Why do medieval buildings overhang their lower floors?


  1. Nick Koiter

    Nick Koiter9 minutes ago

    the small extended battlements are part of blocking intruders, walking up a wall with a 50cm extended battlement means the angle of your rope is closer to 90 degree(you cant push your feet into the wall for grip) if a wall had an inward battlement wall or a flat battlement wall a rope tossed up would angle towards the wall you were climbing giving you an advantage when scaling it. also a anchor running up the wall (because you tossed it to far forward) will bounce back or hit the bottom of the battlement instead of have a chance to hook the wall.

  2. P

    P3 hours ago

    But an important part of a castle's function _was_ the look. It was a symbol of status, power, authority, investment, continuity. The military eye might see (lack of) machicolations and fields of fire and such stuff, but the common eye would just be impressed by the sheer scale and audacity and architecture and presence and massive cost of the thing. Form is the function, especially moreso after the need for maintaining original military function became less relevant. It's the same psychology which is behind extravagant government and corporate buildings today.

  3. protator

    protator4 hours ago

    In most cities taxes depended on the size of the ground floor. The overhanging roofs also kept some of the rain away from the stressed lower walls. You could build the upper floors with as much overhang as you wanted, so long as carriages and knights on horseback were able pass through. That's why often a second floor had even more overhang than the first. And it's not illogical that tax laws were so similar throu out northern europe. They needed a simple and easy to enforce tax system. And the wealthy people, the only ones who could afford houses in the city centre, wouldn't have liked tax officers walking through their houses measuring the size of their bedrooms. That's also why many smartass local lords tried to counter that loophole with additional taxes, like taxes on the number of doors to the side alleys, the number of windows facing the main street etc. Stuff a small number of not too smart city officals could put onto paper without even being noticed by the house owners. There weren't many non-violent ways for the aristocrats to make money so they copied what others did.

  4. William Barath

    William Barath4 hours ago

    "because it looks cool" - it's a design style called Brutalism and it makes things feel dangerous to approach because we instinctively know that something which is heavier on top could fall over on us.

  5. William Barath

    William Barath4 hours ago

    The overhang also causes the water to fall a distance from the stone base, so the action of the movement of the water when it strikes the surface isn't to carve the ground away from the base which would cause the foundation of the stone wall to break apart.

  6. Dexter Baader

    Dexter Baader6 hours ago

    To keep the spidurs out

  7. Eric Schmidt

    Eric Schmidt13 hours ago

    At what point I. The video does he answer it. Jeeebus get to the point.

  8. Lance Pickett

    Lance Pickett16 hours ago

    An additional reason for upper floors, in some holds, taxes (in form of coin, product, or labor)in "urban" centers were assessed by the footprint of the building. This also added to the number of floors in a building.

  9. cheeriomartinez

    cheeriomartinez19 hours ago

    I thought it was because they through there buckets of shit out windows and didn't want poop on the side of their walls

  10. Chris Wicker

    Chris Wicker20 hours ago

    Screaming at the end killed it for me

  11. Pooch_Dog Gaming

    Pooch_Dog GamingDay ago

    18 mins? anyone got the TLDR version?

  12. joe solo

    joe soloDay ago

    Taxes! Medeveil house taxes where calculeted by the foot print on the ground not on the total square footing of the building. Everything above ground was free of taxes. Humain ingeniosity did the rest.

  13. subpop2005

    subpop2005Day ago

    Hi i'm from france and when i was in school my history teacher gave us this explanation at 6:44

  14. Kjc Ile

    Kjc IleDay ago

    They didn't have AC back in those days so air could come up in vents and each level would protect the lower levels from weather.

  15. Lataco Grande

    Lataco GrandeDay ago

    Well it's very convenient if you don't have an umbrella and pouring rain.

  16. Lunchbox

    LunchboxDay ago

    thats the skyrim mod music

  17. MDK 1311

    MDK 1311Day ago

    Seems like you forgot to mention the taxes. Since taxes were calculated based on the ground level surface. So each floor they gained in surface, but didn't have to pay additional taxes. The extension is also called a corbel. Video was quite interesting though.

  18. Peter Sobocki

    Peter Sobocki2 days ago

    A story I was told was that people of the time would throw the contents of their bed pans and wash buckets out of the windows into the street and the overhang gave those on foot a bit of protection - sounded plausible at the time.

  19. Anne-Marie

    Anne-Marie2 days ago


  20. Pam H

    Pam H2 days ago

    People must have looked in each other's windows a lot.



    It's so it's harder to climb up

  22. Keith Brown

    Keith Brown2 days ago


  23. Vasili Korotkov

    Vasili Korotkov3 days ago


  24. andrew robertson

    andrew robertson3 days ago

    Get to the fucking point!

  25. Mark Rushow

    Mark Rushow3 days ago

    Harder to climb a wall that extends out as well.

