pointed arches

The pointed arch, or ogival arch, consists of two circular arches intersecting at the apex. It was used in Islamic and Byzantine architecture and was revived in Sicily (in Cefalù, Palermo and Monreale) during the Norman-Swabian period. It also appeared in Cluny in 1088, with the construction of the third abbey. Thanks to the use of the pointed arch, the cathedrals became taller and more slender vertically, as it allowed for a better balance of weight and thus made it possible to abandon the thick walls, which also functioned as buttresses. It then became characteristic of Gothic and later Neo-Gothic architecture.