Since ages, the architecture and history have been exemplifying the cultural heritage and glory of the bygone times. The unique and imperial style of architecture, the elaborate and intricate carvings and patterns or the inscriptions, every form of art reflects the political power, religious significance, rich craftsmanship and sophisticated knowledge of the era.
The history of a place has always fascinated us, astonished us and infused a sense of respect for the culture and heritage of the place. Join us as we walk back in time to explore and learn more about these wonderful architectures and feed our curiosities.
Architectural Design Styles of Historical Monuments and Famous Landmarks
Every history buff ever has for sure been intrigued by the ruins of Acropolis in Athens. The ancient citadel atop a hill overlooking the city of Athens is almost in ruins, yet one cannot stop wondering at the sheer magnificence of the architecture.
Greek architecture used post-and-lintel building techniques which made use of large upright columns. One other major development in Greek era is the majestic theatres like the ‘Theatre of Dionysus’ in Athens Acropolis and the Epidaurus theatre in Argolis region of Athens. Major traces of Greek architecture could be found in Greece as well as in some part of Italy.
Have you been to Rome and been gobsmacked by the grandeur and history of bloodshed in the Colosseum. The Colosseum or Coliseum, the largest amphitheater in Rome, Italy is a significant example of Roman architecture.
The Roman architecture has been largely influenced by the aspects of Ancient Greek architecture. Rome is a historically rich city brimming with numerous monuments and buildings of Roman architecture epitomizing its splendid cultural past. We were surprised to see a hotel by the name ‘The Dome’ in Edinburgh built in Roman architectural style.
India is a land of great history and incredibly rich culture and heritage. One of the wonders we visited recently was the Badami Cave temples in Karnataka state of south India.
Rock-cut architecture is an art of excavating solid rock to form structures and sculptures which are entirely man-made. This kind of architecture could be traced back to ancient times when the Buddhist monks carved out caves in mountains for living and religious purposes. The popular and prominent examples of this architecture are temples in India and the cave dwellings of Cappadocia in Turkey.
During our visit to German city of Cologne last year we were awe-struck by the imposing architecture of the Cologne Cathedral with its two spires dominating the city skyline. The massive cathedral built in gothic style is Germany’s most visited landmark, attracting an average of 20,000 people a day.
Gothic architecture is a style of architecture that flourished during the late medieval period. The Gothic art style is characterized by the use of pointed arches, vaults, flying buttresses, remarkable stained-glass windows and ornate tracery.
Gothic architecture can be seen in many of the cathedrals and churches of Europe, for example, the Salisbury Cathedral a popular day trip from London in England. St. Patrick’s Cathedral in New York is also one of the excellent exemplars of gothic architecture.
Gothic Revival or Victorian Gothic or Neo-Gothic
In the early 19th century when neoclassical style buildings were in a boom the patrons of gothic style started to revive the medieval Gothic architecture giving birth to the Gothic Revival or Neo-Gothic architectural style. One can find many prominent features of original Gothic style in Neo-Gothic like pointed arches, finials, stained glass windows and spires incorporating the contemporary architecture methods.
One of our favorite example of Gothic Revival architecture is the Hungarian Parliament building located in the beautiful city of Budapest. Some traces of Revival Gothic architecture can be found in India as well in Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus railway station a fine example of a rich heritage of Mumbai and famous St. Philomena’s Church in Mysore.
Renaissance which means ‘Rebirth’ was the revival of ancient Greek and Roman architecture from 14th and 17th centuries. Renaissance architecture was inspired by Gothic architecture and was succeeded by Baroque architecture. First found in Florence, Italy the Renaissance style then spread to other parts of Europe.
Renaissance style places emphasis on symmetry, proportion, and geometry. The 16th century Antwerp City Hall built in the Flemish Renaissance style, Flinders Street railway station built in French Renaissance Architecture and the Church of San Giorgio Maggiore a 16th-century Benedictine church in the romantic city of Venice, northern Italy is remarkable examples.
The UNESCO’s World Heritage site of Palace of Versailles one of the best day trips from Paris with impeccable artwork and lavishly decorated rooms are sure to leave an indelible mark on one’s mind. The opulent Palace in France is one of the grandest palaces and a fine example of Baroque architecture.
The Baroque architecture is characterized by detailed and elaborate design and artwork, extravagantly colorful and ornate interiors with extensively decorated frescoes. Baroque architecture evolved in Europe from 16th to the 18th century. Early Baroque started in Italy and later Baroque usually referred to as Late Baroque or Rococo was seen in France. The grand St. Peter’s Square in Vatican City and St. John’s Co-Cathedral of Valletta in Malta are other impressive structures of the Baroque era.
There possibly isn’t anyone who is not spellbound by the magic emanated by the heavenly Taj Mahal one of the best places to visit in India. The radiance permeating through the aura engulfs its visitors with its pristine charm.
Mughal architecture is an architectural style developed by the Mughals during their reign in medieval India. The 16th, 17th and 18th centuries have seen a major rise of structures of Mughal influence which is a blend of Islamic, Persian, Turkic and Indian architecture. Large domes, slender minarets, and large halls are major features of Mughal Architecture. Examples of the style can be found in majorly in south Asian countries. Jama Masjid and the Red Fort, the top tourist places in Delhi the capital city of India and the Shalimar Gardens in Pakistan are some of the famous Mughal structures.
Neoclassical architecture is the revival of the simple classic forms of Roman and Greek architecture. Massive buildings with free-standing columns and elegant details are characteristics of this architecture. Rotunda of Mosta in Malta, White House in the US and Arc de Triomphe of Paris, the ‘City of Love’ are prominent examples of this architecture
Have you been intrigued by the history and architecture of the places you visit? Which is your favorite architecture?
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