Architecture Dictionary


The wastage of wood when lumber is sawed or planed to size.

A masonry mass (or the like) which receives the thrust of an arch, vault, or

strut. A supplement to bidding documents, issued prior to the submission of bids, for the purpose of clarifying, correcting, or adding to the specifications previously issued.

A small recessed space opening directly into a larger room. A passageway around the apse of a church.


Material, equipment, or method proposed by the contractor and approved by the architect for incorporation in or use in the work as equivalent in essential attributes to the material, equipment, or meth od specified in the contract document.

A semicircular or semipolygonal space usually in a church terminating an axis and intended to house an altar.

A light open structure of trees or shrubs closely planted either twined together or self supporting on a light lattice.

A line of counter thrusting arches raised on columns or piers.

A designation reserved, usually by law, for a person or organization professionally qualified and duly licensed to perform architectural service s.

A horizontal beam or lintel, that rests on columns or piers; or the lowest portion of an entablature; or a decorative molding around a door, a window, or an arch.

One of several parallel curved, and often decorated, moldings on the inside of an arched opening; a curved architrave.

Stone that has been cut square and dressed.

In classical architecture, an interior courtyard that is open to the weather. In contemporary architecture, a significant interior space, of ten sky lighted, used for circulation.

An entire railing system including top rail and its balusters, and sometimes

a bottom rail.

connecting either two parts of a building or two buildings. architect. safety. CATHEDRA: CAVETTO: The bishops throne.One of a number of short vertical members often circular in section used to support a stair handrail or a coping. A declaration in writing that a particular product or service complies with a specification or stated criterion. BASILICA: A narrow strip of wood applied to cover a joint along edges of two parallel boards in the same plane. and welfare. generally adopted and administered for the protection of public health. BUILDING CODES: A slight convex curvature built into a truss or beam to compensate for any anticipated deflection so that it will have no sag when under load. set at the end of the apse in early Christian churches. typically with a high central space lit by a clerestory and lower aisles all around it. including contingencies for bidding to contractors and for changes during construction. Construction Budget: The sum established by the owner as available for construction of the project. CELLA: The sanctuary of a classical temple. and contractor that authorizes a change in the work or an adjustment in the contract sum or the contract time or both. CERTIFICATION: An amendment to the construction contract signed by the owner. containing the cult statue of the god. . a pilaster or similar feature. A hollow member or round concave molding containing at least the quadrant of a circle used in cornices. CAMBER: CANTILEVER: CANTON: A structural member which projects beyond its supporting wall or column. BREEZEWAY: Regulations. BATTEN: BID: An offer to perform the work described in a contract at a specified cost. ordinances or statutory requirements o f a government unit relating to building construction and occupancy. BALUSTER: A Roman hall of justice. A covered passageway. CHANGE ORDER: CLERESTORY: An upper zone of wall pierced with windows that admit light to the center of a lofty room. open to the outdoors. A corner of a building decorated with a projecting masonry course.

orderliness. EASEMENT: ENTABULATURE: In classical architecture the elaborated beam member carried by the columns. a structural element that is shorter than usual. EURYTHMY: FASCIA: Harmony. rubbing. DORMER: DOVETAIL: DRESSED: A splayed tenon. shaped. as a stud above a door opening or below a windowsill. Any flat horizontal member or molding with little projection. such as right of way or free access to light or air. CONSTRUCTION DOCUMENTS: In masonry a projection or one of a series of projections each stepped progressively farther forward wi th height. A right of accommodation in land owned by another. DERRICK: A method of project delivery in which the owner contracts directly with a single entity that is responsible for both design and construction services for a construction project. usually has a vertical mast and a horizontal or sloping boom whose movement is controlled by wire rope. showing correct sizes and shapes for rooms. or stone which has been prepared. lumber. DESIGN DEVELOPMENT A structure projecting from a sloping roof usually housing a window or ventilating louver. square. toothlike blocks utilized in an ornamental manner. Descriptive of brick. In a building frame. . DESIGN/BUILD The architect prepares more detailed drawings and finalizes the design plans. or finished by cutting. Also included is an outline of the construction specifications. DENTIL: A band of small.A covered walk surrounding a court. CORBEL: CORNICE: CRIPPLE: Any molded projection which crowns or finishes the part which it is affixed. or sanding one or more surfaces. and elegance of proportion s. planing. CLOISTER: Drawings and specifications created by an architect that set forth in detail requirements for the construction of the project. A hoisting machine for heavy loads. listing the major materials to be used. broader at its end than at its base. shaped like a dove's tail. usually linking a church to other buildings of a monastery.

and visual privacy. GIRANDOLE: GROIN: A branched light holder. open on one or more sides. A shutter or blind with fixed or adjustable slats which exclude rain and provide ventilation. A portico having seven columns at one or both ends. A temporary construction to contain web concrete in the required shape while it is cast and setting. either standing on a base or projecting from a wall.FENESTRATION: FORMWORK: The arrangement and design of windows in a building. or curved line formed by the intersection of the surfaces of two intersecting vaults. A narrow window with a sharp pointed arch typically found in Gothic architecture. The external angle at the junction of two sloping roofs or sides of a roof. A frieze and cornice arranged and decorated in various ways for the lintel HYPOTHYRUM: of a door. often decorated wi th shells or stones and incorporating waterfalls or fountains. GROTTO: HAUNCH: The middle part between the crown and the springing of an arch. HEPTASTYLE: HIERON: HIP: The sacred enclosure of a temple or shrine. A natural or artificial cave. maintenance. The ridge. ie the luminou s flux per unit area. JALOUSIE: KEYSTONE: LANCET: In masonry the central often embellished voussoir of an arch. ILLUMINANCE: The luminous flux density incident on a surface. shade. and replacement costs of desired designs and features to assist homeowners in developing a realistic de sign and budget estimate. sometimes with an upper level. LIFE CYCLE COST ANALYSIS A horizontal structural member over an opening which carries the weight of the wall above it. LINTEL: An arcaded or colonnaded structure. edge. LOGGIA: . The architect calculates expected future operating.

