The great cathedrals and palaces of medieval England were designed by people who made it up as they went along, and often discovered midway through a multigenerational project that they'd run out of space for an arch, or designed a building that couldn't hold up its own ceiling.
Historian James Alexander Cameron has collected photos of the bodges and hacks that were deployed as these flaws in the plan revealed themselves, along with hilarious, snarky commentary:
Wells Cathedral, nave 1170s, strainer arch 1338-48
So Mr Joy, you say our tower is totally dodgy and might fall down, what is your solution
An enormous angry owl
Yes, three of them. Three angry owls, one under each crossing arch
Are you serious it will look ridiculous
Have you got a better idea
Okay, angry owls it is
Great Mistakes in English Medieval architecture [James Alexander Cameron/Stained Glass Attitudes]
“When you’re proud to admit you did it.”
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