An arch is a curved structural element that spans an open space, providing support and stability to a structure. It consists of a curved form composed of wedge-shaped blocks or segments known as voussoirs, with the topmost center stone called the keystone.
An arch is a curved structure used in architecture and construction to span an opening, such as a doorway or window, and distribute weight evenly across supports, such as walls or columns.
Arches are typically made of stone, brick, or concrete, and are held in place by a combination of gravity and lateral forces.
The ancient Romans perfected the concept of the arch as a building block, and used it extensively throughout their empire in the construction of aqueducts, bridges, amphitheaters and stadiums.
Arches have been used for thousands of years and have been a crucial component in many architectural styles, including Romanesque, Gothic, Renaissance, and Baroque.
Arches are valued for their strength, versatility, and aesthetic appeal, and continue to be a widely used feature in contemporary architecture.
1) What Is Arch?
An arch is a curved structural element that spans an open space and provides support to a structure or framework. It consists of a series of wedge-shaped blocks or stones, called voussoirs, that are arranged in a curved shape and held in place by the force of compression. The topmost center stone of an arch is known as the keystone, which is crucial for the stability and integrity of the arch.
Arches have been used in architecture and engineering for thousands of years and can be found in various forms, styles, and sizes across different cultures and time periods. They have played a significant role in the construction of bridges, aqueducts, cathedrals, palaces, and other monumental structures. The use of arches allows for the creation of large, open spaces without the need for excessive supporting columns or walls, making them an efficient and visually appealing architectural solution.
The curved shape of an arch enables it to distribute the weight and forces placed upon it more evenly, transferring the load to the supports or abutments at its ends. This characteristic makes arches capable of withstanding significant vertical and horizontal loads, as well as lateral forces such as wind or earthquakes. The stability and strength of arches rely on the compression forces exerted on the voussoirs, which keeps the arch in a stable equilibrium.
Arches can exhibit different shapes, including circular, pointed, elliptical, or even more elaborate decorative designs. Each shape has its own aesthetic appeal and structural properties, which architects and engineers consider when designing and constructing arch-based structures.
2) Glossary of Terms Related to Arches
- Arch: A curved structural element that spans an open space and supports weight by transferring it to its two endpoints, called abutments.
- Keystone: The central and often the topmost stone in an arch that locks the other stones in place and provides stability.
- Voussoirs: Wedge-shaped stones or bricks that make up the curved shape of an arch.
- Springing Line: The horizontal line at the base of an arch where the curve begins.
- Intrados: The inner curve or surface of an arch.
- Extrados: The outer curve or surface of an arch.
- Span: The distance between the two supports or abutments of an arch.
- Rise: The height or vertical distance from the springing line to the highest point of the arch.
- Intrados Radius: The radius of the curve on the inner surface of the arch.
- Extrados Radius: The radius of the curve on the outer surface of the arch.
- Center: The point from which the curve of an arch is drawn or the point around which the arch is formed.
- Abutments: The supporting structures or walls on either end of an arch that bear the load and resist the outward thrust of the arch.
- Skewback: The stone or masonry support at the springing point of an arch where it meets the abutment.
- Impost: The horizontal molding or projection that serves as the base or support for an arch.
- Archivolt: A series of concentric moldings or bands that frame and decorate the arch.
- Soffit: The underside or lower surface of an arch.
- Spandrel: The triangular space between the outer curve of an arch and a straight line connecting the top of the arch to the horizontal base or impost.
- Rib: A projecting band or molding that follows the curve of an arch, often found in ribbed vaulting.
- Ribbed Vaulting: A structural system of vaulting in which ribs form the framework, supporting and defining the surfaces of the vault.
- Flying Buttress: An external arched support that transmits the thrust of an arch or vault to a solid buttress or pier away from the main structure.
- Pendentive: A curved triangular element that transitions the square or polygonal base of a dome to the circular or spherical shape of the dome’s base.
- Fan Vaulting: An intricate style of vaulting in which the ribs radiate outwards from a central point, resembling a fan or a palm leaf.
