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Kirk Ambrose

Southern-most region of mainland Portugal. Its name is derived from ‘the West’ in Arabic. This region has relatively few medieval buildings: devastating earthquakes in 1722 and 1755 contributed to these losses, though many buildings were deliberately destroyed during the Middle Ages. For example, in the 12th century the Almoravids likely razed a pilgrimage church, described in Arabic sources, at the tip of the cape of S Vicente. Mosques at Faro, Silves and Tavira, among others, appear to have been levelled to make room for church construction after the Reconquest of the region, completed in 1249. Further excavations could shed much light on this history.

Highlights in the Algarve include remains at Milreu of a villa with elaborate mosaics that rank among the most substantial Roman sites in the region. The site further preserves foundations of a basilica, likely constructed in the 5th century, and traces of what may be a baptistery, perhaps added during the period of Byzantine occupation in the 6th and 7th centuries. The period of Islamic rule, from the 8th century through to the 13th, witnessed the construction of many fortifications, including examples at Aljezur, Loulé and Salir, which were mostly levelled by earthquakes. Silves, a city with origins in the Bronze Age, preserves a substantial concentration of relatively well-preserved Islamic monuments. These include a bridge, carved inscriptions, a castle, cistern and fortified walls, along which numerous ceramics have been excavated. Most extant medieval churches in Algarve date to the period after the Reconquest. These tend to be modest in design and small in scale, such as the 13th-century Vera Cruz de Marmelar, built over Visigothic or Mozarabic foundations. The relatively large cathedrals at Silves and at Faro preserve substantial portions dating to the 13th century, as well as fabric from subsequent medieval campaigns. Renaissance and Baroque churches and ecclesiastical furnishings can be found throughout Algarve....


P. Cornelius Claussen

(fl second half of the 12th century).

Italian architect and sculptor. He was probably a member of the Paulus family of Roman marble workers (see Cosmati) and a son of Angelo de Paolo. His authenticated work lies partly outside the traditional marble-working fields of furnishing and decorating church interiors and includes building. The tower doorway of Gaeta Cathedral, Lazio, bears his signature on the keystone, set on either side of a relief of a flying eagle, the symbol of St John the Evangelist. The monumental architecture of the entrance arch is articulated by rich columns and capitals, retrieved from an earlier building; its details show familiarity both with the Antique and with contemporary Campanian sculpture. The tower was begun after 1148, and probably even after 1160.

There is evidence from drawings (e.g. G. Ciampini: De sacris aedificiis, Rome, 1693) that Nicolaus de Angelo signed the portico (destr. 1732) that once stood against the main façade of ...


Christine Verzar

(fl 1178–1233).

Italian sculptor and architect. After Wiligelmo and Nicholaus, Antelami was the last of the great northern Italian sculptors working in the cities of the central Po Valley in the 12th century. Although he is referred to in the inscriptions as a sculptor, it is probable that he was also an architect, and that he belonged originally, as his name implies, to the guild of civic builders known as the ‘Magistri Antelami’, active in the region of Como. He worked mainly in Parma and its surroundings, although his influence was widespread.

His earliest recorded commission is the signed and dated Deposition relief (1178), now set in the south transept of Parma Cathedral, which may originally have formed part of a choir-screen. Other fragments (a badly preserved relief showing Christ in Majesty, several capitals, atlantes and column-supporting lions) are located in the cathedral and in the Galleria Nazionale, Parma. The ...


Sophie Page

Astrology is the art of predicting events on earth as well as human character and disposition from the movements of the planets and fixed stars. Medieval astrology encompassed both general concepts of celestial influence, and the technical art of making predictions with horoscopes, symbolic maps of the heavens at particular moments and places constructed from astronomical information. The scientific foundations of the art were developed in ancient Greece, largely lost in early medieval Europe and recovered by the Latin West from Arabic sources in the 12th and 13th centuries. Late medieval astrological images were successfully Christianized and were adapted to particular contexts, acquired local meanings and changed over time.

Astrology developed into a scientific branch of learning in ancient Greece, but because of the opposition of the Church Fathers it was transmitted to early medieval Europe in only fragmentary form in technically unsophisticated textbooks and popular divinatory genres. Literary and scientific texts provided more general ideas about the nature and attributes of the planets which were influential on later iconography. The first significant astrological images appear in 11th-century illustrated astronomical texts (e.g. London, BL, Cotton MS. Tiberius BV), which were acquired and produced by monasteries to aid with time-keeping and the construction of the Christian calendar....


Paul Williamson

(fl 1195–1201).

