers in castles that were fortified residences, used as a refuge of last resort should the rest of the...

s, and at the same time monasteries
Monastery
Monastery denotes the building, or complex of buildings, that houses a room reserved for prayer as well as the domestic quarters and workplace of monastics, whether monks or nuns, and whether living in community or alone .Monasteries may vary greatly in size – a small dwelling accommodating only...

, abbey
Abbey
An abbey is a Catholic monastery or convent, under the authority of an Abbot or an Abbess, who serves as the spiritual father or mother of the community.The term can also refer to an establishment which has long ceased to function as an abbey,...

s, churches and cathedral
Cathedral
A cathedral is a Christian church that contains the seat of a bishop...

s, in a style characterised by the usual Romanesque rounded arch
Arch
An arch is a structure that spans a space and supports a load. Arches appeared as early as the 2nd millennium BC in Mesopotamian brick architecture and their systematic use started with the Ancient Romans who were the first to apply the technique to a wide range of structures.-Technical aspects:The...

es (particularly over windows and doorways) and especially massive proportions compared to other regional variations of the style.

These Romanesque
Romanesque architecture
Romanesque architecture is an architectural style of Medieval Europe characterised by semi-circular arches. There is no consensus for the beginning date of the Romanesque architecture, with proposals ranging from the 6th to the 10th century. It developed in the 12th century into the Gothic style,...

 styles originated in Normandy
Normandy
Normandy is a geographical region corresponding to the former Duchy of Normandy. It is in France.The continental territory covers 30,627 km² and forms the preponderant part of Normandy and roughly 5% of the territory of France. It is divided for administrative purposes into two régions:...

 and became widespread in north western Europe
Europe
Europe is, by convention, one of the world's seven continents. Comprising the westernmost peninsula of Eurasia, Europe is generally 'divided' from Asia to its east by the watershed divides of the Ural and Caucasus Mountains, the Ural River, the Caspian and Black Seas, and the waterways connecting...

, particularly in England
England
England is a country that is part of the United Kingdom. It shares land borders with Scotland to the north and Wales to the west; the Irish Sea is to the north west, the Celtic Sea to the south west, with the North Sea to the east and the English Channel to the south separating it from continental...

, which contributed considerable development and has the largest number of surviving examples. At about the same time a Norman dynasty
Hauteville family
The family of the Hauteville was a petty baronial Norman family from the Cotentin which rose to prominence in Europe, Asia, and Africa through its conquests in the Mediterranean, especially Southern Italy and Sicily...

 ruled in Sicily
Sicily
Sicily is a region of Italy, and is the largest island in the Mediterranean Sea. Along with the surrounding minor islands, it constitutes an autonomous region of Italy, the Regione Autonoma Siciliana Sicily has a rich and unique culture, especially with regard to the arts, music, literature,...

, producing a distinctive variation incorporating Byzantine
Byzantine Empire
The Byzantine Empire was the Eastern Roman Empire during the periods of Late Antiquity and the Middle Ages, centred on the capital of Constantinople. Known simply as the Roman Empire or Romania to its inhabitants and neighbours, the Empire was the direct continuation of the Ancient Roman State...

 and Saracen
Saracen
Saracen was a term used by the ancient Romans to refer to a people who lived in desert areas in and around the Roman province of Arabia, and who were distinguished from Arabs. In Europe during the Middle Ages the term was expanded to include Arabs, and then all who professed the religion of Islam...

 influences which is also known as Norman architecture, or alternatively as Sicilian Romanesque.

Origin of the term, development into Gothic

The term may have originated with 18th century antiquarian
Antiquarian
An antiquarian or antiquary is an aficionado or student of antiquities or things of the past. More specifically, the term is used for those who study history with particular attention to ancient objects of art or science, archaeological and historic sites, or historic archives and manuscripts...

s, but its usage in a sequence of styles has been attributed to Thomas Rickman
Thomas Rickman
Thomas Rickman , was an English architect who was a major figure in the Gothic Revival.He was born at Maidenhead, Berkshire, into a large Quaker family, and avoided the medical career envisaged for him by his father, a grocer and druggist; he went into business for himself and married his first...

 in his 1817 work An Attempt to Discriminate the Styles of English Architecture from the Conquest to the Reformation which used the labels "Norman, Early English, Decorated, and Perpendicular". The more inclusive term romanesque was used of the Romance languages
Romance languages
The Romance languages are a branch of the Indo-European language family, more precisely of the Italic languages subfamily, comprising all the languages that descend from Vulgar Latin, the language of ancient Rome...

 in English by 1715, and was applied to architecture of the eleventh and twelfth centuries from 1819. Although Edward the Confessor
Edward the Confessor
Edward the Confessor also known as St. Edward the Confessor , son of Æthelred the Unready and Emma of Normandy, was one of the last Anglo-Saxon kings of England and is usually regarded as the last king of the House of Wessex, ruling from 1042 to 1066....

 built Westminster Abbey
Westminster Abbey
The Collegiate Church of St Peter at Westminster, popularly known as Westminster Abbey, is a large, mainly Gothic church, in the City of Westminster, London, United Kingdom, located just to the west of the Palace of Westminster. It is the traditional place of coronation and burial site for English,...

 in Romanesque style (now all replaced by later rebuildings) just before the Conquest, which is still believed to be the earliest major Romanesque building in England, no significant remaining Romanesque architecture in Britain can clearly be shown to predate the Conquest, although historians believe that many surviving "Norman" elements in buildings, nearly all churches, may well in fact be Anglo-Saxon.

