“What was a major innovation of the Gothic cathedral? How did the architecture of the cathedral reflect the prevailing idea of God?”
To prevent fires and other wood related problems that might occur, the builders of Gothic cathedrals decided on using stone to forge the ceiling. This resulted in the roof putting unnecessary weight on the walls and it had to be fixed. That is why, they decided to use ‘flying buttresses’.
This helped release the strain on the walls and creates a beautiful design.
The cathedral could present the idea of God a lot in its design. Buildings like the Notre Dame in Paris are extraordinarily tall and cathedrals often have stain glass windows above where the person might usually stand. I think that people believed these qualities in cathedrals helped as sort of a homing beacon for the Holy Spirit. The sheer mass of these buildings could be a reminder that we are small in God’s eyes and yet, he cares so much for us. It could also be an architect’s choice of design but, who knows?
Western Civ 135