Florence Cathedral
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Architect Arnolfo di Cambio
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Location Florence, Italy   map
Date 1296 to 1462   timeline
Building Type domed church, cathedral
 Construction System bearing masonry
Climate mediterranean
Context urban
Style Italian Renaissance
Notes "The Duomo." "Santa Maria del Fiore". Dome added by Filippo Brunelleschi.


Photo, Overview of Dome

Exterior view looking at facade, with a glimpse of dome above



Site Plan Drawing

Axonometric Drawing

Section Drawing

Section Drawing

...more drawings available on The GBC CD-ROM

Discussion Florence Cathedral Commentary

"The construction of the dome of Florence Cathedral (was) one of the germinal events of Renaissance architecture...The problem had been posed in the middle of the fourteenth century when the definitive plan for the octagonal crossing had been laid down. The diameter of the dome at 39.5 metres (130 feet) precluded the traditional use of wooden structuring to support the construction of the vault, while the use of buttresses as in northern Gothic cathedrals was ruled out by the building's design."

—Michael Raeburn, ed. Architecture of the Western World. p130.


1296— Cathedral begun on design by Arnolfo di Cambio.

1357— Project continued on a modified plan by Francesco Talenti

1366-7— Talenti's definitive design emerged calling for an enormous octagonal dome

1418— competition for construction of dome

1420— technical solution for vaulting proposed by Brunelleschi approved and construction begun

1436— church consecrated


On Piazza del Duomo.

Sources on Florence Cathedral

"Long-Span Structures", by Angus J. MacDonald, ArchitectureWeek No. 139, 2003.0326, pB1.1.

Werner Blaser and Monica Stucky. Drawings of Great Buildings. Boston: Birkhauser Verlag, 1983. ISBN 3-7643-1522-9. LC 83-15831. NA2706.U6D72 1983. plan drawing, p108. section drawing, p109. — Available at Amazon.com

Roger H. Clark and Michael Pause. Precedents in Architecture. New York: Van Nostrand Reinhold, 1985. ISBN 0-442-21668-8. LC 84-3543. NA2750.C55 1984. site plan drawing, p24. — Updated edition available at Amazon.com

Sir Banister Fletcher. Sir Banister Fletcher's A History of Architecture. 19th ed., edited by John Musgrove. London: Butterworths, 1987. ISBN 0-408-01587-X. NA200.F63. discussion, p511. drawings, p512. photos, p514. — The classic text of architectural history. Expanded 1996 edition available at Amazon.com

Johnson Architectural Images. Copyrighted slides in the Artifice Collection.

Spiro Kostof. A History of Architecture: Settings and Rituals. New York: Oxford University Press, 1985. ISBN 0-19-503472-4. LC 84-25375. NA200.K65 1985. p383-5.

Pier Luigi Nervi, ed. History of World Architecture. New York: Harry N. Abrams, 1971. LC 70-149850. NA510.M87. section drawing, p25. axonometric drawing, p26.

Michael Raeburn, ed. Architecture of the Western World. New York: Rizzoli International Publications, 1980. ISBN 0-8478-0349-x. NA200.A73. p130-1.

Marvin Trachtenberg and Isabelle Hyman. Architecture, from Prehistory to Post-Modernism. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall, 1986. ISBN 0-13-044702-1. NA200.T7. p282-3. — available at Amazon.com

Kevin Matthews. The Great Buildings Collection on CD-ROM. Artifice, 2001. ISBN 0-9667098-4-5.— Available at Amazon.com

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Web Resources
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