Why do medieval buildings overhang their lower floors?May 09, 2020
these qualifications I am Chad and if you have ever seen a
medievalstyle architecture, be it in a documentary, a movie, a tv show, whatever, you have probably noticed something very peculiar and distinct about them and that is on any floor above the first. floor, usually the second floor and either one and you can go up continuously, you know that the floor above the ground floor extends a little more than the line of the wall below it, so the walls on the higher
floorstowards up they spread out and then sometimes it goes up again and they spread out again.
I'm sure you've seen this before. It is a very distinctive feature and style of
medievalarchitecture. Well, if you've seen it, have you ever wondered why? the
buildingsbuilt like this well i am here to help you with that question because in this video i will tell you why and also you can guess what has a correct name this style in medieval architecture is really on any building b ut it is more prominent in medieval architecture it's called getiing now the thing about jelly is that it applies more to wooden architecture but there's a very comparable design style in stone architecture now i haven't been out to confirm if it's called jelly when it's done in stone but it's also done in medieval castles and this has been in a lot of my castle videos because the reason it's done in castles is somewhat different, sometimes the same as the reason it's done in wooden buildings so let's get into the reasons first I'll cover wooden cabins and stuff and then we'll get to stone for castle castles and stuff the first t Type of obvious reason why Jed eing was done in medieval buildings and stuff was that it offers more space on the upper
floorsnow this is important when the building footprint was restricted in terms of space if it was really close to other buildings it was in a built up area but we In terms of buildings there is always space in front of them because the door needs space to open and they usually open onto a street and so if you have restricted space as soon as you build one floor can extend the second floor faced the street a bit and this was done very often in medieval cities, it's interesting to make a side note about medieval cities before transportation became widely accessible for large numbers of people , the main way they got around was walking now that you have an area where there are a lot of people crowded together this can let you know it creates problems regarding making people livable because everything they would need to live should be within walking distance and thus bringing people closer to the things they need and the things they need to be close to people they crowd people as close together as possible which reduces the walking distance they have to travel to get to the essential nec number of life and that's why medieval cities and things like that are often very cramped because remember if you don't build , you have to build which increases the walking distance between the things you need but yeah building there is a big take advantage and then if you have a restricted space between everything yes if it goes up and extends towards the street and then every floor goes up above that, you can get additional floor space that you were initially allocated or allowed to get away with based on the actual footprint of the building itself, the part where this answer doesn't make much sense is when you know s areas where the footprint was not restricted, such as in more rural rural areas, so why would you make
theirhouse bigger? whatever you want, you know about the foundations, so why did you make it small or have the size and then deliberately go for something bigger?
Another possible reason is that any type of building when going when you are building it on the ground needs a support, usually with stumps, depending on the type of architecture being built, therefore the larger the footprint that is doing, the more Stubbs you need, which creates a more complicated process, because you ever try to put in the stumps and it's not too difficult, but it's not easy either, but in any respect, it saves work and effort by making the
lowerlevel as big as it needs to be and then when you get to the next floor you get more space. at the top, another way that stone buildings were often made in the medieval period is that the bottom story actually had no floor, instead there was a stone framework of the external walls which would later support the main habitable part which would be would be the floor so the bottom level would be a place to store things animals would also live there and as I mentioned the top floor would be where people would live this would offer a couple of advantages one of the main one being that there is no need to put any part of the wood on the ground because wood that is not treated properly and of course in the medieval period that was just war timur when exposed to constant moisture will rot after a couple of years easily enough so when you had wooden buildings built on wooden stumps they didn't last very long because of that so stone foundations were always better and not having a floor close to the ground you can avoid the need to have to lose the bumps that hold it up and therefore avoid the problem of decay, sometimes there were flats on the
