Brouges, Palaies Jacques Coeur

Here we have a courtyard with an arcade on only two sides. There is absolutely nothing wrong with this arrangement, which probably results from the construction of the surrounding buildings at different times.

Notice that the inside of the arcade is not vaulted - the floor or roof above is supported by beams instead. While this is perfectly acceptable, the vault is a higher form.

Here we have beautiful (and all too rare) elliptical arches. Many people confuse the ellipse and the oval. An oval has straight sections on the long sides; an ellipse does not. The oval is a mistake both structurally and aesthetically and should never be used except for a running track. While the difference between an ellipse and an oval is in many cases very slight, it is important. These ellipses are of perfect form.

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