Rib vault

ribbed vaultrib-vaultednet vaultribbed vaultingribsribbed vaultscross-ribbed vaultstellar vaultvaultedquadripartite vault
A rib vault is an architectural feature used to cover a large interior space in a building, usually the nave of a church or cathedral, in which the surface of the vault is divided into webs by a framework of diagonal arched ribs.wikipedia
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Gothic architecture

GothicGothic styleLate Gothic
It was a key feature of Gothic architecture.
Its most prominent features included the use of the rib vault and the flying buttress, which allowed the weight of the roof to be counterbalanced by buttresses outside the building, giving greater height and more space for windows.

Sexpartite vault

sexpartitesexpartite vaulting sexpartite
Their form gradually changed from complex sexpartite vault to the simpler but stronger quadripartite vault, allowing the building of much higher cathedrals.
A sexpartite vault, in architecture, is a rib vault divided into six bays by two diagonal ribs and three transverse ribs.

Islamic architecture

IslamicarchitectureArabic
An early version of the rib vault was used in the 8th century in Islamic Architecture, at the Mosque-Cathedral of Cordoba in Moorish Spain, though it was decorative, not bearing the weight of the structure.
The three domes spanning the vaults above the mihrab wall are constructed as ribbed vaults.

Norman architecture

NormanNeo-NormanNorman style
They were also frequently used in later Romanesque and Norman architecture.

Fan vault

fan vaultingfan-vaultedfan-vaulting
By the thirteenth century, they had again become highly ornamental and complex, in such forms as the fan vault.
According to Leedy (1980), the fan vault was developed in England (as opposed to France and other centres of gothic architecture) due to the manner in which English rib vaults were normally constructed.

Vault (architecture)

vaultvaultedvaults
A rib vault is an architectural feature used to cover a large interior space in a building, usually the nave of a church or cathedral, in which the surface of the vault is divided into webs by a framework of diagonal arched ribs.
Sometimes, in the case of comparatively narrow compartments, and more especially in clerestories, the wall rib was stilted, and this caused a peculiar twisting of the web, where the springing of the wall rib is at K: to these twisted surfaces the term ploughshare vaulting is given.

Romanesque architecture

RomanesqueRomanesque styleLate Romanesque
They were also frequently used in later Romanesque and Norman architecture.
Ribbed vaults came into general use in the 12th century.

Groin vault

cross vaultcross-vaultgroin-vaulted
Romanesque churches traditionally covered the nave with a barrel vault, with round arches, or a groin vault, formed when two barrel vaults met at right angles.
It was superseded by the more flexible rib vaults of Gothic architecture in the later Middle Ages.

Durham Cathedral

DurhamCathedralDean and Chapter of Durham
. The earliest of the Gothic rib vaults are generally considered to be in the nave of Durham Cathedral, built between 1093 and 1104.
There is controversy between John James and Malcolm Thurlby on whether these rib vaults were four-part or six-part, which remains unresolved.

Lessay Abbey

Lessay
The Norman-Romanesque Cefalu Cathedral in Sicily, begun in 1131, built after Sicily was conquered by the Normans, featured a similar kind rib vault, as did the Romanesque Lessay Abbey (11th century), in Normandy (destroyed in World War II but rebuilt.
The abbey is one of the most important Norman Romanesque churches as one of the earliest examples of the use of the rib vault in Western churches, that was later a key element of Gothic architecture.

Basilica of Saint-Denis

Basilica of St DenisSaint Denis BasilicaAbbey of Saint-Denis
Most notably, it then appeared in Noyon Cathedral (begun 1131); the square Gothic porch of the Romanesque church of Vézelay Abbey in France (1132); Sens Cathedral (begun 1135); The Choir of the Basilica of Saint-Denis (begun 1140); Notre Dame de Paris (begun 1160); Bourges Cathedral, and Laon Cathedral, It soon appeared in England, where it was used by William of Sens at Canterbury Cathedral, and in St Faith's Chapel in Westminster Abbey (1180)
To achieve his aims, Suger's masons drew on the several new elements which evolved or had been introduced to Romanesque architecture: the pointed arch, the rib vault, the ambulatory with radiating chapels, the clustered columns supporting ribs springing in different directions and the flying buttresses which enabled the insertion of large clerestory windows.

Cefalù Cathedral

Cathedral of CefalùCathedralCefalu Cathedral
The Norman-Romanesque Cefalu Cathedral in Sicily, begun in 1131, built after Sicily was conquered by the Normans, featured a similar kind rib vault, as did the Romanesque Lessay Abbey (11th century), in Normandy (destroyed in World War II but rebuilt.
While parts of the building are barrel-vaulted and parts have an open timber roof, the presbytery has a ribbed vault of stone.