Italian sculptor and architect. He is first recorded in an inscription of 1195 set to the right of the main portal of S Silvestro, Bevagna (Umbria). With Rodulfus he signed the portal on the more important church of S Michele in the same square in Bevagna, but the inscription is undated. The portals on both churches have an archivolt with rich foliate decoration, but that at S Michele is further enriched by an inlaid marble guilloche on the outer order and large impost blocks bearing reliefs of flying angels. The portal of the north façade of Foligno Cathedral, which is dated 1201, is still more refined and is again signed by both Binellus and Rodulfus, the last work that can be firmly associated with these sculptors. The portal bears foliate decoration on the archivolt and an inlaid marble motif on the outer order, but it is also decorated with couchant lions at the base of each column, beautifully carved inhabited scroll-work on the jambs and an inner archivolt with panels bearing the Signs of the Zodiac on the outer face and Symbols of the Evangelists, carved almost in the round, projecting from the soffit; reliefs of the Holy Roman Emperor Frederick I (‘Barbarossa’) and Bishop Anselm are set on the inner face of the doorposts. The intricately rendered foliate and figurative relief-carving on these portals seems to be derived from such Umbrian sources as the leaf-carving on the portals of S Salvatore, Spoleto, while the inlaid marble patterns are characteristic of Roman marble-work (...


Rossella Caruso

[Boschetto; Busketus]

(fl Pisa, c. 1064–1110).

Italian architect. According to the inscription on his tomb (now set in the northernmost arch of the cathedral façade), he was responsible for the construction of Pisa Cathedral. The verses celebrate his art and technical ability, comparing them with those of the mythical Ulysses and Daedalus, and praise the expertise with which he organized the dangerous transport of the enormous columns by sea and by land, avoiding hostile ambushes and using machines of his own invention that could even be operated by two young girls.

Two documents, dated 1104 and 1110, mention Buschetto as one of the Operai (administrators) of Pisa Cathedral. He is considered responsible for its original plan, however, and he must have been active by 1064, when construction work began. The cathedral shows at least two building phases. The eastern sections of the building are built mainly of dark marble, but the walls to the west of the breaks are largely of white stone. Since Buschetto’s epigraph refers to a ‘temple of white marble’, at least some of these walls must have been executed under his direction. He was therefore probably responsible for the modification of the west end and the widening of the new façade, which was executed by ...


Roberto Coroneo

Term coined by critics in the 19th century to designate a group of sculptors and architects who were active in northern Italy and elsewhere from the mid-12th century to the late 14th; the name derives from their place of origin, Campione (Campigliono) di Lugano, which in documents often appears after their baptismal names. Some of the masters were related. A distinctive style, marked by solid forms and a robust realism, becomes apparent only in the second half of the 12th century and the first half of the 13th; later it merges with the more general manner of north Italian sculptors and builders from Arogno, Bissone, and other places between Lake Como and Lake Lugano.

The earliest document mentioning the masters from Campione is a contract dated 30 November 1244 between Ubaldino, Director (Massaro) of the Cathedral Works of Modena from 1230 to 1263, and Enrico di Ottavio da Campione, who undertook, on behalf of himself and his heirs, to work for the cathedral ...


Alison Manges Nogueira

Monumental, marble paschal Candlestick of the late 12th to early 13th century with reliefs signed by Nicolaus de Angelo and Vassallettus now in S Paolo fuori le Mura, Rome. The imposing column (h. 5.6 m), adorned with six registers of reliefs and surmounted by a fluted candle holder, rests upon a base of sculpted lions, sphinxes, rams and female figures. The upper and lower reliefs bear vegetal and ornamental patterns while the three central registers portray Christ before Caiaphas, the Mocking of Christ, Christ before Pilate, Pilate Washing his Hands, the Crucifixion, the Resurrection and the Ascension. The culminating Easter scenes reflect the paschal candle’s function during the Easter season as a symbol of Christ resurrected, as evoked in an inscription on the base. A second fragmentary inscription refers to the unidentifiable patron’s desire for commemoration. A third inscription identifies Nicolaus de Angelo as the master sculptor and Petrus Vassallettus as playing a secondary role. Both were active in the second half of the 12th to the early 13th century and came from leading families of Roman sculptors: the Vassalletti and Cosmati (Nicolaus’s family). The candlestick is the only work signed by and securely attributed to Nicolaus and the scope of his contribution remains uncertain. A plausible theory attributes the base and first register to Petrus, based upon similarities to works signed by him and ascribed to his family, such as the cloister of S Giovanni in Laterano in Rome and the narthex of S Lorenzo fuori le Mura in Rome. Nicolaus probably executed the Christological scenes, distinguishable for their more dynamic, expressive figures and decorative chisel work, and appropriate for the master sculptor because of their centrality and significance. Early Christian sarcophagi and Carolingian ivories may have provided models for the figural types. This form of paschal candlestick was probably inspired by Roman columnar monuments carved with triumphal scenes....


