With that said...on a DESIGN note, Bradley University, where my son is going, has a lot of gothic architecture that I really admire! I have always loved the stately, medieval, somewhat ominous feel of gothic architecture so let me enlighten you a bit.
Henry Ives Cobb designed the buildings at Bradley U in a style popular during the late 19th and early 20th centuries known as Collegiate Gothic. It's a subcategory of the Gothic Revival period and can also be found at Princeton, Yale, and Duke. Gargoyles and intricate arches were a popular feature. Mr. Cobbs is well known for bringing his Romanesque and Gothic touches to numerous public and private institutions in the Chicago area at the turn of the century.
Gargoyles date back to the 13th century. The were originally intended as waterspouts and drains to keep rainwater from damaging the mortar foundations of buildings. The word gargoyle comes from the French word gargouille, meaning “throat” describing the “gurgling” sound made by water as it ran through the figure. Pretty cool tidbit to know, huh? I'd much rather have a gargoyle instead of the contemporary drainpipes of today!
However, now that we have drainpipes (ick), gargoyles are primarily decorative. In addition to originally being functional, they were also suggested as a means to ward off evil spirits.
Carpe Diem! Susan