- Strut: A diagonal member used to support and reinforce the structure of an arch or vault.
- Skew Arch: An arch that is constructed at an angle to the perpendicular or to the line of its abutments.
- Architrave: The lowermost horizontal element of an arch, typically found in classical architecture.
- Parapet: A low protective wall or barrier along the edge of a structure, often featuring decorative arches.
- Arcade: A series of arches supported by columns or piers, creating a row of openings or passageways.
- Arcade Arch: An individual arch within an arcade.
- Ambulatory: A covered walkway or passage, often with a series of arches, surrounding a central space or building.
- Arcade Vault: A series of arches that form a vaulted ceiling or roof.
- Antefix: An ornament that is upright along the eaves of a tiled roof; it is placed there to conceal the joints found between the rows of tiles.
This glossary provides an overview of key terms related to arches and arch construction. It can serve as a helpful reference when studying or discussing architectural elements and structures involving arches.
3) Arch Construction
Arch construction refers to the process of designing and building arches in various structures, including bridges, buildings, and monuments. It involves understanding the principles of arch design, selecting appropriate materials, and executing construction techniques to ensure stability, strength, and durability.
Here is an overview of the arch construction process:
Design and Planning:
- Determine the purpose and function of the arch, considering factors such as load-bearing requirements, span length, and aesthetic preferences.
- Choose the appropriate arch shape based on design goals and architectural style.
- Perform structural analysis and calculations to determine the dimensions, curvature, and angle of the arch for optimal load distribution.
- Develop detailed construction plans and drawings, including cross-sections and elevation views.
- Select suitable materials for the arch construction, considering factors such as strength, durability, and aesthetic qualities.
- Common materials for arch construction include stone, brick, concrete, steel, and timber.
- Consider the availability and cost of materials, as well as their compatibility with the overall design and structural requirements.
- Excavate and prepare the foundation where the arch will be built.
- Ensure the foundation is stable and capable of supporting the weight and forces exerted by the arch.
- Provide adequate drainage measures to prevent water accumulation that could undermine the stability of the foundation.
- Lay the initial course of stones or bricks, called the springing course, on the foundation.
- Gradually build up the arch by adding subsequent courses of voussoirs, ensuring that each stone or brick is precisely shaped to fit the curvature of the arch.
- Use mortar or other suitable bonding agents to secure the stones or bricks in place.
- Pay close attention to the alignment and leveling of each course to maintain the structural integrity of the arch.
- Place the keystone, the center stone of the arch, at the top center point.
- The keystone is often crucial for stabilizing and locking the arch into position.
- Ensure that the keystone is accurately shaped and properly positioned to distribute the forces evenly throughout the arch.
Finishing and Maintenance:
- Once the arch is constructed, apply appropriate finishes or treatments to protect the arch from weathering, such as waterproofing coatings or protective coatings for metal arches.
- Regularly inspect and maintain the arch to address any signs of deterioration, such as cracks, settlement, or corrosion.
- Perform necessary repairs or restoration work to preserve the structural integrity and aesthetic value of the arch.
Arch construction requires a combination of engineering knowledge, craftsmanship, and attention to detail. By following proper design principles, employing suitable construction techniques, and using quality materials, arches can be built to withstand the forces they encounter and stand the test of time.
4) Types of Arches in Architecture
i) Flat Arch
A flat arch, also known as a straight arch or jack arch, is an architectural element that follows a straight line instead of a curved shape like traditional arches. It consists of a series of wedge-shaped voussoirs or bricks that are stacked in a slightly angled or stepped manner to create the appearance of an arch. The flat arch derives its strength from the angle at which the voussoirs are laid and the interlocking of the bricks.
The Flat arch creates an equilateral triangle within Intrados as a base at an angle of 60° degrees. The Flat arch is normally utilized for the construction of light-load structures.
The Extrados in the Flat arches is straight and Flat. The intrados is similarly Flat and provided a slight increase of camber of about 10 mm to 15 mm. A flat arch is generally the weakest arch.
