WHAT’S THE DIFFERENCE? Both are styles of medieval architecture that you associate with churches
ROMANESQUE Romanesque architecture combined the influences of Roman and Byzantine styles. In fact, the architecture got its name in the 1800s because one of its key features, the barrel vault, bore such a resemblance to the classical Roman arch. The use of barrel vaults thus allowed for huge interior spaces built entirely of stone. But that also meant the roofs were extremely heavy, so the walls had to be tremendously thick to prevent buckling. Strong walls also meant fewer windows, so the insides of Romanesque churches often look dim and feel like fortresses.
GOTHIC Gothic architecture the style was born in the mid-12th century with the intention of making churches look like heaven: soaring, colorful, and bright. The biggest difference in Gothic style was the use of flying buttresses. These support structures or towers, set off from the main walls and attached by arches, displaced the pressure from the roof outward. Essentially, this meant the buildings could get taller, walls could get thinner, and there could be a lot of stained-glass windows. Gothic churches sport huge, ornate, detailed round masterpieces called rose windows.
Separate Compartments Unified, unbroken space RADIATING CHAPELS &APSE Romanesque Gothic
Mostly barrel-vaults, some groin-vaults Groin-vaulted or Ribbed-vaulted Cathedrals VAULT Romanesque Gothic