As master masons developed the style and experimented with ways of overcoming the geometric difficulties of groin vault
Groin vault
A groin vault or groined vault is produced by the intersection at right angles of two barrel vaults. The word groin refers to the edge between the intersecting vaults; cf. ribbed vault. Sometimes the arches of groin vaults are pointed instead of round...

ed ceilings, they introduced features such as the pointed arch which were later characterised as being Gothic
Gothic architecture
Gothic architecture is a style of architecture that flourished during the high and late medieval period. It evolved from Romanesque architecture and was succeeded by Renaissance architecture....

 in style. Architectural historians and scholars consider that a style must be assessed as an integral whole rather than an aggregate of features, and while some include these developments within the Norman or Romanesque styles, others describe them as transitional or "Norman-Gothic Transitional". A few websites use the term "Norman Gothic", but it is unclear whether they refer to the transitional style or to the Norman style as a whole.,

Neo-Norman

A style of architecture that emulates works of Norman architecture from the 11th and 12th century Romanesque in Britain and Normandy. These works are prominent in many 20th century buildings and spaces, particularly the arch and pillars. There are two examples in Manchester: the former Stock Exchange building and a synagogue in Fallowfield
Fallowfield
Ladybarn is the part of Fallowfield to the south-east. Chancellors Hotel & Conference Centre is used by the University of Manchester: it was built by Edward Walters for Sir Joseph Whitworth, as were the Firs Botanical Grounds.-Religion:...

.

Norman architecture in Normandy

Viking
Viking
The term Viking is customarily used to refer to the Norse explorers, warriors, merchants, and pirates who raided, traded, explored and settled in wide areas of Europe, Asia and the North Atlantic islands from the late 8th to the mid-11th century.These Norsemen used their famed longships to...

 invaders arrived at the mouth of the river Seine in 911, at a time when Franks
Franks
The Franks were a confederation of Germanic tribes first attested in the third century AD as living north and east of the Lower Rhine River. From the third to fifth centuries some Franks raided Roman territory while other Franks joined the Roman troops in Gaul. Only the Salian Franks formed a...

 were fighting on horseback and Frankish lords were building castles. Over the next century the population of the territory ceded to the Vikings, now called Normans
Normans
The Normans were the people who gave their name to Normandy, a region in northern France. They were descended from Norse Viking conquerors of the territory and the native population of Frankish and Gallo-Roman stock...

, adopted these customs as well as Christianity and the langue d'oïl. Norman Barons built timber castles on earthen mounds, beginning the development of motte-and-bailey
Motte-and-bailey
A motte-and-bailey is a form of castle, with a wooden or stone keep situated on a raised earthwork called a motte, accompanied by an enclosed courtyard, or bailey, surrounded by a protective ditch and palisade...

 castles, and great stone churches in the Romanesque style of the Franks. By 950 they were building stone keep
Keep
A keep is a type of fortified tower built within castles during the Middle Ages by European nobility. Scholars have debated the scope of the word keep, but usually consider it to refer to large towers in castles that were fortified residences, used as a refuge of last resort should the rest of the...

s. The Normans were among the most travelled peoples of Europe, exposed to a wide variety of cultural influences including the Near East
Near East
The Near East is a geographical term that covers different countries for geographers, archeologists, and historians, on the one hand, and for political scientists, economists, and journalists, on the other...

, some of which became incorporated in their art and architecture. They elaborated on the Early Christian basilica plan, longitudinal with side aisles and an apse, and a western facade with two towers as at the Church of Saint-Étienne
Abbaye-aux-Hommes
The Abbaye aux Hommes is a former abbey church in the French city of Caen, Normandy. Dedicated to Saint Stephen , it is considered, along with the neighbouring Abbaye aux Dames , to be one of the most notable Romanesque buildings in Normandy. Like all the major abbeys in Normandy, it was Benedictine...

 at Caen begun in 1067, which formed a model for the larger English cathedral
Cathedral
A cathedral is a Christian church that contains the seat of a bishop...

s beginning some twenty years later.

Norman architecture in England

In England
England
England is a country that is part of the United Kingdom. It shares land borders with Scotland to the north and Wales to the west; the Irish Sea is to the north west, the Celtic Sea to the south west, with the North Sea to the east and the English Channel to the south separating it from continental...

, Norman nobles and bishops had influence before the Norman Conquest of 1066, and Norman influences affected late Anglo-Saxon architecture
Anglo-Saxon architecture
Anglo-Saxon architecture was a period in the history of architecture in England, and parts of Wales, from the mid-5th century until the Norman Conquest of 1066. Anglo-Saxon secular buildings in Britain were generally simple, constructed mainly using timber with thatch for roofing...

. Edward the Confessor
Edward the Confessor
Edward the Confessor also known as St. Edward the Confessor , son of Æthelred the Unready and Emma of Normandy, was one of the last Anglo-Saxon kings of England and is usually regarded as the last king of the House of Wessex, ruling from 1042 to 1066....

 was brought up in Normandy, and in 1042 brought masons to work on Westminster Abbey
Westminster Abbey
The Collegiate Church of St Peter at Westminster, popularly known as Westminster Abbey, is a large, mainly Gothic church, in the City of Westminster, London, United Kingdom, located just to the west of the Palace of Westminster. It is the traditional place of coronation and burial site for English,...