Advantages of Flat Arches:
- Clearance: Flat arches provide greater clearance and headroom compared to curved arches. They allow for more open space beneath the arch without the need for additional supports, making them suitable for areas where height restrictions or clearance requirements are a concern.
- Versatility: Flat arches can span a wide range of openings, from windows and doorways to large openings in industrial buildings or warehouses. They offer flexibility in design and can be easily adapted to various architectural styles and structural requirements.
- Ease of Construction: Building a flat arch requires less skill and effort compared to constructing a curved arch. The straight-line arrangement of the voussoirs simplifies the construction process and reduces the need for complex formwork or specialized masonry techniques.
- Cost-Effectiveness: The simplicity of flat arch construction translates into cost savings in terms of labor and materials. The straight bricks or blocks used in flat arches are typically easier to source and less expensive than specially shaped stones or bricks required for curved arches.
Disadvantages of Flat Arches:
- Load Distribution: Unlike curved arches, flat arches do not distribute loads as efficiently. The weight placed on the arch tends to concentrate at the springing points, which can lead to increased stress and potential structural issues if the arch is not properly designed or supported.
- Limited Span: Flat arches have a shorter span compared to curved arches of the same height. They are better suited for smaller openings and may require additional supports, such as columns or piers, for larger spans.
Applications in Construction:
- Industrial Buildings: Flat arches find application in industrial buildings, warehouses, and factories where wide openings are required for the movement of vehicles, machinery, or goods.
- Residential Construction: Flat arches are commonly used in residential buildings for doorways, windows, and openings between rooms. They offer a simple yet effective way to provide architectural interest while maximizing headroom.
- Infrastructure Projects: Flat arches are used in infrastructure projects like tunnels, culverts, and underground passages. Their straight-line construction facilitates easier formwork and installation in these structures.
- Restoration and Renovation: Flat arches are often employed in the restoration and renovation of historic buildings or structures where it is essential to match existing architectural features and maintain the original design aesthetic.
It is important to note that flat arches may not be suitable for all applications, especially in cases where significant load-bearing capacity or architectural grandeur is required.
Structural engineers and architects should carefully assess the specific project requirements and consider the advantages and disadvantages of flat arches before selecting them for construction.
ii) Round Arch
A round arch, also known as a circular arch, is a curved architectural element that forms a complete or partial circle. It consists of a series of wedge-shaped voussoirs or stones that are arranged in a circular pattern and held in place by the force of compression. The round arch derives its strength from the curved shape, which allows it to distribute loads evenly and efficiently.
Advantages of Round Arches:
- Structural Stability: Round arches are known for their excellent load-bearing capacity and structural stability. The curvature of the arch enables it to distribute vertical loads, such as the weight of a structure or the forces acting upon it, evenly across the arch and down to the supports or abutments at the ends. This inherent stability makes round arches suitable for spanning larger openings and supporting heavy loads.
- Aesthetics and Architectural Appeal: Round arches have a timeless and visually pleasing appearance. Their graceful curves and symmetrical form can enhance the overall aesthetic appeal of a structure. Round arches are associated with various architectural styles, including Roman, Byzantine, and Renaissance, lending a sense of grandeur and historical significance to buildings.
- Durability: The rounded shape of the arch helps to resist external forces such as wind, earthquakes, and settling of the supporting structures. The compression forces generated within the arch contribute to its durability and longevity.
- Versatility: Round arches can be used in a wide range of architectural applications. They can span different types of openings, such as doorways, windows, arcades, and bridges. The versatility of round arches allows for diverse design possibilities and adaptability to various structural requirements.
Disadvantages of Round Arches:
- Height Clearance: Round arches require more vertical space compared to other arch types. The curved shape can reduce the height clearance beneath the arch, which may be a constraint in areas with limited vertical space or height restrictions.
- Construction Complexity: Constructing round arches requires specialized masonry skills and techniques. The proper shaping and placement of the voussoirs require careful craftsmanship to ensure the stability and aesthetics of the arch. Additionally, the formwork used during construction can be more intricate and time-consuming compared to simpler arch forms.