  26. Sykeon Roa

    Sykeon Roa3 days ago

    is your accent real?

  27. splash

    splash3 days ago

    They look as stable as a fat man with skinny legs!

  28. Stitch I'Lalu

    Stitch I'Lalu4 days ago

    I thought it was so they couldnt be climbed up as easily.

  29. PiranhaJaw22

    PiranhaJaw224 days ago

    The castle openings are called Machicolations.

  30. Ndlanding

    Ndlanding4 days ago

    About the ground floor... Keeping animals really requires a non-wood floor, since cows and such are not usually house-trained.

  31. Nimitzclass A

    Nimitzclass A4 days ago

    This is how i buld my houses in Minecraft...

  32. adajanetta1

    adajanetta14 days ago

    The American equivalent is the 'stockade' style.www.thoughtco.com/guide-to-colonial-american-house-styles-178049

  33. candycabngfl

    candycabngfl4 days ago

    Pretty interesting, I had always just assumed it was done for defensive purposes at least on stone buildings like castles, forts etc. I Don't think I have ever thought about it on regular buildings but it makes perfect sense now, Thanks :-)

  34. Robert T

    Robert T4 days ago

    The two architectural reasons seem the most likely.

  35. Brandon Pilcher

    Brandon Pilcher4 days ago

    Maybe the reason jettying became popular with commoners' timber buildings is because it was a trend in the "elite" architecture of the castles? Maybe the commoners wanted to emulate their social superiors here.

  36. CanadianTurf Sandwich

    CanadianTurf Sandwich5 days ago



    PCQMAN QUADRUM5 days ago

    You lazyyy mapet if you do a research do it all the way through. And don't pretend that you have all the answers. The houses another big reason you miss completely to have the walls out is the rain water do not go near foundation to sink them. And the castles to have gone out with top is for added strength against heavy projectile and added protection.... Just my opinion if I'm wrong ma bad. have a nice day

  38. Jeff Engel

    Jeff Engel5 days ago

    Jesus, get to the point man. I gave up. Blah blah blah.....

  39. Johnmadara

    Johnmadara5 days ago

    I thought the small overhangs was to prevent people from climbing or scaling the wall

  40. Rich F

    Rich F5 days ago

    I like the images of Canterbury! My unit city :D

  41. DJ legion

    DJ legion5 days ago

    why did youtube play this after I watched linus talk about iphone stuff ?

  42. Scott T

    Scott T5 days ago

    I think the reason is best described at the 7min mark.

  43. Jade Sturm

    Jade Sturm5 days ago

    In many of our medieval cities here in Germany some of the old houses, but also those built in later periods, continued to have this kind of overhanging. It was due to buildig regulations of the time. You paid for the used space on the bottom and could get more living space for your money. There was a later period where you paid for the wideness of the front. So they built really slim but very deep houses. In my city the rich patricians lived in the front while the families working for them had to live in shacks further back. It was a very unhygenic time. They where basically sleeping with the animals in ~1,80m tall sheds.

  44. BanielDrown

    BanielDrown5 days ago

    why is this video 18 minutes long!?!?!?!?!?!!?

  45. James AraSmith

    James AraSmith5 days ago

    There is also emptying the chamber pot without hitting the person emptying their's on the floor below.

  46. Taekwon Crawfish

    Taekwon Crawfish5 days ago

    This guy is aids.

  47. Gavin Lynas

    Gavin Lynas5 days ago

    I think the jettying without holes on castles was a clever way of killing or 'getting' more people at once when something like a vat of hot tar or some other deadly substance was poured over the edge, the radius of effect would be wider. They could potentially get 5 rows of people rather probably 3 if everything was flush.

  48. BluCat

    BluCat6 days ago

    You've become an inspiration Shad! www.reddit.com/r/Minecraft/comments/9feq4o/functional_battlements/?ref=share&ref_source=link www.reddit.com/r/Minecraft/comments/9fin9i/word_of_the_day_machicolations_they_dont_look/?ref=share&ref_source=link

  49. Vladimír Dzurilla

    Vladimír Dzurilla6 days ago

    9:29 do you really showed picture of the Spiš Castle? I'm honnored castle from my homeland Slovakia made it to your videos :D

  50. Ognjen D

    Ognjen D6 days ago

    Toilet was mounted there. Added advantage was in keeping loiterers away from your house.

  51. Darius

    Darius6 days ago

    crongratulations on this video. from an architect

  52. Darius

    Darius6 days ago

    5:46 - the problem with russian :D

  53. Maria Bareiss

    Maria Bareiss7 days ago

    I was going to watch this but I think I'll research it myself and save sixteen minutes of my life instead!