, the first Romanesque building in England.
In 1051 he brought in Norman knight
Knight
A knight was a member of a class of lower nobility in the High Middle Ages.By the Late Middle Ages, the rank had become associated with the ideals of chivalry, a code of conduct for the perfect courtly Christian warrior....

s who built "motte" castles as a defence against the Welsh
Wales
Wales is a country that is part of the United Kingdom and the island of Great Britain, bordered by England to its east and the Atlantic Ocean and Irish Sea to its west. It has a population of three million, and a total area of 20,779 km²...

. Following the invasion Normans rapidly constructed motte-and-bailey
Motte-and-bailey
A motte-and-bailey is a form of castle, with a wooden or stone keep situated on a raised earthwork called a motte, accompanied by an enclosed courtyard, or bailey, surrounded by a protective ditch and palisade...

 castles, and in a burst of building activity built churches and abbey
Abbey
An abbey is a Catholic monastery or convent, under the authority of an Abbot or an Abbess, who serves as the spiritual father or mother of the community.The term can also refer to an establishment which has long ceased to function as an abbey,...

s, as well as more elaborate fortification
Fortification
Fortifications are military constructions and buildings designed for defence in warfare and military bases. Humans have constructed defensive works for many thousands of years, in a variety of increasingly complex designs...

s including Norman stone keep
Keep
A keep is a type of fortified tower built within castles during the Middle Ages by European nobility. Scholars have debated the scope of the word keep, but usually consider it to refer to large towers in castles that were fortified residences, used as a refuge of last resort should the rest of the...

s.

The buildings show massive proportions in simple geometries, the masonry
Masonry
Masonry is the building of structures from individual units laid in and bound together by mortar; the term masonry can also refer to the units themselves. The common materials of masonry construction are brick, stone, marble, granite, travertine, limestone; concrete block, glass block, stucco, and...

 with small bands of sculpture
Sculpture
Sculpture is three-dimensional artwork created by shaping or combining hard materials—typically stone such as marble—or metal, glass, or wood. Softer materials can also be used, such as clay, textiles, plastics, polymers and softer metals...

, perhaps as blind arcading, and concentrated spaces of capital
Capital (architecture)
In architecture the capital forms the topmost member of a column . It mediates between the column and the load thrusting down upon it, broadening the area of the column's supporting surface...

s and round doorways and in the tympanum
Tympanum (architecture)
In architecture, a tympanum is the semi-circular or triangular decorative wall surface over an entrance, bounded by a lintel and arch. It often contains sculpture or other imagery or ornaments. Most architectural styles include this element....

 under an arch
Arch
An arch is a structure that spans a space and supports a load. Arches appeared as early as the 2nd millennium BC in Mesopotamian brick architecture and their systematic use started with the Ancient Romans who were the first to apply the technique to a wide range of structures.-Technical aspects:The...

. The "Norman arch" is the round arch. Norman mouldings are carved or incised with geometric ornament, such as chevron patterns, frequently termed "zig zag mouldings
Zig zag
Zigzag is a jagged, regular pattern.Zig zag, Zig Zag, Zigzag, or Zig-zag may also refer to:- Animals :* Several types of salamander living in the U.S.:** Southern Zigzag Salamander** Northern Zigzag Salamander...

", around arches. The cruciform churches often had deep chancel
Chancel
In church architecture, the chancel is the space around the altar in the sanctuary at the liturgical east end of a traditional Christian church building...

s and a square crossing tower which has remained a feature of English ecclesiastical architecture. Hundreds of parish
Parish
A parish is a territorial unit historically under the pastoral care and clerical jurisdiction of one parish priest, who might be assisted in his pastoral duties by a curate or curates - also priests but not the parish priest - from a more or less central parish church with its associated organization...

 churches were built and the great English cathedral
Cathedral
A cathedral is a Christian church that contains the seat of a bishop...

s were founded from 1083.

After a fire damaged Canterbury Cathedral
Canterbury Cathedral
Canterbury Cathedral in Canterbury, Kent, is one of the oldest and most famous Christian structures in England and forms part of a World Heritage Site....

 in 1174 Norman masons introduced the new Gothic architecture
Gothic architecture
Gothic architecture is a style of architecture that flourished during the high and late medieval period. It evolved from Romanesque architecture and was succeeded by Renaissance architecture....

. Around 1191 Wells Cathedral
Wells Cathedral
Wells Cathedral is a Church of England cathedral in Wells, Somerset, England. It is the seat of the Bishop of Bath and Wells, who lives at the adjacent Bishop's Palace....

 and Lincoln Cathedral
Lincoln Cathedral
Lincoln Cathedral is a historic Anglican cathedral in Lincoln in England and seat of the Bishop of Lincoln in the Church of England. It was reputedly the tallest building in the world for 249 years . The central spire collapsed in 1549 and was not rebuilt...

 brought in the English Gothic style, and Norman became increasingly a modest style of provincial building.

Ecclesiastical architecture

  • Oxford Castle
    Oxford Castle
    Oxford Castle is a large, partly ruined Norman medieval castle situated on the west edge of Oxford in Oxfordshire, England. The original moated, wooden motte and bailey castle was replaced with stone in the 11th century and played an important role in the conflict of the Anarchy...

     1074: church tower doubles as a place of refuge
  • St John's Chapel (ca 1087), Tower of London
    Tower of London
    Her Majesty's Royal Palace and Fortress, more commonly known as the Tower of London, is a historic castle on the north bank of the River Thames in central London, England. It lies within the London Borough of Tower Hamlets, separated from the eastern edge of the City of London by the open space...

