Wargames terrain in the 40K universe... Share:

Monday, 21 November 2011

Research - Gargoyles & Grotesques

No, I'm not talking about those Tyranid nor Dark Eldar units. And if you came here hoping to read about Susan Boyle then you are going to be sorely dissapointed... and are probably a little ill. This is a little post to educate you all in the difference between Gothic Gargoyles and Grotesques in the next installment of my Research Series! The two are constantly mis-represented and the distinction is one which is easily confused. Being both architecturally trained and immensely anal, I feel like I have a duty to point out the difference. After all, the Research Series is supposed to bring some architectural knowledge to terrain builders!

Gargoyles are functional building elements which are responsible for diverting water away from the walls in order to prevent it collecting at the foundation. As such, by necessity these water spouts will usually extend beyond the face of the buildings wall. The term gargoyle, comes from the Latin root "gurgulio", and the Old French "gargouille", meaning throat. It is no surprise then that Gargoyles pass rainwater through their throats and out of their mouths!

Example of a Gargoyle

Grotesques are (more often than not) purely ornamental decorations and the term normally refers to mostly eerie figures. The term is generally used to describe the ugly, disgusting or fantastic etc. and can be used for things from whole creatures to lone heads. These can also be labelled as Chimera(e).

Example of a Grotesque

Job done.
I'll spare you a lengthy history, but it is enough to know that Gargoyles can be seen as far back as ancient Greek architecture, where rain water run off was often directed through the mouths of lions heads carved into the stone work!

For other research articles head on over to the Research page.

As for Susan Boyle... I suppose she's the exception to the rule. Being both a Gargoyle and a Grotesque!?

1 comment:

  1. Wow, you have a great blog here.

    I run the Mid-West Monster Lab over at http://midwestmonsterlab.blogspot.com focusing on hobby turtorials, lore, and galleries.

    Would you care to blog exchange?