lowerlevels, don't get me wrong, but the ones that lasted the longest would be the ones that actually they are built on a proper stone foundation so it would be better for them, having stone floors in this case on the lower level now that stone is more expensive meant having a larger footprint on the lower level would cost more a field of golf, so it would be as big as you could afford, but you Amber is much more plentiful and cheaper as soon as you get to the next floor, so you can't go full of wood and not risk any of the trouble of rot with wood close to the ground, you can make a much larger floor plan. than the one below so the timber frames would be separated in extent from the stone walls below and this is again a very common feature with these types of buildings where your first floor of these buildings not always but the first floor of these buildings would be made of stone and the second and upper floors would be half-timbered, the other possible reason and explanation why jetting was developed in this period was a kind of architectural advantage you see when you have a large amount of rafters going through you know the ceiling between the two walls is ok well that wood will want to sag weight gravity ok basic physics so the way you can prevent this sagging is by putting a counterweight on the other end , but if the wood is just sitting on the wall itself, there is no room to put a counterweight on it, but if you spread that beam well over the wall it now rests on, there will be weight as it pushes h down in the middle which could cause it to sag but then if you put a weight in the far end pit that creates a counter force that can work against the weight of it but also the floor you put on top of it and then anything you put on top of that pit furniture and people walk on it this can create a more stable structure and flooring for the upper levels in general and of course the other possible reason is it just looks nice it's ok it's really interesting how we humans determine what is visually pleasing to the eye and not and we really didn't like a certain level of complexity and sophistication as long as it's an innocent balanced kind of symmetry that will create beauty for us so just seeing a flat wall is not that interesting g but having that little difference where it's in the middle and then you have the extension and then you have the joist that holds it up or even the corbels if it's a stone material like that , it makes for a much more interesting sight visually than it was before so yeah they could have done it again for the reasons i mentioned and because it looked cool and the funny thing is i loved how it looks since i first swore medieval cabins or this style of architecture i thought it looks brilliant combined with the other styles too specifically the wood framing and how it has the whitewashing you know the door and the whitewashing in the middle that looks great so why this jet apparently doubled down on stone architecture specifically castles well first of all anyone who If you are familiar with my channel and enjoy watching my castle videos you already know the answer to this so please bear with me as I explain to the professionals.
You probably don't know the answer, first of all it's a defensive feature on castle walls, now on a castle wall, you have the wall and then you have an area that people walk on which is called the rampart, now for the people on top of the walls. they will be there trying to keep the bad guys from coming in because that's the predicted purpose, it's ok to keep the bad guys from coming in and also repel them and they don't want to stay completely out in the open for them to play out well this part didn't play out on the battlements of medieval times The credences is the defensive part on top of the walls that was developed long before medieval times.
The Romans didn't have battlements, okay, and that's where you have kind of a large stone block that provides full cover. from arrow fire near any other type of projectiles and then you have a space in a Crennel between these stone blocks where you can lean out and shoot the bad guys, so the stone blocks are called Merlin and the spaces between the grains of gold and together they're called battlements now they're cool okay but there's a problem with battlements and that's when people get too close because when they're too close unless you lean out and they knock you down.
I'm not going out looking for them and often the battlements are too big and bulky for you to lean out and get your bow and that really gives cover for people against the wall. The answer to this is pretty impressive IMO when that is extending the battlements outside the wall a bit so that it sticks out and sticks out like a stream of wooden buildings and such, but that won't do anything unless there are some holes through it. that they can actually shoot, so this is the Battlement and this is the wall. The battlement doesn't just stretch out and stretch out so much that there's a gap in the middle and then they have corbels that rip.