Applications in Construction:
- Bridges: Round arches have been used for centuries in bridge construction due to their structural integrity. They are suitable for spanning rivers, valleys, and other large openings. Notable examples include the Pont du Gard in France and the Ponte Vecchio in Italy.
- Architectural Buildings: Round arches are commonly seen in the architecture of cathedrals, churches, palaces, and government buildings. They can be found in features such as entryways, arcades, galleries, and interior spaces, adding elegance and a sense of grandeur to the design.
- Aqueducts: Round arches were extensively used in the construction of ancient Roman aqueducts to carry water over long distances. Their structural strength and ability to span large spans made them ideal for this purpose.
- Restoration and Replication: Round arches are frequently employed in the restoration and replication of historical structures. They are essential for maintaining architectural authenticity and preserving the original design features of heritage buildings.
Round arches continue to be widely used in modern construction, especially in projects where architectural beauty, structural strength, and historical references are desired.
The specific design and application of round arches depend on the project requirements, structural considerations, and desired aesthetic outcomes.
iii) Segmental Arch
A segmental arch, also known as a segmented arch, is a type of arch with a curved shape that resembles a segment of a circle or an ellipse. It is formed by a series of wedge-shaped voussoirs or bricks that are arranged in a curved pattern. The segmental arch has a radius larger than a semicircle, resulting in a gentler curve.
Advantages of Segmental Arches:
- Versatility: Segmental arches are versatile and can be used in a wide range of architectural applications. They are suitable for spanning both narrow and wide openings, making them adaptable to various design requirements.
- Ease of Construction: Constructing segmental arches is relatively simpler compared to other arch types. The voussoirs are cut to fit the curved shape, but they do not require the same precision as round arches. This simplicity can reduce construction time and costs.
- Clearance: Segmental arches provide better vertical clearance compared to round arches. The flatter curve allows for greater headroom beneath the arch, making them advantageous in areas where vertical space is a consideration.
- Aesthetics: Segmental arches can offer a pleasing visual aesthetic. The curved shape adds a subtle architectural detail and elegance to buildings, especially when used in doorways, windows, and interior spaces.
Disadvantages of Segmental Arches:
- Load Distribution: Segmental arches distribute loads differently compared to round arches. The concentration of forces tends to be higher at the springing points, which can lead to increased stress and potential structural issues if the arch is not properly designed or supported.
- Span Limitations: Segmental arches have certain span limitations due to their flatter curve. They are best suited for medium to small spans and may require additional supports, such as columns or piers, for larger openings.
Applications in Construction:
- Residential Construction: Segmental arches are commonly used in residential buildings for windows, doorways, and interior arches. They add architectural interest while allowing for greater headroom and space utilization.
- Bridges: Segmental arches find application in bridge construction, particularly for small to medium spans. They are often used in pedestrian bridges, footbridges, and smaller road bridges.
- Architectural Features: Segmental arches can be incorporated into architectural features such as arcades, galleries, and decorative elements in both historic and contemporary buildings.
- Infrastructure Projects: Segmental arches are employed in infrastructure projects such as culverts, tunnels, and underground passages. They offer a sturdy and aesthetically pleasing solution for spanning these structures.
Segmental arches combine both aesthetic appeal and structural functionality. They are an excellent choice when a curved arch form is desired, but the span or clearance requirements are not conducive to a traditional round arch.
By carefully considering the specific design and engineering considerations, segmental arches can enhance the architectural beauty and functionality of a variety of construction projects.
iv) Horseshoe Arch
A horseshoe arch is a distinctive architectural element characterized by its U-shaped or semicircular shape, resembling an inverted horseshoe. It features two parallel curved sides that rise from the springing points and meet at a central point known as the apex. The horseshoe arch has been a prominent feature in various architectural styles, particularly in Islamic and Moorish architecture.
The title of this arch is offered horseshoe arch because its shape is like a horseshoe that curves better than the semicircle. The horseshoe arches are normally utilized for architectural provisions.
Advantages of Horseshoe Arches:
- Architectural Aesthetics: Horseshoe arches are renowned for their striking visual appeal and decorative qualities. They add a sense of elegance, intricacy, and cultural richness to architectural designs, particularly in Islamic and Mudejar styles.
