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Architectural Topics to Study for the Miller Analogies Test (MAT)

For the Miller Analogies Test, you should become familiar with famous examples of architecture — like the Roman Colosseum. On the MAT, architecture isn’t as big of a category as art, so covering the bases can be a little easier. The following lists familiarize you with some of history’s most important architecture and architects and give you the building blocks of architectural terminology.

Architectural terms that appear on the MAT test

Brush up on your knowledge of architecture by studying these terms and their definitions.

  • Amphitheatre: An open-air venue for performances

  • Aqueduct: Pipeline that carries water

  • Atrium: Roman entrance chamber

  • Bas-relief: Type of sculpture in which the shape protrudes slightly from its background

  • Cameo: Raised carving; opposite of intaglio

  • Catacombs: underground burial chambers

  • Corinthian Order: Greek style of architecture that was very ornate featuring leaves and scrolls

  • Doric Order: Greek style of architecture where the columns were close together and not on a base

  • Façade: Front of a building

  • Gargoyle: Human or animal statue placed on the roof of a building

  • Gothic Architecture: Style of architecture characterized by high arches and flying buttresses

  • Hieroglyphs: Egyptian language that uses pictorial characters

  • Intaglio: Indented carving; opposite of cameo

  • Ionic Order: Greek style of architecture that prominently features volutes

  • Odeon: Ancient Greek and Roman building for musical purposes

  • Pagoda: Buddhist shrine or tomb

  • Rococo: Ornate, playful, asymmetric architectural style

  • Ziggurat: Mesopotamian pyramid made of bricks

Important architects that appear on the MAT test

The following lists important architects you should become familiar with before taking the MAT.

  • Gaudi, Antoni: Spanish architect best known for the incomplete Sagrada Familia

  • Gehry, Frank: Designer of the Spanish Guggenheim museum

  • Jefferson, Thomas: American president who designed Monticello

  • Le Corbusier: Swiss-French pioneer of modern architecture

  • Mies van der Rohe, Ludwig: German-American pioneer of modern architecture; known for his simplicity

  • Mills, Robert: American architect who designed the Washington Monument

  • Pei, I. M.: Chinese-American architect who designed many skyscrapers

  • Sinan, Mimar: Ottoman architect who designed mosques

  • Sullivan, Louis: American creator of the modern skyscraper

  • Wren, Christopher: English architect who rebuilt many churches in London after the Great Fire

  • Wright, Frank Lloyd: American architect who merged buildings with the landscapes in which they were built

Important architectural works that appear on the MAT test

The following lists important architectural works you should become familiar with before taking the MAT.

  • Capitol: Government building in Washington, D.C., that houses the U.S. legislature

  • Colosseum: Roman amphitheatre in which gladiatorial contests took place

  • Great Sphinx: Statue at the pyramids of Giza in the shape of a lion with a man’s head

  • Hagia Sophia: Church in Istanbul, Turkey

  • Notre Dame: Cathedral in Paris, France

  • Pantheon: Roman temple

  • Parthenon: Greek temple to the goddess Athena built on the acropolis in Athens

  • St. Peter’s Basilica: Roman Catholic church in the Vatican

  • Stonehenge: Group of stones forming a monument in England

  • Taj Mahal: Famous Indian mausoleum

  • Versailles: French palace built by Louis XIV

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