  54. Michael Bradish

    Michael Bradish7 days ago


  55. Tokimeka Temorinki

    Tokimeka Temorinki7 days ago

    For someone who doesn't want to spend more than 18 minutes of listening this or speeding it up by 2. Some possible reasons: 1st - Lots of people in cities on foot so they need space for walking. 2nd - Less work during construction because there are less stumps to support the building. 3rd - They had animals and stocks in the lowest storey/floor so they did not use stumps in the first place, they did not even do the flooring. However this meant that the lowest storey/floor had to be the support for the building (it effected the material and the space of the lowest storey/floor). 4th - Architectural reasons (better stability for higher storeys/floors). 5th - It "looks good". The OFFICIAL reason: DEFENSE - there used to be holes in the floor, from where you could shoot arrows down on the men who tried to climb the wall and still were covered + you did not have to lean out and possibly kill yourself by falling down.). After that it was just a decoration.

  56. Andrea Angel

    Andrea Angel7 days ago

    And my first thought was, it was to give pedestrians a place to duck to should they hear a shout of "gardy-loo!" as they passed by.

  57. Graviler

    Graviler7 days ago

    hmm interestain very interestoin

  58. Madmanzinc

    Madmanzinc7 days ago

    I'VE PUNCHEd DOWN 900 T-REXs with my left arm and right hand..........in my hay day... jesus, i'm just waitin for those lil bastard 'aliens' to start their first attacks.... u know they won't giv a warnin... so i'll hav to giv the American president my 800 trillion dollar red alert intel wen that 'time' comes... uma hunt those russian spies downnnnn too. and every u.s. turncoat that will betray the free human. annnd ima hunt down that snake over there in the middle east, annnd ima hunt down a buncho islamic terrorists. alllllll wit my specially issued invisible 'purple/black' pistol... waitaminut! how could it be purple and black, at the same 'time'? watrrrrrrr all those galaxies in this universe doin overrr and out therrreeee? hahahahahahaha just wait u lil punks ... punk kids o terr firma is pissin me off.. .. ..don't make me angry, i'm alrrread angry bout your 'too hot' sun . do not make me go into focused rage mode .I'M SERIOUS. btw china's 4 million man army would get mowed down by my 2ndary demon hunting gun, if they chose to take sides wit the russians,,,, don't get me pissed off. . . ...i'll tell u the otherrrr rrrrrrreal reason why if I WANT to

  59. Andy Kashu

    Andy Kashu7 days ago

    Dunno when in the video he eventually comes to the point, so I stopped watching all this rambling about nullities to answer this simple question and had a quick look on a Wiki page instead: _'This has the advantage of increasing the available space in the building without obstructing the street.'_ That's it.

  60. waptek2

    waptek27 days ago

    TLDR = to increasing the available space in the building without obstructing the street.

  61. Oddvar Stallemo

    Oddvar Stallemo8 days ago

    Getiing? Can you spell that word please?

  62. rvmg

    rvmg8 days ago

    15:45 Imagine being an architect in medieval times -Ah, my liege welcome to your castle construction +Hi there lowborn smart person +Hmm, the top is too straight it needs to be jettying -But mey liege without machicolations it will serve no purpose +Silence, it looks good

  63. J Ray Throop

    J Ray Throop8 days ago

    I gave up....why?

  64. Mike Hermes

    Mike Hermes8 days ago

    Well done

  65. James Oldman

    James Oldman8 days ago

    Always lived where there is snow during the winter and thought it helped keep the sidewalks clear of snow:)

  66. Socrate

    Socrate8 days ago

    I believe it was also so that they could dump the contents of their chamberpots out of the windows without staining the facade of the house.

  67. The Rustorian

    The Rustorian8 days ago

    This is the style universal went for with diagon ally

  68. Korpi Fox

    Korpi Fox8 days ago

    I thought it was cuz they would empty their shit buckets out the windows and that way the neighbors below would beat theyre ass.

  69. Gamma King

    Gamma King8 days ago

    9:11 I Swear he was going to say defense against spiders, Because of Minecraft.

  70. arteblack13

    arteblack139 days ago

    It's harder for a second-story man to break in.

  71. Alex Noonan

    Alex Noonan9 days ago

    Your illustrations are fantastic

  72. Rabbit TeaPot

    Rabbit TeaPot9 days ago

    Well...I still prefer my theory! It’s so when you’re throwing your poop out onto the street it don’t hit your house wall lol Great video though! Very informative.

  73. Ryan Clay

    Ryan Clay9 days ago

    I paused this at 5 minutes into the video to say that to me my first idea that came to mind was to be able to pour boiling oil onto people who where attacking the property without any of the oil staining the building

  74. Derek Kelly

    Derek Kelly9 days ago

    Awesome and informative. It doesn't get much better than that. So glad I clicked.

  75. Eric D.

    Eric D.10 days ago

    I watched the whole video on 1x speed and don’t understand what the problem is. I thought the video was very well done. Everything everyone has ever said can be reduced to a TL:DR, that doesn’t mean the value of the TL:DR is equal to the value of the whole thing.

