ARCHITECT, French
(active 1060-1120 in Normandy)

Exterior view

1060-1120
Photo
Saint-Étienne, Caen (Calvados)

Around 1060-65 the building of two abbey churches in Caen, the Saint-Étienne and the Sainte-Trinité, was begun. The architectural rivalry between these two churches over decades saw the perfection of the Norman style. The benefactors were William the Conqueror and his wife Mathilde.

Both churches have a powerful twin-towered west front, a nave and two aisles with a tree-story elevation, and an aisle-less transept.

With the two abbey churches at Caen, Norman architecture had reached the zenith of its achievement. Both Cluny III and the churches at Caen represent the almost simultaneous perfection of an idea which architects had been grappling with for more than a century.

The photo shows the west front with two towers.

View the ground plan of Saint-Étienne, Caen.




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