Early Type Neo-Romanian Window

An early type (1910s) Neo-Romanian style window from Mosilor area, Bucharest. (©Valentin Mandache)

The Neo-Romanian style features a number of types/ phases and directions of development throughout its history as an architectural order. What I call the early Neo-Romanian style is how it was imaged and presented by the architect Ion Mincu, the initiator of this style, and his students, in its first phase of development. This type was fashionable from the 1890s until the end of the Great War, when the style entered what I call the citadel type of the development (see a citadel type example by clicking here), subsequently evolving on a multitude of directions and fashions. One of the most obvious characteristics of the early Neo-Romanian style is the recycling of late medieval Wallachian church architectural motifs, which in their turn derive in large part from a rich Byzantine and Ottoman Islamic decorative register. The window example in the image above, which I photographed in the Mosilor area of Bucharest, belongs to that phase or type of development. The window panes resemble those of the Southern Romanian churches, together with the spiral grooves on the side columns or the heavy arch that spans them. The abundant grapevine frieze and the two stylised floral Greek type crosses flanking the arch are also taken from the church decorative panoply. I very much like the two white painted eagles from the top edges of the picture, which represent the heraldic sign of the old Principality of Wallachia, another symbol present on local church decoration stating the secular power of the princes, vassals of the the Sublime Porte, that once ruled over the lands of Southern Romania.


I endeavor through this daily series of images and small articles to inspire appreciation of the historic houses of Romania, a virtually undiscovered, but fascinating chapter of European architectural history and heritage.


If you plan acquiring a historic property in Romania or start a renovation project, I would be delighted to advice you in sourcing the property, specialist research, planning permissions, restoration project management, etc. To discuss your particular plan please see my contact details in the Contact page of this weblog.


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