L. A. S. Butler

(b ?1080–90; d Clairvaux, 1140).

French monk and architect. His reputation as an architect rests on three contemporary records. They show him to be a senior and trusted member of the Clairvaux community of Cistercian monks who had been at the abbey since its early days (see Clairvaux Abbey). In his role as a companion of St Bernard he was given responsibility for assisting new houses to establish themselves in the Cistercian way of life (see Bernard of Clairvaux). The clearest information comes from Fountains Abbey, N. Yorks, to which Geoffroi was sent in 1133 to instruct the monks (none of whom had spent any time within a Cistercian house) in the customs of the Order, its way of life, and disciplined attitude to monastic affairs. Serlo, then of Fountains, stated that Geoffroi had performed this task on many occasions: ‘he was skilled in ordering and establishing new houses’ (see Walbran). Part of these duties included the physical aspects of laying out the buildings, deciding on their disposition, and determining their dimensions, whether in timber as at Fountains or in stone as at Clairvaux. The confidence that Bernard placed in Geoffroi is indicated in his letter to Abbot Richard: ‘All the matters I have no time to write about I leave to Geoffroi; he will deal verbally with the rest’. When the instruction at Fountains was completed, Geoffroi left behind him a group of monks well able to continue the Cistercian tradition. Adam of Meaux, Robert of Newminster, and Alexander of Kirkstall were all monastic founders and, inevitably, builders....


Rossella Caruso

(fl Pisa, 1152).

Italian architect. The name appears in three inscriptions: one on a pilaster in the baptistery at Pisa (‘deotisalvi magister huius operis’), one on the campanile of S Sepolcro, Pisa, and one on the inside north wall of S Cristoforo, Lucca. The last is generally attributed to a different craftsman of the same name.

At the Pisa Baptistery (see), begun in 1152, Diotisalvi presumably worked on the planning, on the execution of the lower storey of the exterior and, inside, on the erection of the monumental granite columns from Elba and Sardinia and of the piers (excluding the capitals). The centralized design is based on the rotunda of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem, which may suggest that Diotisalvi’s original scheme included the arcaded gallery and truncated conical roof. The signed inscription on the campanile of the Pisan church of S Sepolcro probably refers to the whole church. This is characterized by a similar centralized plan with a cupola, but it is smaller than the baptistery. The original octagonal structure—with eight tall pilasters, pointed arches and a dome raised on a drum—has, however, been much altered and restored....


Danielle B. Joyner

From the time John Cassian established the first female foundation in Marseille in ad 410, monastic women lived in varying states of enclosure and were surrounded by diverse images and objects that contributed to their devotion, education and livelihood. The first rule for women, written in 512 by St Caesarius of Arles, emphasized their strict separation from men and the world, as did the Periculoso, a directive issued by Pope Boniface VIII (reg 1294–1303) in 1298. Various architectural solutions developed throughout the Middle Ages to reconcile the necessities of enclosure with the access required by male clerics to celebrate Mass and provide pastoral care. Nuns’ choirs, where the women would gather for their daily prayers, were often constructed as discreet spaces in the church, which allowed women to hear or see the Mass without interacting with the cleric, as in the 10th-century choir in the eastern transept gallery at St Cyriakus in Gernrode, Germany. In some Cistercian examples, the nuns’ choir appeared at the west end of the nave. Dominican and Franciscan architecture was largely varied. Double monasteries, which housed men and women, also required careful construction. A 7th-century text describing the church of St Brigida in ...


Stephen T. Driscoll

Scottish royal centre in Perthshire, which reached its zenith in the late Pictish period (8th–9th centuries ad) and is the source of an assemblage of high quality ecclesiastical sculpture. Occupying the fertile heart of Strathearn, Forteviot has been more or less in continuous use as a ceremonial centre since the 3rd millennium bc and is the focus of élite burials from the Early Bronze Age (c. 1900 bc) through to the Pictish era. Cinead mac Alpín (Kenneth mac Alpine), the king traditionally identified with the foundation of the Gaelic kingdom of the Scots, died at the palacium (palace) of Forteviot in ad 858. It was eclipsed as a royal centre by Scone in ad 906, but remained a significant royal estate until the 13th century.