The battlement rests on and between the corbels are holes. The hat rocks can be thrown straight down or you can just shoot straight through them to trap anyone against the wall. These things are these holes. They are called machicolations. They are one of the most iconic and identifying features of a castle. Now I thank you. guys who already knew the answer by staying with us rap because now we're going to get into some areas I haven't covered before regarding this design feature of extending battlements outside the actual walls of castles because there are historical examples examples from periods you know medieval period castles that had these extended battlements with no functional matriculation now it's funny at first when i've read about what machicolations were when i first saw the extended battlements outside the walls i thought that was really stupid and partly still I do and when I saw that video games don't have this, you know, defensive machicolations in there I called them out as a bug. take specifically i did it in my dragon age inquisition sky hold review well now i need to clear that up and MIT that was a bit out of context and i say here because i have since found out this was also done in historical castles with sorrel castles from many periods this extension existed without functional machicolations ok first of all i need to point out when the battlements are extended without machicolations between the holes this actually amplifies the original problem because you are just making the angle more difficult for you to shoot anyone who hits the wall so this can be without my circulation this can be a huge defensive detriment if it's on a wall where attackers won't actually get that close no problem and if no problem then why?
Would you still want to do it for two main reasons? It's okay, first of all, sometimes the walls were very, very narrow, okay, depending on the thickness of the castle wall, now the castle wall is Of course, there is a standard, and then there are exceptions. If you want a good defensible castle wall, you'll want it at least a meter thick and that's only for anyone if it's on a fortress wall facing an area that isn't really in danger. usually you still want a full meter thick on actual external walls at least two meters thick and more there are exceptions walls are thinner of course but if you want the standard and have the right level of structural strength, I guess for the castle, you can do it.
I wonder, at least, yes, a meter thick now if there really is a wall, especially if this is the outer wall of a key, oftenthey can be as little as a meter thick that wall will be what will create the wall on top of it and then if you want a proper battlement which will be between 20 and 30 centimeters thick which leaves a very small space for you to walk through a person could get away with it, but as soon as you can with someone else, there won't be much. room for them to intersect so there is a functional reason why you might want to extend the battlement outside the wall a bit just to create more walking space so this is one of the reasons why it does have sense to do this architectural style without defensive machicolations if you add machicolations on top of that I think it's because this is the interesting thing if you're going to extend it well and go to the trouble of having to do the architecture you have to add the columns to support things , pretty much in my mind it's exactly the same job to add defensive machicolations as well so I don't know why I wouldn't do it if that was one case, there's another case where I wouldn't and that's when it's not spread out enough, so there are some cases of historic castles where the battlement was extended a lot to like a lot just from the side of the wall now when the battlements are so yeah the battlements are extended so far you don't really need corbels p to support because most of it because if it's that big and it only moves maybe 1/3 of the wall most of the weight is still on the wall and it will be perfectly stable you don't really need corals to support it and if that is the case that Battlement doesn't spread far enough to give you known machicolations anyway, so you couldn't add them, but then I want the weird thing about this is that with such a small spread it knows about Battlement and won't create extra space either on the wall, then why did he turn to the same end?
So it was mentioned with the buildings. It looks good, it looks very good. The other thing is because the true origin of this style of architecture castles were a proper military function, it has the same kind of look and consequently even if it's not real it still has that and it does, I don't know, what it makes it look more prestigious, more military in that sense so one of the data examples of a castle has the battlement and you know the tops of the towers and the walls as a really small extension is Kidwell castle d so take a look at some of these shots here again the upper battlements there is an extension there that really has no functional purpose in all of ICAT the only reason because it would not provide additional wall space of any significant level so the only conclusion all i can come up with as to why it's placed there is that it looks good and it really does.
Honestly it makes a visual difference there just a plain flat wall kinda boring but just having that little border on top makes it look so much better so oddly enough the true origin of that you know these battlements superiors. The small extension protruding from the wall below was a military and defensive feature, but later became a visual iconic style of this architecture and so when people wanted
theirbuildings to look like a castle, they simply copied that style, but they didn't really go all the way. they just want it to look that way and that became more common as you get closer to even today you can take a look at all these castle like houses that are made to look like castles but ar not real defensive fortified castles.
This is one of the most common features you'll see on towers and walls. Those battlements and crenellations are always there. extension of them sitting slightly off the wall below and it's all for that iconic look. Just remember that if you want a castle to be adequately fortified and able to defend itself to its best ability, you don't want to do the visual. one wants to make the proper circulation or as I like to say magic collation you
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