ARCHITECT, German
(active around 1150 in North Rhine-Westphalia)

View of the westwork

c. 1150
Photo
St. Petrus and St Gorgonius, Minden

A westwork (German: Westwerk) is the monumental, west-facing entrance section of a Carolingian, Ottonian, or Romanesque church. The exterior consists of multiple stories between two towers. The main function of the westwork was to draw attention to the emperor, even if he was not there in person. It embodied the power of the state and the ruler. The westwork church encompasses two distinct areas of significance within it: the actual church to the east dedicated to the saints, and the bulwark-like westwork, the place of the ruler, protector of the church.

The photo shows the westwork of the cathedral parish church of St. Petrus and St Gorgonius in Minden, The western end from the first half of the tenth century was converted to a perpendicular block in the mid-twelfth century.




© Web Gallery of Art, created by Emil Krén and Daniel Marx.