- Structural Stability: The horseshoe arch form offers inherent stability due to the curved shape and the way it distributes loads. The arch’s sides create a smooth flow of forces, resulting in a stable and self-supporting structure.
- Adaptability: Horseshoe arches can be easily adapted to different architectural contexts and design requirements. They can be modified to accommodate various spans and heights while retaining their characteristic shape.
- Symbolic Significance: In certain cultures and historical periods, the horseshoe arch has carried symbolic meanings associated with protection, luck, and spirituality, adding cultural and historical value to structures.
Disadvantages of Horseshoe Arches:
- Restricted Clearance: Horseshoe arches have a lower clearance compared to other arch types due to their inward-curving sides. This limitation may not be suitable in spaces where vertical clearance is a consideration.
- Load Distribution: The concentrated forces at the springing points of horseshoe arches can lead to increased stress. Adequate engineering and structural considerations are necessary to ensure proper load distribution and prevent potential issues.
Applications in Construction:
- Islamic and Moorish Architecture: Horseshoe arches have been prominently used in Islamic and Moorish architectural styles, seen in structures like mosques, palaces, and fortresses. Notable examples include the Great Mosque of Cordoba and the Alhambra in Spain.
- Interior Design: Horseshoe arches are often employed as decorative elements in interior design, such as in doorways, alcoves, and wall niches. They add a sense of grandeur and exoticism to spaces.
- Restorations and Replications: Horseshoe arches find application in the restoration and replication of historical buildings with Islamic or Moorish influences. They are essential for maintaining architectural authenticity and preserving cultural heritage.
- Contemporary Architecture: Horseshoe arches are occasionally utilized in modern architecture to evoke a sense of historical reference or cultural appreciation. They can be incorporated into various structures, including residential buildings, hotels, and cultural centers.
Horseshoe arches are an architectural element that offers a unique blend of visual appeal, cultural significance, and structural stability.
Whether used in historical contexts or modern designs, they contribute to the overall character and beauty of architectural creations.
v) Pointed Shape Arch
A pointed shape arch, also known as a pointed arch or Gothic arch, is a distinctive architectural element characterized by its pointed or acute-angled shape. It is formed by two curved sides that rise from the springing points and meet at a central point known as the apex. The pointed arch has been a prominent feature in various architectural styles, particularly in Gothic architecture.
The pointed-shaped arches are similarly identified as the Gothic arch. The pointed shape arch carries two arcs of the circle which fulfills at the apex and sets a triangle.
Advantages of Pointed Shape Arches:
- Structural Stability: Pointed shape arches offer excellent structural stability due to their pointed design. The shape allows for a more efficient distribution of forces and weight, which reduces the amount of stress on the arch and its supporting elements.
- Height Clearance: Pointed arches provide greater height clearance compared to other arch types. The steeply angled sides of the arch allow for more vertical space beneath the arch, making them advantageous in areas where height restrictions or clearance requirements are a concern.
- Architectural Aesthetics: Pointed arches are highly regarded for their aesthetic appeal and dramatic effect. They add a sense of verticality, elegance, and sophistication to architectural designs, particularly in Gothic and medieval styles. The pointed arches are often associated with grand cathedrals and churches.
- Versatility: Pointed shape arches can be adapted to various design requirements and structural configurations. They can be modified to accommodate different spans and heights while maintaining their characteristic pointed shape.
Disadvantages of Pointed Shape Arches:
- Complex Construction: Constructing pointed shape arches can be more complex compared to simpler arch forms. The precision required in shaping and placing the voussoirs or stones to form the pointed arch demands skilled craftsmanship and meticulous attention to detail.
- Increased Material Stress: The acute angles of pointed arches result in increased stress concentration at the apex and springing points. Adequate engineering and design considerations are necessary to ensure proper load distribution and prevent potential structural issues.
Applications in Construction:
- Gothic Architecture: Pointed shape arches are synonymous with Gothic architecture and are prevalent in the design of cathedrals, churches, and other religious structures. They are used in various architectural elements, including doorways, windows, vaults, and flying buttresses.
