Romanesque church, but the interior of San Lorenzo gives an entirely different impression. Instead of
striving for height, Brunelleschi used a module based on the cube to give his building a sense of proportion.
The semicircular arch is repeated along the nave arcade and throughout the interior. A cool serenity comes
from the white walls with blue-gray columns and moldings, once again based on the classical orders. The
entire effect is characteristic of early Renaissance architecture—more delicate and light than what is seen
in Roman architecture.
Brunelleschi, Pazzi Chapel, begun 1441
The form of the Renaissance palace (palazzo in Italian) was established in the early fifteenth century, and it
influenced many later architects. Whereas medieval palaces are often quite irregular, with windows sized
and placed according to need, the Renaissance palace is marked by order. Leon Battista Alberti’s Palazzo
Rucellai is a good example of the Renaissance style. Windows are of equal sizes and are arranged above
one another.
Alberti, Palazzo Rucellai, 1446-51
A typical Renaissance palace is a rectangular block with three floors: the first floor is often occupied by
shops and has a heavy appearance; the second floor is the most important floor, with formal reception
areas; the topmost floor holds more private space, and the exterior façade of this level is lightest in
appearance. On the Palazzo Rucellai, Alberti used a variation of the Doric order on the lowest level, with
smaller windows and heavier looking blocks than those on the upper levels. The two upper stories have
pilasters using variations on the Ionic and Corinthian orders; the entire façade is modeled after the Roman
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