History of Monumental Architecture

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Monumental architecture derives from a variety of characteristics ranging from its impact and functionality to its sustainability and elegance. There are also many other factors that convey a structure as being monumental. Some rely on the functions that contribute to their culture while; others rely on religious and political aspects. During the Bronze Age, the main influence of monumental architecture relied on each state’s political system. This can be seen throughout history, especially from archaic state-countries like Egypt. It is evident that in Egypt, there are monumental structures influenced by its political systems. In this paper, I will be examining what defines monumental architecture by including structures that demonstrate definitions of monumental aspects. According to the dictionary, “monumental is an adjective that describes a structure as being massive, imposing, and great in quantity, quality, extent or degree, with enduring significance.” Monumental architecture is represented throughout the social and political organization of each state. The structures inform us about what each culture valued, like gods, kings, queens, spiritual beliefs, afterlives or the leaders of each state. A great example that embodies both of these representations lies in the Egyptian tombs. In Egypt, their pharaohs primarily influenced their monumental constructions such as pyramids. The pyramids have a political aspect to them because of their social hierarchy pertaining to the pharaohs. Pharaoh’s remains “god-like,” so the religious aspect that the god-like figure demonstrates throughout the tombs pertains to their direct movement towards the heavens. The pyramids were constructed to sky to ensure the pharaohs that their afterlife would still be of the higher position in the social pyramid. But, according to Spiro Kostof, “monumental architecture is an arousing compilation of imposing, impressive, and pretentious structures that pronounce a dramatic visual...
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