- Revivalist Architecture: Pointed shape arches continue to be utilized in revivalist architectural styles, such as Neo-Gothic and Victorian Gothic. These arches add a sense of historical reference and architectural character to buildings.
- Residential Construction: Pointed shape arches can be incorporated into residential buildings to create unique and visually striking architectural features. They can be used in entrances, windows, and interior design elements, adding a touch of elegance and individuality.
- Interior Design and Decor: Pointed arches can be incorporated into interior design and decor elements to create a sense of architectural interest and aesthetic appeal. They can be used as decorative elements, room dividers, or accents in both traditional and contemporary settings.
Pointed shape arches bring an air of sophistication and historical charm to architectural designs. Whether used in religious structures, residential buildings, or interior spaces, they are valued for their structural stability, verticality, and visually captivating appearance.
vi) Semi-Circular Arch
A semi-circular arch is a type of arch characterized by a half-circle shape. It is formed by a series of wedge-shaped voussoirs or stones that are arranged in a curved pattern, with the center of the curve located at the springing points. The semi-circular arch is a classic and widely used arch shape in architecture.
The semi-circular arch in the center will lie on the spring line. In the semi-circular arch, the thrust transmitted to the abutment is completely in a vertical direction. The shape of the arch looks like a semi-circle.
Advantages of Semi-Circular Arches:
- Structural Stability: Semi-circular arches provide excellent structural stability. The curvature of the arch distributes the load and forces uniformly along the arch, transferring them to the supports or abutments at the ends. This structural stability makes semi-circular arches suitable for spanning wider openings and supporting significant loads.
- Ease of Construction: Semi-circular arches are relatively easy to construct compared to other complex arch forms. The voussoirs are cut to fit the curved shape, and the construction process does not require intricate masonry techniques. This simplicity can save construction time and costs.
- Aesthetics and Timelessness: Semi-circular arches have a timeless and visually pleasing appearance. They are associated with various architectural styles, including Roman, Byzantine, and Renaissance. Their symmetrical and graceful curves add a sense of elegance and classical beauty to architectural designs.
- Versatility: Semi-circular arches are versatile and can be used in a wide range of architectural applications. They can span different types of openings, such as doorways, windows, arcades, and tunnels. The versatility of semi-circular arches allows for diverse design possibilities and adaptability to various structural requirements.
Disadvantages of Semi-Circular Arches:
- Clearance: Semi-circular arches may have limitations in terms of height clearance compared to other arch types. The curvature of the arch reduces the vertical space beneath the arch, which may be a constraint in areas with limited vertical clearance requirements.
- Design Constraints: The fixed curvature of semi-circular arches may limit design options compared to arches with more varied shapes. Architectural creativity and flexibility may be restricted to some extent when working with semi-circular arches.
Applications in Construction:
- Architectural Buildings: Semi-circular arches are commonly used in the architecture of cathedrals, churches, government buildings, and other monumental structures. They can be found in doorways, windows, arcades, and galleries, adding a sense of grandeur and classical beauty to the design.
- Bridges: Semi-circular arches are employed in bridge construction, particularly for smaller to medium spans. They can be used in footbridges, pedestrian bridges, and smaller road bridges, providing structural stability and architectural appeal.
- Aqueducts: Semi-circular arches were extensively used in the construction of ancient Roman aqueducts. Their structural strength and ability to span large spans made them ideal for carrying water over long distances.
- Restoration and Replication: Semi-circular arches are frequently utilized in the restoration and replication of historical structures. They are essential for maintaining architectural authenticity and preserving the original design features of heritage buildings.
Semi-circular arches offer a combination of structural stability, aesthetic appeal, and versatility, making them a popular choice in architecture. Their classical and timeless design has stood the test of time and continues to be appreciated in various construction projects around the world.
vii) Venetian Arch
A Venetian arch, also known as a three-centered arch or a Venetian window arch, is a type of arch characterized by its unique three-centered shape. It is a variation of the pointed arch and is commonly associated with Venetian and Renaissance architecture. The Venetian arch features a deeper curve at the crown, or central point, compared to the springing line, resulting in a distinctive profile.