  • Durham Cathedral
    Durham Cathedral
    The Cathedral Church of Christ, Blessed Mary the Virgin and St Cuthbert of Durham is a cathedral in the city of Durham, England, the seat of the Anglican Bishop of Durham. The Bishopric dates from 995, with the present cathedral being founded in AD 1093...

     (from 1093) was the first to employ a ribbed vault system with pointed arches
  • Winchester Cathedral
    Winchester Cathedral
    Winchester Cathedral at Winchester in Hampshire is one of the largest cathedrals in England, with the longest nave and overall length of any Gothic cathedral in Europe...

     (from 1079)
  • Ely Cathedral
    Ely Cathedral
    Ely Cathedral is the principal church of the Diocese of Ely, in Cambridgeshire, England, and is the seat of the Bishop of Ely and a suffragan bishop, the Bishop of Huntingdon...

     (1083–1109)
  • Peterborough Cathedral
    Peterborough Cathedral
    Peterborough Cathedral, properly the Cathedral Church of St Peter, St Paul and St Andrew – also known as Saint Peter's Cathedral in the United Kingdom – is the seat of the Bishop of Peterborough, dedicated to Saint Peter, Saint Paul and Saint Andrew, whose statues look down from the...

     (from 1118)
  • Kilpeck
    Kilpeck
    Kilpeck is a small village in Herefordshire, England. It is about southwest of Hereford, just south of the A465 road to Abergavenny, and about from the border with Wales....

     Church, Herefordshire
    Herefordshire
    Herefordshire is a historic and ceremonial county in the West Midlands region of England. For Eurostat purposes it is a NUTS 3 region and is one of three counties that comprise the "Herefordshire, Worcestershire and Gloucestershire" NUTS 2 region. It also forms a unitary district known as the...

  • St. Nicholas Church, Pyrford
    Pyrford
    Pyrford is an English village that for centuries had historical links with the monastery of Westminster, in whose possession it remained between the Norman Conquest and the Dissolution of the Monasteries nearly five hundred years later. It is thirty miles by road from central London and situated...

    , Surrey
    Surrey
    Surrey is a county in the South East of England and is one of the Home Counties. The county borders Greater London, Kent, East Sussex, West Sussex, Hampshire and Berkshire. The historic county town is Guildford. Surrey County Council sits at Kingston upon Thames, although this has been part of...

     (c.1140)
  • Southwell Minster
    Southwell Minster
    Southwell Minster is a minster and cathedral, in Southwell, Nottinghamshire, England. It is six miles away from Newark-on-Trent and thirteen miles from Mansfield. It is the seat of the Bishop of Southwell and Nottingham and the Diocese of Southwell and Nottingham.It is considered an outstanding...

  • St. Mary the Virgin, Iffley
    Iffley
    Iffley is a village in Oxfordshire, England, within the boundaries of the city of Oxford, between Cowley and the estates of Rose Hill and Donnington, and in proximity to the River Thames . Its most notable feature is its original and largely unchanged Norman church, St Mary the Virgin, which has a...

    , Oxfordshire (1170)
  • St. Swithun's
    St Swithuns Nately Scures
    St Swithun's Church, Nately Scures is the smallest ancient Church of England parish church in the English county of Hampshire. Newnham and Nately Scures are part of the Anglican United Parish which includes: Greywell, Mapledurwell and Up Nately, which in turn are covenanted with a further seven...

     in Nately Scures, Hampshire (1175), an example of a Norman single-cell apsidal church.
  • Norwich Cathedral
    Norwich Cathedral
    Norwich Cathedral is a cathedral located in Norwich, Norfolk, dedicated to the Holy and Undivided Trinity. Formerly a Catholic church, it has belonged to the Church of England since the English Reformation....

     (1195)


Bibliography
  • Sedding, Edmund H
    Edmund Harold Sedding
    Edmund Harold Sedding was an English architect who practised in Devon and Cornwall. He was the son of Edmund Sedding and the nephew of J. D. Sedding. He was articled to his uncle, and initially employed by him, later setting up his own independent practice in Plymouth in 1891...

    . (1909) Norman Architecture in Cornwall: a handbook to old ecclesiastical architecture. With over 160 plates. London: Ward & Co.

Military architecture

  • White Tower (Tower of London)
    White Tower (Tower of London)
    The White Tower is a central tower, the old keep, at the Tower of London.-History:The castle which later became known as the Tower of London was built by William the Conqueror in 1066. It began as a timber fortification enclosed by a palisade. In the next decade work began on the White Tower, the...

  • Rochester Castle
    Rochester Castle
    Rochester Castle stands on the east bank of the River Medway in Rochester, Kent, England. The 12th-century keep or stone tower, which is the castle's most prominent feature, is one of the best preserved in England or France. Located along the River Medway and Watling Street, Rochester was a...

  • Norwich Castle
    Norwich Castle
    Norwich Castle is a medieval royal fortification in the city of Norwich, in the English county of Norfolk. It was founded in the aftermath of the Norman Conquest of England when William the Conqueror ordered its construction because he wished to have a fortified place in the important city of...


Domestic architecture

  • Jew's House
    Jew's House
    The Jew's House is one of the earliest extant town houses in England. It lies on Steep Hill in Lincoln, immediately below Jew's Court.Dating from the mid-twelfth century, the building originally consisted of a hall at first floor level, measuring approximately 12 by 6 metres, above service and...

