1. One of the ways that rich merchants spent their money was by making donations to churches. From the twelfth century, large churches called cathedrals - were being built in France.
These belonged to monasteries, but different groups of people contributed to their construction with their own labour, materials or money. Cathedrals were built of stone, and took many years to complete.
As they were being built, the area around the cathedrals became more populated, and when they were completed they became centres of pilgrimage. Thus, small towns developed around them.
2. Cathedrals were designed so that the priest’s voice could be heard clearly within the hall where large numbers of people gathered, and so that the singing by monks could sound beautiful and the chiming bells calling people to prayer could be heard over a great distance.
Fig.: Salisbury cathedral England
3. Stained glass was used for windows. During the day the sunlight would make them radiant for people inside the cathedral, and after sunset the light of candles would make them visible to people outside.
The stained glass windows narrated the stories in the Bible through pictures, which illiterate people could ‘read’.