Advantages of Venetian Arches:
- Architectural Aesthetics: Venetian arches have a distinct and visually appealing profile that adds elegance, grace, and architectural interest to buildings. The three-centered shape creates a sense of movement and visual intrigue, making them a focal point in architectural design.
- Increased Height Clearance: The deeper curve at the crown of a Venetian arch allows for increased height clearance compared to traditional pointed arches. This feature provides more vertical space beneath the arch, offering greater flexibility in design and functionality.
- Versatility: Venetian arches can be adapted to various architectural styles and design contexts. They can be used in windows, doorways, and decorative elements, adding a touch of sophistication and uniqueness to the overall design.
- Symbolic and Cultural Significance: Venetian arches carry historical and cultural significance, particularly in Venetian and Renaissance architecture. They are associated with the architectural heritage of the region and can evoke a sense of tradition and cultural identity.
Disadvantages of Venetian Arches:
- Complexity of Construction: Constructing Venetian arches requires more intricate masonry work compared to simpler arch forms. The varying radii and curves demand precision in cutting and placing the voussoirs or stones, requiring skilled craftsmanship and attention to detail.
- Limited Availability of Pre-fabricated Elements: Pre-fabricated architectural elements or materials specifically designed for Venetian arches may be less readily available compared to standard arch forms. This can increase the complexity and cost of construction or restoration projects.
Applications in Construction:
- Venetian and Renaissance Architecture: Venetian arches are a prominent feature in the architectural style of Venice and the Renaissance period. They can be seen in palaces, churches, and public buildings, particularly in the windows and decorative elements of these structures.
- Residential Buildings: Venetian arches can be incorporated into residential buildings to create unique and visually striking architectural features. They can be used in windows, doorways, and interior design elements, adding a touch of elegance and historical charm.
- Restoration and Replication: Venetian arches are essential in the restoration and replication of historical buildings with Venetian or Renaissance influences. They are crucial for maintaining architectural authenticity and preserving the cultural heritage associated with these architectural styles.
- Decorative and Artistic Elements: Venetian arches can be utilized as decorative and artistic elements in interior design, such as wall niches, alcoves, or architectural accents. They can enhance the visual appeal of spaces and add a sense of grandeur.
Venetian arches offer a unique and captivating architectural feature with their distinctive three-centered shape. They add a touch of historical elegance and cultural significance to buildings, making them a valuable choice in architectural design and restoration projects.
5) Types of Arches based on number of Centers
Based on number of centers the arches are classified as:
Segmental, semi-circular, flat, horse-shoe arches and stilted arches are one centered arches. In some cases, perfectly circular arch is provided for circular windows which is called as bull’s eye arch is also come under these category.
This type of arch have only one centre. Segmental, semi-circular, flat arches, horse-shoe arches and stilted arches come under this category. Sometime, a perfectly circular arch known as a bull’s eye arch, is provided for the circular window.
Two Centered Arches
Pointed or gothic or lancet arches are generally come under this type.
An arch whose intrados curve is described from two centres. Pointed, gothic, lancet and semi-elliptical arches generally come under this type.
Three Centered Arches
Semi elliptical and Florentine arches are generally having three number of centers.
A three-centred arch is an elliptical approximation using three tangent arcs. A true ellipse is a shape created by making a diagonal section cut through a cone or cylinder. The ellipse has two focal points and a constantly changing arc radius. Semi elliptical and Florentine arches are generally having three centers
Four Centered Arches
Venetian arch is a typical example for four-centered arch. Tudor arch is also having four centers.
Venetian arch is a typical example for four-centered arch. Tudor arch is also having four centers.
- A four-centred arch is a low, wide type of arch with a pointed apex.
- It has four centres.
- Venetian arch and Tudor arch is a typical examples of this type of arches.
- It is widely used in Islamic architecture.
- This type of arch uses space efficiently and decoratively when used for doorways.
Five centered arches
A good semi-elliptical shape arch contains five centers.