four-sided stone shaft tapering to a pyramidal tip. MEGALITHIC: MEZZANINE: Structure built of unusually large stones. supported by regularly spaced post or columns. cavity. MORTISE: NAVE: NICHE: The middle aisle of a church. usually constructed above the ground floor.A crescent shaped or semicircular area on a wall or vaulted ceiling framed by an arch or vault. needs and function of the project. and site requirements. LUNETTE: MASTERSPEC: A proprietary master specification for the construction industry developed by the AIA. often latticed. PARAPET: In classical architecture. A public open space or square surrounded by buildings. A hole. The architect prepares a written statement setting forth design objectives. or recess cut into a timber or piece of another material usually receives a tenon. A colonnade in a straight line. . A recess in a wall usually to contain a sculpture or an urn. A monumental. originally a Buddhist monument crowned by a stupa. design expectations and available budget. OBELISK: ORTHOSTYLE: PAGODA: A multistoried shrine like tower. constraints. including special requirements and systems. PROGRAMMING PROJECT BUDGET The sum established by the owner as available for the entire project. pertinent building code and zoning regulations. PEDIMENT: A garden structure with an open wooden framed roof. as at the edge of a terrace. slot. notch. A low ceilinged story or extensive balcony. roof. The architect and homeowner first discuss the goals. A low guarding wall at any point of sudden drop. or balcony. and criteria for a project. PERGOLA: PERIPTERAL: PIAZZA: Surrounded by a single row of columns. the triangular gable end of the roof above the horizontal cornice.

No uniform standard for computing residential square footage yet exists. compensation for professional services. builders and realtors each measure square footage differently. contingency allowance. PROSCENIUM: In a theater. SPECIFICATIONS Can be calculated as both gross and net square footage. The addition of water and remixing of concrete or mortar which as started RETEMPERING: to stiffen. land costs. Square footage is not always an indication of the livable space available in a structure. and equipment. Architects. SCHEMATIC DESIGN SCUPPER: An opening in a wall or parapet that allows wat er to drain from a roof. the part of stage which lies between the curtains and the orchestra. costs of furnitu re. financing costs. Any rule prescribing permitted or forbidden conduct. volume. or embossing raised above a background plane. The architect also submits to the owner preliminary estimate of construction cost based on current area. QUADRIPARTITE: Divided by the system of construction employed. Buyers are encouraged to ask for an explanation of which spaces were included in the square footage calculation. REGULATION: RELIEF: Carving. SERVICE CONNECTION: The portion of service conductors between the last pole of the utility supply and the junction wit h service entrance conductors of the building supplied. construction systems. into four compartments. whether found in legislation or in the actions of an administrative agency. One of a continuous series of curves resembling segments of a circle used as a decorative element. as a vault. or other unit costs. equipment. SERVICE DROP: A part of the construction documents contained in the project manual consisting of written requirements for materials. standards and workmanship. chasing.including the construction budget. and similar established or estimated costs. SCALLOP: The architect consults with the owner to determine the requirements of the project and prepares schematic studies consisting of drawings and other documents illustrating the scale and re lationships of the project components for approval by the owner. furnishings. cost of owner furnished goods and services. SQUARE FOOTAGE . An electrical connector that attaches the utility company's conductors to the customer's wiring.

XYST: YOKE: The horizontal piece forming the head of a window or door frame. VOMITORY: A wedge shaped masonry unit in an arch or vault whose converging sides are cut as radii of one of the centers of the arch or vault. In medieval church architecture. VOUSSOIR: A decorative or protective facing applied to the lower portion of an interior partition or wall. UNDERLAYMENT: VISTA: A usually unobstructed view into the distance. lime. TRAVERTINE: TRELLIS: A variety of limestone deposited by springs. which are mixed with water. or other material. WEEP HOLE: In classical architecture. The curvilinear openwork shapes of stone or wood creating a pattern within the upper part of a Gothic window. WAINSCOT: A small opening in a wall or window member. which is reduced in cross section. opened to at least one side for exercising in bad weather. The projecting end of a piece of wood. of either metal or wood. usually textured composed of portland cement. TRIFORIUM: A material such as plywood placed on a subfloor to provide a smooth even surface for applying the finish. An entrance or opening usually one of a series which pierce a ban k of seats in a stadium. An open grating or latticework. The control by a municipality of the use of land and buildings. a shallow passage above the arches of the nave and choir and below the cleresto ry. TORCHERE: TRACERY: An indirect floor lamp which sends all or nearly all of its light upward. so that it may be inserted into a corresponding c avity. to form a secure joint. STUCCO: TABERNACLE: TENON: A decorative niche often topped with a canopy and housing a statue. and sand.An exterior finish. a roofed colonnade. a mortise. through which accumulated condensation or water may drain to the buildings exterior. usually banded. ZONING: .

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