The only surviving fabric of the palace is a unique monolithic arch, presumably a chancel arch, carved with three moustached Picts in classical dress flanking a crucifix (now in the Royal Museum of Scotland, Edinburgh). Fragments of at least four additional sandstone crosses indicate the presence of a major church, perhaps a monastery. The celebrated Dupplin Cross (now in Dunning Church) originally overlooked Forteviot from the north. This monolithic, free-standing cross (2.5 m tall) bears a Latin inscription naming Constantine son of Fergus, King of the Picts (...



Daniel Rico

Spanish provincial capital, to the north of Saragossa in Aragón. Known in pre-Roman Iberia as Bolskan and as Osca under the Romans, it was the seat of the Quintus Sertorius government, a municipium (free town) since the time of Augustus and a bishopric under the Visigoths. During the period of Muslim domination from the 8th to the 11th centuries, the town, known as Wasqa, became a defensive settlement with a city wall stretching for more than 1.8 km, of which some sections still remain. Although the city was recovered by the Christians in 1096 and the episcopal see restored the following year, the architectural transformation of Huesca was not immediate. During the 12th century only two edifices of any real importance were constructed. One of these was the Benedictine monastery of S Pedro el Viejo, of which three Romanesque structures have survived: the church—a simple construction which nevertheless has two interesting tympana carved by sculptors from Jaca; a small chapel, possibly inherited from the Mozarab community in the 11th century, which was used as the Chapter House and then as a funeral chapel; and a cloister decorated around ...



Harriet Sonne de Torrens

Mainland peninsula of modern-day Denmark and one of the three provinces (Jutland, Zealand and Skåne, southern Sweden) that constituted medieval Denmark. The conversion of the Danes to Christianity initiated a reorganization of the economic, social and legal structures of Denmark that would change the shape of Jutland dramatically between the 11th and 14th centuries. Under Knut the Great, King of Denmark and England (reg 1019–35), Jutland acquired a stable diocesan system (1060) that enabled a systematic collection of tithes and the growth of religious institutions between 1050 and 1250. During this period, agricultural practices changed as manor houses and landed estates were established, producing wealth for the ruling families. Under Valdemar I (reg 1157–82) and Knut VI (reg 1182–1202), Jutland witnessed a great building activity; on Jutland more than 700 stone churches were constructed, some replacing earlier wooden churches, each needing liturgical furnishings. Workshops, such as that of the renowned sculptor Horder and many others, were actively engaged in carving stone baptismal fonts (e.g. Malt, Skodborg, Ut, Stenild), capitals, reliefs (Vestervig, Aalborg) and tympana (Gjøl, Ørsted, Stjaer, Skibet), wooden cult figures, Jutland’s golden altars (Lisbjerg, Sahl, Stadil, Tamdrup) and wall paintings. Evidence of the earliest wall paintings in Jutland, ...


Joan Duran-Porta

[ Raimundus Lambardus ; Raimon de Nargó ]

( fl Urgell, Catalonia, 1174–87 d before 1195).

Catalan master builder. The epithet Lambard has led to the assumption that he was an Italian master, whereas the use of this demonym for masons and builders is well established in the late Middle Ages in Catalonia. Raimon was hired in 1175 to complete the construction of the Romanesque Cathedral of S Maria at La Seu d’Urgell, which had been halted (or slowed down) for some time. His contract, preserved in a 13th-century copy, reveals an urgency to finish the upper parts of the church, which were an essential bulwark for the defence of the city in times of trouble between the bishop and neighbouring nobility. He was commissioned not only to direct the architectural works but also as the operarius or financial manager of the cathedral opera (the chapterhouse institution in charge of all the remodelling and building projects). It was quite exceptional for a layman to be in a role traditionally reserved for a canon, and even if the election of Raimon is related to the urgency of the works, it also proves that he was a reliable person in the eyes of the canons, one of whom was probably his relative (perhaps a brother), Pere de Nargó....


Lia Di Giacomo

(fl 1099–1137).

Italian architect. He was probably born in Lombardy. Some scholars have attempted to identify him with a Comacine master, Lanfranco da Ligorno, who worked on the cloister of the Benedictine monastery of Voltorre, near Varese, but such a hypothesis is unfounded.

Lanfranco’s only definitely attributable work is Modena Cathedral, which he was commissioned to build in 1099. Sources for his involvement are an inscription built into the wall outside the main apse of the cathedral and the Relatio translationis corporis Sancti Geminiani, a contemporary account of the first phase of the building of the cathedral (1099–1106), kept in the Archivio Capitolare of Modena. The carving of the inscription was ordered at the beginning of the 13th century by Bozzalino, the administrator of the cathedral. It was probably copied from an earlier, lost inscription, or from a manuscript. It refers either to 1106, when the body of St Geminianus was removed from the old to the new cathedral, or to ...


