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Memorial Hall Essay

598 words - 2 pages

Memorial Hall

When walking through Boston's renowned Harvard Yard, one may scope out the mixture of architecture throughout its landscape. From the traditional Memorial Hall influenced by Romanesque churches, to the Carpenter Center for the Visual Arts, Harvard Yard is like a salad bowl of architecture. Perhaps because I am a lover of Victorian style structures, or maybe because of its interior's beauty and richness, Memorial Hall intrigued my interest most of all.

Memorial Hall, which was originally a civil war monument, is now a theater and student union for Harvard University. The 19th century architects Robert Ware and Henry Van Brunt designed this building to resemble the Victorian Gothic Romanesque churches of the time. Memorial Hall contains a theater, dinning hall, and a crossing (the civil war memorial).

The use of brick color on Memorial Hall is an important aspect of its exterior, as it creates a striped pattern and border along the outside walls. Furthermore, the slate on the roof displays a pattern to view as well. Upon examining this building one can't help but notice the traditional stained glass windows at the crossing of the structure. Although none of the stained glass windows contain religious references, the architects used the glass to create the traditional rose window, common in Victorian architecture. This window also allows a colorful light inside the memorial of the building. The interior of Memorial Hall differs from the gothic structures that the building resembles from the outside. While gothic structures were composed mostly of stone, Memorial Hall is decorated with walnut. The vaulting, which traditionally would be made of stone, is made of wood. There is a repeated use of the rosette, trefoil, quatrefoil, and cross...

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