    , Lincoln
    Lincoln, Lincolnshire
    Lincoln is a cathedral city and county town of Lincolnshire, England.The non-metropolitan district of Lincoln has a population of 85,595; the 2001 census gave the entire area of Lincoln a population of 120,779....

  • Boothby Pagnell Manor, Lincolnshire
    Lincolnshire
    Lincolnshire is a county in the east of England. It borders Norfolk to the south east, Cambridgeshire to the south, Rutland to the south west, Leicestershire and Nottinghamshire to the west, South Yorkshire to the north west, and the East Riding of Yorkshire to the north. It also borders...

  • Oakham Castle, Rutland
    Rutland
    Rutland is a landlocked county in central England, bounded on the west and north by Leicestershire, northeast by Lincolnshire and southeast by Peterborough and Northamptonshire....

  • Moyse's Hall Museum Bury St Edmunds Suffolk
    Suffolk
    Suffolk is a non-metropolitan county of historic origin in East Anglia, England. It has borders with Norfolk to the north, Cambridgeshire to the west and Essex to the south. The North Sea lies to the east...

     (c.1180)

Norman architecture in Scotland

Scotland
Scotland
Scotland is a country that is part of the United Kingdom. Occupying the northern third of the island of Great Britain, it shares a border with England to the south and is bounded by the North Sea to the east, the Atlantic Ocean to the north and west, and the North Channel and Irish Sea to the...

 also came under early Norman influence, with Norman nobles at the court of King Macbeth
Macbeth of Scotland
Mac Bethad mac Findlaích was King of the Scots from 1040 until his death...

 around 1050. His successor Máel Coluim III
Malcolm III of Scotland
Máel Coluim mac Donnchada , was King of Scots...

 overthrew him with English and Norman assistance, and his queen Margaret
Saint Margaret of Scotland
Saint Margaret of Scotland , also known as Margaret of Wessex and Queen Margaret of Scotland, was an English princess of the House of Wessex. Born in exile in Hungary, she was the sister of Edgar Ætheling, the short-ruling and uncrowned Anglo-Saxon King of England...

 encouraged the church. The Benedictine
Benedictine
Benedictine refers to the spirituality and consecrated life in accordance with the Rule of St Benedict, written by Benedict of Nursia in the sixth century for the cenobitic communities he founded in central Italy. The most notable of these is Monte Cassino, the first monastery founded by Benedict...

 order founded a monastery at Dunfermline
Dunfermline
Dunfermline is a town and former Royal Burgh in Fife, Scotland, on high ground from the northern shore of the Firth of Forth. According to a 2008 estimate, Dunfermline has a population of 46,430, making it the second-biggest settlement in Fife. Part of the town's name comes from the Gaelic word...

. Her fourth son who became King David
David I of Scotland
David I or Dabíd mac Maíl Choluim was a 12th-century ruler who was Prince of the Cumbrians and later King of the Scots...

 built St. Margaret's Chapel
St. Margaret's Chapel
St. Margaret's Chapel, at Edinburgh Castle, is the oldest surviving building in Edinburgh, Scotland. An example of Romanesque architecture, it is a Category A listed building....

 at the start of the 12th century.

Ecclesiastical architecture

  • Dunfermline Abbey
    Dunfermline Abbey
    Dunfermline Abbey is as a Church of Scotland Parish Church located in Dunfermline, Fife, Scotland. In 2002 the congregation had 806 members. The minister is the Reverend Alastair Jessamine...

    , Dunfermline
    Dunfermline
    Dunfermline is a town and former Royal Burgh in Fife, Scotland, on high ground from the northern shore of the Firth of Forth. According to a 2008 estimate, Dunfermline has a population of 46,430, making it the second-biggest settlement in Fife. Part of the town's name comes from the Gaelic word...

     (founded about 1070 by St Margaret
    Saint Margaret of Scotland
    Saint Margaret of Scotland , also known as Margaret of Wessex and Queen Margaret of Scotland, was an English princess of the House of Wessex. Born in exile in Hungary, she was the sister of Edgar Ætheling, the short-ruling and uncrowned Anglo-Saxon King of England...

    )
  • St Andrew Cathedral (from about 1070)
  • St. Margaret's Chapel
    St. Margaret's Chapel
    St. Margaret's Chapel, at Edinburgh Castle, is the oldest surviving building in Edinburgh, Scotland. An example of Romanesque architecture, it is a Category A listed building....

    , Edinburgh Castle
    Edinburgh Castle
    Edinburgh Castle is a fortress which dominates the skyline of the city of Edinburgh, Scotland, from its position atop the volcanic Castle Rock. Human habitation of the site is dated back as far as the 9th century BC, although the nature of early settlement is unclear...

     (early 12th century)
  • Dalmeny
    Dalmeny
    Dalmeny is a suburban village and civil parish in Edinburgh, Scotland. It is located on the south side of the Firth of Forth, east-southeast of South Queensferry and west-northwest of central Edinburgh; it falls under the local governance of the City of Edinburgh Council.The name Dalmeny is...

     parish church (from about 1130)
  • St Magnus Cathedral, Kirkwall
    Kirkwall
    Kirkwall is the biggest town and capital of Orkney, off the coast of northern mainland Scotland. The town is first mentioned in Orkneyinga saga in the year 1046 when it is recorded as the residence of Rögnvald Brusason the Earl of Orkney, who was killed by his uncle Thorfinn the Mighty...

