Changes of Compositional Features of Church Villages in Rural Landscape
Church villages form a significant part in the urban framework of Lithuania and they are inseparable components of the cultural landscape. Beginning with the end of the 18th century church villages had fully functioned together with towns and village settlements of the country. Their functional development and formation of the urban structure are closely related with the expansion of Christianity in Lithuania. Formation of compositional links between church villages and the rural landscape was mainly influenced by their urban structure determined by the canons of the Catholic Church. The network of church villages had determined the cultural distinctiveness of Lithuanian rural landscape till the middle of the 20th century. Considering that the preservation of identity and distinctiveness of Lithuanian countryside requires the analysis of church villages and their role in the country's landscape, this article analyzes the changes in compositional features of church villages in the spatial structure of the rural landscapes and the factors determining these changes. In order to perceive deeper their compositional features of the spatial structure in the ethno-cultural landscape, assessment of the aesthetic potential of the their layout and spatial structure is also presented.