In medieval days How much time it will take to build 3 floors building, with 10 apartment’s each floor? I don’t have labor problems, so I can use as much as I need. How many workers do I need for 1 building? The stones and timber arrive at the site ready to use. What other materials do I need?

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    $\begingroup$ Apartment blocks weren't really a thing in medieval architecture, so some more definition is required regarding what you mean. What's the floor area / number of rooms per apartment? Does each have a separate fireplace or are there communal cooking areas (probably on the ground floor)? What climate is this building in? Note also that this is a strictly one question per question site, so while you can probably combine the how many people / how many workers into how many man/days of work, additional materials for an average should be separate (better asked on History SE) $\endgroup$ Sep 2, 2022 at 2:07
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    $\begingroup$ (1) "In medieval days" could mean Eboracum (= modern York) in 600 CE, or it could mean Constantinople in 900 CE, or it could mean Paris in 1200 CE. Not the same. Please choose a time and a place. (2) Why do you want to build an inn out of stone? Why not brick, or wood? Or is it a palace? Please choose a type of building. (3) You need lots of materials, just like a modern building. Tiles for the roof, mortar, plaster. What do you want to make the floors of, for example? (4) What kind of terrain? Digging foundations in loose earth or in stone are different exercises. $\endgroup$
    – AlexP
    Sep 2, 2022 at 2:17
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    $\begingroup$ Also medieval buildings were seldom even two stories because that meant a chimney -- otherwise smoke would render the upper story unusable -- which meant that most of the heat went up the chimney thus sending your firewood bill sky high. $\endgroup$
    – Mary
    Sep 2, 2022 at 3:54
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    $\begingroup$ Hello Shimshi, welcome to Worldbuilding. Please take our tour and read the following two pages to better acquaint yourself with our Stack (help center and help center). There are some problems with your question. The medieval period was approx. 5th - 15th centuries. That's a thousand years, and what they could do at the beginning and the end were different depending on both when you were and where you were, so: (a) exactly what year should we consider and (b) exactly where should we consider? Without this data your Q is not on-topic for the Stack. $\endgroup$
    – JBH
    Sep 2, 2022 at 5:13
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    $\begingroup$ your edit, placing the time well before medieval times, invalidates the existing answer $\endgroup$
    – L.Dutch
    Sep 2, 2022 at 14:09

1 Answer 1


Consider the Eatons building, which previously stood in downtown Winnipeg. This was a wooden structure with a brick facade. You can see the wooden structure in the picture showing its demolition.

Note that the upper 3 floors of this building were added within one year.

This demolition was a major challenge because it was wooden. Any small dislocation of the structure did not tend to propagate very far due to the many thousands of nails holding the wood together. It was necessary to grab each part and pull it off the rest with power equipment. This was an incredibly laborious process that required many months.

Eatons Building Demolition

Walking through this building was an interesting experience because the floors squeaked quite loudly with each step. Small dislocations tended not to propagate, but also not to settle. So a board that was loose would stay that way and not go anywhere.

Mass produced nails did not appear until well after the medieval period, about the year 1800. Therefore, the most probable construction process would be some sort of framing. This Wikipedia article gives some description of this process. The most probable construction method would be some combination of wood timbers and brick-and-mortar. This allows for the minimum number of nails or joins or the like, which would have been labor intense and require significant skills to perform correctly. When each nail has to be made individually by a blacksmith, a brick wall is usually faster, easier, and cheaper than fastening a lot of boards together with nails.

The limits would likely be the availability of dressed timber, bricks, and mortar, and the workmen to put them together. You are going to want a town with a sawmill and a proper kiln to make the bricks.

A 3 floor building would not be too unusual in a town of some thousands or bigger. All the construction work would, of course, be done using muscle. Either human or draft animal. So very roughly, it would be some 100s of workers, probably some dozens of horses, and some months to possibly a couple years.

  • $\begingroup$ "require significant skills" I'm not so sure joinery really requires all that much skill, they teach the basics of it to school kids in shop in fairly short order (or at least used to) .. granted the materials used weren't the great big bits of wood you would use for a house but the principles are the same and I don't remember it taking all that long to become at least marginally proficient? $\endgroup$
    – Pelinore
    Sep 2, 2022 at 3:42
  • $\begingroup$ You were also using high quality tools. $\endgroup$ Sep 2, 2022 at 3:56
  • $\begingroup$ @SoronelHaetir and we would be using what we might term "high quality tools" for the simple carpentry building a house or inn in "medieval days" entails? .. I don't think so .. and just how "high quality" pray tell do you imagine a hammer or chisel can be? or do you perhaps believe they had power tools back then? $\endgroup$
    – Pelinore
    Sep 2, 2022 at 7:25

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