     (from about 1137)
  • Jedburgh Abbey
    Jedburgh Abbey
    Jedburgh Abbey, a ruined Augustinian abbey which was founded in the 12th century is situated in the town of Jedburgh, in the Scottish Borders just north of the border with England at Carter Bar...

    , Jedburgh
    Jedburgh
    Jedburgh is a town and former royal burgh in the Scottish Borders and historically in Roxburghshire.-Location:Jedburgh lies on the Jed Water, a tributary of the River Teviot, it is only ten miles from the border with England and is dominated by the substantial ruins of Jedburgh Abbey...

     (founded about 1138 by David I
    David I of Scotland
    David I or Dabíd mac Maíl Choluim was a 12th-century ruler who was Prince of the Cumbrians and later King of the Scots...

    )
  • St Athernase Church
    St Athernase Church
    St Athernase Church is a Romanesque church located in Leuchars, Fife, United Kingdom. It remains in use as a Church of Scotland parish church and the current minister is the Reverend Caroline Taylor....

    , Leuchars
    Leuchars
    Leuchars is a small town near the north-east coast of Fife in Scotland.The town is nearly to the north of the village of Guardbridge, which lies on the north bank of the River Eden where it widens to the Edenmouth estuary before joining the North Sea at St Andrews Bay. Leuchars is north-east of...

     (12th century)

Norman architecture in Ireland

The Normans first landed in Ireland in 1169. Within five years earthwork castles were springing up, and in a further five, work was beginning on some of the earliest of the great stone castles. For example, Hugh de Lacy
Hugh de Lacy, Lord of Meath
Hugh de Lacy, Lord of Meath was an Anglo-Norman magnate granted the lands of the Kingdom of Meath by Henry II in 1172, during the Norman Invasion of Ireland.-Early life:Hugh de Lacy was born before 1135...

 built a Motte-and-bailey
Motte-and-bailey
A motte-and-bailey is a form of castle, with a wooden or stone keep situated on a raised earthwork called a motte, accompanied by an enclosed courtyard, or bailey, surrounded by a protective ditch and palisade...

 castle on the site of the present day Trim Castle
Trim Castle
Trim Castle , Trim, County Meath, Ireland, on the shores of the Boyne has an area of 30,000 m². It is the remains of Ireland's largest Anglo-Norman castle...

, County Meath
County Meath
County Meath is a county in Ireland. It is part of the Mid-East Region and is also located in the province of Leinster. It is named after the ancient Kingdom of Mide . Meath County Council is the local authority for the county...

, which was attacked and burned in 1173 by the Irish king Ruaidrí Ua Conchobair
Ruaidrí Ua Conchobair
Ruaidrí Ua Conchobair , often anglicised Rory O'Connor, reigned as King of Connacht from 1156 to 1186, and from 1166 to 1198 was the last High King before the Norman invasion of Ireland .Ruaidrí was one of over twenty sons of King...

. De Lacy, however, then constructed a stone castle in its place, which enclosed over three acres within its walls, and this could not be burned down by the Irish. The years between 1177 and 1310 saw the construction of some of the greatest of the Norman castles in Ireland. The Normans settled mostly in an area in the east of Ireland
Ireland
Ireland is an island to the northwest of continental Europe. It is the third-largest island in Europe and the twentieth-largest island on Earth...

, later known as the Pale
The Pale
The Pale or the English Pale , was the part of Ireland that was directly under the control of the English government in the late Middle Ages. It had reduced by the late 15th century to an area along the east coast stretching from Dalkey, south of Dublin, to the garrison town of Dundalk...

, and among other buildings they constructed were Swords Castle
Swords Castle
Swords Castle was built as the manorial residence of the Archbishops of Dublin around 1200 or a little later in Swords, just north of Dublin. It was never strong in the military sense, but covers a large pentagonal walled area of nearly 1.5 acres with a tower on the north, probably the Constable's...

 in Fingal
Fingal
Fingal is a county in Ireland. It is one of three smaller counties into which County Dublin was divided in 1994. With its county seat located in Swords, it has a population of 239,992 according to the 2006 census...

 (North County Dublin), Dublin Castle
Dublin Castle
Dublin Castle off Dame Street, Dublin, Ireland, was until 1922 the fortified seat of British rule in Ireland, and is now a major Irish government complex. Most of it dates from the 18th century, though a castle has stood on the site since the days of King John, the first Lord of Ireland...

 and Carrickfergus Castle
Carrickfergus Castle
Carrickfergus Castle is a Norman castle in Northern Ireland, situated in the town of Carrickfergus in County Antrim, on the northern shore of Belfast Lough. Besieged in turn by the Scots, Irish, English and French, the castle played an important military role until 1928 and remains one of the best...

 in County Antrim
County Antrim
County Antrim is one of six counties that form Northern Ireland, situated in the north-east of the island of Ireland. Adjoined to the north-east shore of Lough Neagh, the county covers an area of 2,844 km², with a population of approximately 616,000...

.