P. Cornelius Claussen

Italian family of marble-workers, sculptors and architects. Four generations of the family are known from 22 signed inscriptions. Between 1162 and 1254 they ran the most prolific marble workshop in Rome; more than a quarter of all the surviving signed works by the medieval Roman marble workers known as the Cosmati were produced by the Laurentius family alone. The father often worked with his sons and signed his name with theirs, so that the genealogy of named members of the family is certain. Two members of the family, Jacobus Laurentii and his grandson Lucas Cosmati, held honorary posts at the papal court, which would suggest that they were held in high esteem by both citizens and curia. The principal surviving work by the family is Cività Castellana Cathedral, Lazio, in which the names of all four generations of the family are recorded in inscriptions. The portico dated 1210 and signed by Jacobus Laurentii and his son ...



S. Moralejo

(fl 1168–?1217).

Spanish architect and possible sculptor. He was Master of the Works of the cathedral of Santiago de Compostela, and he was granted a life pension in connection with this work by Ferdinand II of León in 1168. His name also appears in the inscription on the lintels of the Pórtico de la Gloria, installed on 1 April 1188, attributing to him the direction of building work. Other possible references to him occur in documents from 1189 to 1217.

Although Mateo is known in the art-historical literature primarily as a sculptor, the inscription refers to him in the capacity of an architect. This activity was not restricted to the portal and the façade of which it is a part, however, but may also have included the completion of the cathedral itself. As a whole, except for those details where the design conforms to what had already been built, the architecture of this campaign reveals the influence of Burgundian buildings. The sculptural decoration, however, is less unified: initially it shows links with Burgundian work (La Charité-sur-Loire, Avallon) but then a second, more varied style appears, which has been attributed to Mateo himself. It would be more accurate, however, to attribute the architecture to him, because it is more homogeneous than the sculpture, and Mateo was the master responsible for the work from its inception. Mateo’s intervention in the sculptural programme should not be excluded, however, and he may even have contributed designs. The distinction of being included in the dedicatory inscription of a royal endowment, without mentioning the names of the patrons, would be unusual at this period for a supposedly manual worker. To his work as an architect, Mateo probably also added that of ...


Louis I. Hamilton

(b Bieda, nr Ravenna, c. 1050/55; reg 1099–1118; d Rome, Jan 21, 1118).

Italian pope and patron. Paschal is often considered a weak successor to popes Gregory VII (reg 1073–85) and Urban II (reg 1088–99), and his contributions have been overshadowed by the ‘Privelegium’ dispute with the Emperor Henry V in 1111. He has come to be appreciated as a formidable pope in the tradition of Urban II for his effective use of papal itinerary, pontifical liturgy, church consecrations and an increasingly coherent set of ‘Gregorian’ liturgical commentaries. He dedicated twenty-six churches during his papacy; that seven of those were after 1111 bespeaks his ability to resecure his authority (Hamilton, 2010). The influence of reforming ideals and the use of church architecture and art to promote those ideals has been studied for both churches that he dedicated (as diverse as San Vincenzo al Volturno, S Geminiano in Modena (see Modena §1 and St Bénigne in Dijon (see Dijon §IV 2....


Alison Stones

French town in the Dordogne that grew up on the site of Roman Vesunna. Roman remains include the arena, temple and villa, the latter now the site of a museum of Roman art designed by Jean Nouvel. Several medieval houses preserve fragments of 13th-century wall paintings. The former medieval cathedral dedicated to St Etienne is located between the temple and arena and preserves several bays of its early 12th-century choir with a flat east end vaulted with domes on pendentives. Similar domes are found at the 12th-century abbey church of St Front, originally outside the walls and since 1669 the cathedral. St Front has a Greek-cross plan like that of the Holy Apostles (destr.) in Constantinople and St Mark’s in Venice. It was restored by Paul Abadie, architect of Sacré-Coeur, Paris, who endowed both buildings with ‘pepper-pot’ turrets. Fragments of early 12th-century sculpture from St Front survive at the Musée du Périgord in Périgueux, some from the tomb of St Fronto described in the mid-12th-century Pilgrims Guide to Santiago de Compostela, where it is claimed that Fronto was sent to Périgueux by St Peter. Other medieval holdings in the museum include the Diptych of Rabastens (Tarn), the founding charter of the Confraternity of the Assumption, containing the names of the founding members beneath scenes of the ...