Lierne (vault)

lierne vaultliernetierceron
Another type of rib vault particular to England is the Lierne.
A lierne, in Gothic rib vaulting architecture, is a tertiary rib connecting one rib to another, as opposed to connecting to a springer, or to the central boss.

Chartres Cathedral

Cathedral of ChartresChartrescathedral
A new innovation appeared during the High Gothic: the four-part rib vault, which was used in Chartres Cathedral, Amiens Cathedral and Reims Cathedral.
The arches press against the walls, counterbalancing the outward thrust from the rib vaults over the cathedral interior.

Notre-Dame de Paris

Notre Dame de ParisNotre DameNotre Dame Cathedral
Most notably, it then appeared in Noyon Cathedral (begun 1131); the square Gothic porch of the Romanesque church of Vézelay Abbey in France (1132); Sens Cathedral (begun 1135); The Choir of the Basilica of Saint-Denis (begun 1140); Notre Dame de Paris (begun 1160); Bourges Cathedral, and Laon Cathedral, It soon appeared in England, where it was used by William of Sens at Canterbury Cathedral, and in St Faith's Chapel in Westminster Abbey (1180)
Its pioneering use of the rib vault and flying buttress, its enormous and colourful rose windows, as well as the naturalism and abundance of its sculptural decoration set it apart from the earlier Romanesque style.

Noyon Cathedral

NoyonCathedral of Noyoncathedral at Noyon
Most notably, it then appeared in Noyon Cathedral (begun 1131); the square Gothic porch of the Romanesque church of Vézelay Abbey in France (1132); Sens Cathedral (begun 1135); The Choir of the Basilica of Saint-Denis (begun 1140); Notre Dame de Paris (begun 1160); Bourges Cathedral, and Laon Cathedral, It soon appeared in England, where it was used by William of Sens at Canterbury Cathedral, and in St Faith's Chapel in Westminster Abbey (1180)
The vaulting was originally sexpartite, but were rebuilt after a fire in 1293 in the prevailing quadripartite style.

Beauvais Cathedral

BeauvaisCathedral of BeauvaisCathédrale Saint-Pierre de Beauvais
The tallest nave of all the Gothic Cathedrals is Beauvais Cathedral, though only a single bay was completed.
However, large-scale Gothic design continued, and the choir was rebuilt at the same height, albeit with more columns in the chevet and choir, converting the vaulting from quadripartite vaulting to sexpartite vaulting.

English Gothic architecture

PerpendicularEarly EnglishDecorated
This style was called Perpendicular Gothic.
The barrel vaults and groin vaults characteristic of Romanesque building were replaced by rib vaults, which made possible a wider range of proportions between height, width and length.

Basilica of Sant'Ambrogio

Sant'AmbrogioBasilica di Sant'Ambrogiomonastery of S. Ambrogio
Other variations of ribbed vaults, usually with rounded arches, appeared in Lombardy in Italy, in the Basilica of Sant'Ambrogio, Milan, at the end of the 11th century, and in Southwest France at Moissac Abbey (11th-12th century).
The nave dates to about 1128 and the rib vaults of the nave are from about 1140.

Lincoln Cathedral

LincolnCathedralCathedral of Lincoln
One of the earliest examples of the introduction of the intermediate ridge rib is found in the nave of Lincoln Cathedral; This element, called a ridge rib, was not connected to the walls.
Lincoln Cathedral soon followed other architectural advances of the time — pointed arches, flying buttresses and ribbed vaulting were added to the cathedral.

Keystone (architecture)

keystonekeystoneskeyblocks
When the ribs were all in the place, the keystone was placed at the apex where they converged.
In a rib-vaulted ceiling, keystones commonly mark the intersections of any two or more arched ribs.

Abbey of Saint-Étienne, Caen

Abbaye-aux-HommesAbbey of Saint-ÉtienneAbbaye aux Hommes
Early examples of sexpartite rib vaults are found at the Abbaye-aux-Hommes (begun 1066) and Abbaye-aux-Dames at Caen.
An important feature added to both churches in about 1120 was the ribbed vault, used for the first time in France.

Nave

navessingle-navesanctuary
A rib vault is an architectural feature used to cover a large interior space in a building, usually the nave of a church or cathedral, in which the surface of the vault is divided into webs by a framework of diagonal arched ribs.

Ogive

ogivalpointed archogival arch
The thin stone ribs of the vault meet in a pointed arch, and carry the thrust of the weight of the roof outward and downwards to pillars on the ground floor, and to heavy flying buttresses outside the walls, rather than to the walls themselves.

Flying buttress

flying buttressesbuttressesflying
The thin stone ribs of the vault meet in a pointed arch, and carry the thrust of the weight of the roof outward and downwards to pillars on the ground floor, and to heavy flying buttresses outside the walls, rather than to the walls themselves.