  76. NoComplicance

    NoComplicance10 days ago

    Now I want to turn my house into a castle.

  77. Lonnie Moore

    Lonnie Moore10 days ago

    Ok... I'll buy your explanation for the reasons behind jettying. Now, what's the reasoning behind the patterning on the external walls? Is it merely painted on? Is it architectural? I've been puzzled by that patterning for decades! Not puzzled enough to actually do any research on it, but every time I'd see it, I'd wonder about it! 🤔

  78. Liz Barnes

    Liz Barnes10 days ago

    I thought it was because they used to throw their waste out the windows...

  79. BFCrusader

    BFCrusader10 days ago

    I believe those "Machicolations" are also sometimes referred to as "Murder Holes". Or at least that is so according to Age of Empires II. I know that the game is not supposed to be taken as a reliable source of historical data, but I think that particular term is correct.

  80. The Goth King

    The Goth King10 days ago

    Can't the enemy shoot up through the machicolations as well?

  81. Al Feyerabend

    Al Feyerabend7 days ago

    In theory, yes. But the defenders have the advantage of being much closer to the holes. Think of shooting out of a window vs. trying to shoot into a window from a distance. If I'm at the window shooting through it, I have a pretty wide range of angles I can shoot; the person shooting into the window has a very narrow angular range.

  82. King Wither The Third

    King Wither The Third11 days ago

    "It looks good. Reeeeally good."

  83. mynameisawesomeman

    mynameisawesomeman11 days ago

    Wasn't another factor that house tax levels were based on the ground floor sq footage?

  84. Cindy Grey

    Cindy Grey11 days ago

    They threw the contents of their chamber pots out the windows.

  85. Mark Mywords

    Mark Mywords11 days ago

    Because when they threw out their dead the bodies wouldn't get hooked up on shit

  86. Patrice Laborda

    Patrice Laborda11 days ago

    It's because of this type of houses that we "picture" British with umbrella, as umbrellas became very-very popular in UK after the ban of this type of house. Before the great fire of London you can walk in the street without getting wet by the rain

  87. Sandro Paz DG

    Sandro Paz DG11 days ago

    I thought it was to make it harder for rats to climb from the outside. Somewhere I read that some granaries had a gap between floors for that very pourpose.

  88. Joel McCoy

    Joel McCoy11 days ago

    Its because of weathering by precipitation. Water oxidises and rots everything even morter. If you jetty your Building you Need only maintain the Roof.

  89. bambambambino

    bambambambino12 days ago

    because of walking. And when cows caught the plague they walked in circles and made crazy paths.

  90. Sadpants McGee

    Sadpants McGee12 days ago

    Being anywhere near that Picasso fuckery going on at 2:35 would make me hella nervous.

  91. Carelli Collectables

    Carelli Collectables12 days ago

    I'm guessing you didn't intend this video as a "how to make convincing medieval LEGO buildings" tutorial, but that's what it is. :P

  92. Vernon682

    Vernon68212 days ago

    I have no idea how I got here, I don't know about architecture, and don't really care about architecture, but I not only learned something, but now I'm genuinely interested in this.

  93. Lt. Kettch

    Lt. Kettch12 days ago

    Why is this guy the only guy on YT to be on his ass the entire video?

  94. James Lysander

    James Lysander12 days ago

    Before watching guess: probably to get more "land" without violating laws, or for the poop buckets

  95. deprived

    deprived12 days ago

    this video shouldnt have taken more than 5 minutes to get to the point

  96. Al Feyerabend

    Al Feyerabend7 days ago

    Maybe you should've looked it up on Twitter instead of MReporter.

  97. Ferintosh Farms Photography

    Ferintosh Farms Photography12 days ago

    So ezio can climb them duh

  98. Aleksandr Podyachev

    Aleksandr Podyachev12 days ago

    I think that it might be to protect to base from rain

  99. theirhighness

    theirhighness12 days ago

    It was because in medieval times they would throw their trash out from the window. This way, when you throw shit from the third floor, it doesn't fly into the second floor window. Very simple.

  100. Stilwater P.D.

    Stilwater P.D.12 days ago

    Hey there Shad, Just found your channel, started with your newer video on how castles are designed, and absolutely love it! Had a quick question for you. I really haven't been able to find anything on the subject, so wanted to pick your brain. In my designing my own medieval cities, I always get stuck with buildings near the castle walls. Were most city / citizen buildings built into city walls, at least adjacent to, or were they separated by a pathway or something of that sort? Thanks a lot and keep up the awesome work!, Surly

  101. Mike Collins

    Mike Collins12 days ago

    It seems like the principal reason for it was - fashion.

  102. trophywolfe

    trophywolfe12 days ago

    2:36 didn't they use to toss waste buckets out the windows?