Mezzogiorno

The Normans began constructing castles, their trademark architectural piece, in Italy from an early date. William Iron Arm
William Iron Arm
William Iron Arm was a Norman adventurer, founder of the fortunes of the Hauteville family. One of twelve sons of Tancred of Hauteville, he journeyed to the Mezzogiorno with his younger brother Drogo in the first half of the eleventh century , in response to requests for help made by fellow...

 built one at an unidentified location (Stridula) in Calabria
Calabria
Calabria , in antiquity known as Bruttium, is a region in southern Italy, south of Naples, located at the "toe" of the Italian Peninsula. The capital city of Calabria is Catanzaro....

 in 1045. After the death of Robert Guiscard
Robert Guiscard
Robert d'Hauteville, known as Guiscard, Duke of Apulia and Calabria, from Latin Viscardus and Old French Viscart, often rendered the Resourceful, the Cunning, the Wily, the Fox, or the Weasel was a Norman adventurer conspicuous in the conquest of southern Italy and Sicily...

 in 1085, peninsular southern Italy experienced a series of civil wars and fell under the control of increasingly weaker princes. Revolts characterised the region until well into the twelfth century and minor lords sought to resist ducal or royal power from within their own castles. In the Molise
Molise
Molise is a region of Southern Italy, the second smallest of the regions. It was formerly part of the region of Abruzzi e Molise and now a separate entity...

, the Normanas embarked on their most extensive castle-building programme. There they introduced the opus gallicum
Opus gallicum
The opus gallicum was a technique of construction whereby precise holes were created in stone masonry for the insertion of wooden beams to create a wooden infrastructure...

technique to Italy.

Besides the encastellation
Encastellation
Encastellation is the process whereby the feudal kingdoms of Europe became dotted with castles, from which local lords could dominate the countryside of their fiefs and their neighbours', and from which kings could command even the far-off corners of their realms...

 of the countryside, the Normans erected several religious buildings which still survive. They edified the shrine at Monte Sant'Angelo
Monte Sant'Angelo
Monte Sant'Angelo is a town and comune of Apulia, southern Italy, in the province of Foggia, about 15 km north of Manfredonia by road and 4 km west of Mattinata, on the southern slopes of Monte Gargano.-History:...

 and built a mausoleum
Mausoleum
A mausoleum is an external free-standing building constructed as a monument enclosing the interment space or burial chamber of a deceased person or persons. A monument without the interment is a cenotaph. A mausoleum may be considered a type of tomb or the tomb may be considered to be within the...

 to the Hauteville family
Hauteville family
The family of the Hauteville was a petty baronial Norman family from the Cotentin which rose to prominence in Europe, Asia, and Africa through its conquests in the Mediterranean, especially Southern Italy and Sicily...

 at Venosa
Venosa
Venosa is a town and comune in the province of Potenza, in the Southern Italian region of Basilicata, in the Vulture area. It is bounded by the comuni of Barile, Ginestra, Lavello, Maschito, Montemilone, Palazzo San Gervasio, Rapolla and Spinazzola....

. They also built many new Latin monasteries, including the famous foundation of Sant'Eufemia.

Sicily

Sicily
Sicily
Sicily is a region of Italy, and is the largest island in the Mediterranean Sea. Along with the surrounding minor islands, it constitutes an autonomous region of Italy, the Regione Autonoma Siciliana Sicily has a rich and unique culture, especially with regard to the arts, music, literature,...

's Norman period lasted from circa 1070 until about 1200. The architecture was decorated in gild
Gilding
The term gilding covers a number of decorative techniques for applying fine gold leaf or powder to solid surfaces such as wood, stone, or metal to give a thin coating of gold. A gilded object is described as "gilt"...

ed mosaics such as that at the cathedral at Monreale
Monreale
Monreale is a town and comune in the province of Palermo, in Sicily, Italy, on the slope of Monte Caputo, overlooking the very fertile valley called "La Conca d'oro" , famed for its orange, olive and almond trees, the produce of which is exported in large quantities...

. The Palatine Chapel in Palermo
Palermo
Palermo is a city in Southern Italy, the capital of both the autonomous region of Sicily and the Province of Palermo. The city is noted for its history, culture, architecture and gastronomy, playing an important role throughout much of its existence; it is over 2,700 years old...

 built in 1130 is the perhaps the strongest example of this where the interior of the dome
Dome
A dome is a structural element of architecture that resembles the hollow upper half of a sphere. Dome structures made of various materials have a long architectural lineage extending into prehistory....

 (itself a Byzantine feature) is decorated in mosaic
Mosaic
Mosaic is the art of creating images with an assemblage of small pieces of colored glass, stone, or other materials. It may be a technique of decorative art, an aspect of interior decoration, or of cultural and spiritual significance as in a cathedral...

 depicting Christ Pantocrator accompanied by his angel
Angel
Angels are mythical beings often depicted as messengers of God in the Hebrew and Christian Bibles along with the Quran. The English word angel is derived from the Greek ἄγγελος, a translation of in the Hebrew Bible ; a similar term, ملائكة , is used in the Qur'an...

s.

During Sicily's later Norman era early Gothic influences can de detected such as those in the cathedral at Messina consecrated in 1197. However, here the high Gothic campanile
Campanile
Campanile is an Italian word meaning "bell tower" . The term applies to bell towers which are either part of a larger building or free-standing, although in American English, the latter meaning has become prevalent.The most famous campanile is probably the Leaning Tower of Pisa...

 is of a later date, and should not be confused with the early Gothic built during the Norman period, which featured pointed arches and windows rather than the flying buttress
Flying buttress
A flying buttress is a specific form of buttressing most strongly associated with Gothic church architecture. The purpose of any buttress is to resist the lateral forces pushing a wall outwards by redirecting them to the ground...

es and pinnacle
Pinnacle
A pinnacle is an architectural ornament originally forming the cap or crown of a buttress or small turret, but afterwards used on parapets at the corners of towers and in many other situations. The pinnacle looks like a small spire...

s later to manifest themselves in the Gothic era.
  • Edifices in Palermo
    Palermo
    Palermo is a city in Southern Italy, the capital of both the autonomous region of Sicily and the Province of Palermo. The city is noted for its history, culture, architecture and gastronomy, playing an important role throughout much of its existence; it is over 2,700 years old...

