Middle Ages Architecture
Emperor Constantine passed the Edict of Toleration in 313, allowing especially the Christian faith to spread. Constantine began a large church building program after moving the capitol to Byzantine which was renamed Constantinople. For the Christian religion large meeting places were needed. The temples used for the Roman Mythological religions were not designed for large crowds. To accommodate the need for larger areas the early Christians used a design called the basilica.
A basilica is a rectangular building with a large center isle know as a nave. The nave was flanked on both sides by side isles separated by columns. The roof was usually made of wooden beams which were often susceptible to fire or collapse over time.