    • Norman palace
      Palazzo dei Normanni
      The Palazzo dei Normanni or Royal Palace of Palermo is a palace in Palermo, Italy. It was the seat of the Kings of Sicily during the Norman domination and served afterwards as the main seat of power for the subsequent rulers of Sicily...

       with its Palatine Chapel
      Cappella Palatina
      The Palatine Chapel is the royal chapel of the Norman kings of Sicily situated on the ground floor at the center of the Palazzo Reale in Palermo, southern Italy....

    • Zisa
      Zisa, Palermo
      The Zisa is a castle in the western part of Palermo, Sicily.The construction was begun in the 12th century by Arabian craftsmen for king William I of Sicily, and completed by his son William II...

    • Cuba
      Cuba, Palermo
      The Cuba is a palace in the Sicilian city of Palermo. It was built in 1180 by William II of Sicily in his great Royal Park, as his personal recreation pavilion, together with an artificial lake: it shows strong Fatimid art influences, as it was designed and decorated by Arab artists still living...

    • Castle of Maredolce
    • Cathedral of Palermo
      Cathedral of Palermo
      The Cathedral of Palermo is an architectural complex in Palermo, Sicily, southern Italy. It is characterized by the presence of different styles, due to a long history of additions, alterations and restorations, the last of which occurred in the 18th century....

    • San Giovanni dei Lebbrosi
    • San Giovanni degli Eremiti
      San Giovanni degli Eremiti
      San Giovanni degli Eremiti is a church in Palermo, southern Italy, near the Palazzo dei Normanni.-History:The church's origins date to the 6th century. Later, after the Islamic conquest of Sicily, it was converted into a mosque...

    • Santa Maria dell'Ammiraglio also known as Martorana
      Martorana
      The Church of Santa Maria dell'Ammiraglio or San Nicolò dei Greci, commonly called the Martorana, overlooking the renowned Piazza Bellini in Palermo, Sicily, southern Italy...

    • San Cataldo
      San Cataldo, Palermo
      The Chiesa di San Cataldo is a church of the Sicilian city of Palermo, on the central Piazza Bellini. It is a notable example of the Arabian - Norman architecture which flourished in Sicily under the Norman domination of the island...

    • Church of the Holy Spirit (Sicily)
      Church of the Holy Spirit (Sicily)
      The church of the Holy Spirit is a Norman church in Palermo, Sicily, southern Italy.The church is located within the boundaries of Sant'Orsola cemetery....

       also known as Chiesa del Vespro
    • Santissima Trinità known as Chiesa della Magione
  • Monreale Cathedral
    Monreale
    Monreale is a town and comune in the province of Palermo, in Sicily, Italy, on the slope of Monte Caputo, overlooking the very fertile valley called "La Conca d'oro" , famed for its orange, olive and almond trees, the produce of which is exported in large quantities...

     and Benedictine
    Benedictine
    Benedictine refers to the spirituality and consecrated life in accordance with the Rule of St Benedict, written by Benedict of Nursia in the sixth century for the cenobitic communities he founded in central Italy. The most notable of these is Monte Cassino, the first monastery founded by Benedict...

     cloister
    Cloister
    A cloister is a rectangular open space surrounded by covered walks or open galleries, with open arcades on the inner side, running along the walls of buildings and forming a quadrangle or garth...

  • Messina Cathedral
  • Cefalù Cathedral
    Cefalù Cathedral
    The Cathedral-Basilica of Cefalù, is a Roman Catholic church in Cefalù, Sicily, southern Italy.The cathedral, dating from 1131, was commenced in the Norman style, the island of Sicily having been conquered by the Normans in 1091...


Malta

After its Norman conquest in 1091, Malta saw the construction of several still-surviving Norman pieces of architecture. Fortresses and houses still exist in Mdina
Mdina
Mdina, Città Vecchia, or Città Notabile, is the old capital of Malta. Mdina is a medieval walled town situated on a hill in the centre of the island. Punic remains uncovered beyond the city’s walls suggest the importance of the general region to Malta’s Phoenician settlers. Mdina is commonly...

 and Vittoriosa.

Gallery

See also

  • English Gothic architecture
    English Gothic architecture
    English Gothic is the name of the architectural style that flourished in England from about 1180 until about 1520.-Introduction:As with the Gothic architecture of other parts of Europe, English Gothic is defined by its pointed arches, vaulted roofs, buttresses, large windows, and spires...

      For Early English, Decorated, and Perpendicular styles.
  • Romanesque architecture
    Romanesque architecture
    Romanesque architecture is an architectural style of Medieval Europe characterised by semi-circular arches. There is no consensus for the beginning date of the Romanesque architecture, with proposals ranging from the 6th to the 10th century. It developed in the 12th century into the Gothic style,...

  • Renaissance architecture
    Renaissance architecture
    Renaissance architecture is the architecture of the period between the early 15th and early 17th centuries in different regions of Europe, demonstrating a conscious revival and development of certain elements of ancient Greek and Roman thought and material culture. Stylistically, Renaissance...


External links

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