ANTAE: Side walls projecting beyond the gable walls of early churches.
ANTECHAMBER: A chamber or room leading to a more important apartment.
ARCADE: A range of arches carried on piers or columns.
ARCHITRAVE: Decorated frame of door or window surround.
BARREL VAULT: A simple form of stone vault with a continuous semicircular profile.
BARTIZAN: Projecting floorless turret supported on corbels and used defensively at the top corner of a structure. When it is placed at a lower floor it may be called a wall bartizan.
BATTER: The inward sloping of a wall-face. The stronger inclination at the foot of a wall being called a base-batter or talus.
BATTLEMENTS: A parapet, usually divided into short lengths or merlons by regularly placed openings or embrasures. Also called CRENELLATION
BAWN: Enclosing defensive wall around a castle or abbey.
BAYS: Vertical division of a structure based on structures such as doors or windows.
BELLCOTE: (or bell-cot). A small stone structure housing bells on a roof.
BELFRY: Part of a steeple or tower in which bells are hung.
BULLAUN: A hollowed-out basin in the surface of a stone.
CASEMATE: A vaulted, loop-holed chamber projecting into the fosse of a fortification.
CASEMENT: A moulding surrounding a window light or group of lights, bounding the recess in which the lights are set.
CENTERING: Temporary wooden framework used to support an arch or vault during construction. Sometimes used with wicker mats which leave behind WICKER MARKS .
CHAMFER: A bevel or slope made by cutting off the edge of anything right-angled.
CHANCEL: The east end of a church in which the main altar is placed, sometimes divided from the nave by a chancel arch or a Rood Screen.
CHEVRON: A V-shaped ornament, superficial or moulded. A succession of chevrons produces the zig-zag effect.
CHI RHO: Monogram of Christ's name in in Greek characters.
COPING: A capping or covering of a wall, either flat or sloping, to throw off rainwater.
CORBEL: A projection of stone jutting out from a wall to support a beam or other stonework.
CLASSIC: Appertaining to the Classic styles of architecture of Greece and Rome or the Renaissance architecture based upon them.
CRENELLATION: see BATTLEMENT
CROW-STEPS: or "Corbie steps," the stepped form of gable slope. A characteristic Scottish feature derived, probably from the architecture of the Low Countries.
DRAWBAR: A wooden bar inside a door or window shutter which is drawn into a socket behind one jamb and when not in use slides into a long channel behind the other jamb.
EMBRASURE: The recess for doorways or windows, or the opening in a parapet wall between the merlons.
FINIAL: The ornament at the apex of a gable.
FLANKING TOWERS: The corner tower of a bawn, or the projecting towers at the corners of a castle or a fortified house.
FORE-BUILDING: A building, taking various forms, immediately in front of the elevated main doorway of a 13th century keep.
FORE-WORK: A fortification of earth or stone built in advance of the main works.
FOSSE: A ditch or moat, either dry or wet, especially one which has contributed the material from which the fortress it encloses has been constructed.
GARDEROBE: A latrine or privy, leading to a latrine chute.
GROIN-RIB: A groin is the line in which two vaults running at a right or other angle meet. A groin rib is a narrow arch-rib of brick or stone in this position.
HANGING-EYE: A projecting stone with a socket to hold the upper part of a door hinge.
HAUNCH: The haunch of an arch or vault is the middle part, between the springing and the crown of the arch; especially the mass of material in this position.
HOOD-MOULDING: A narrow, plain or moulded projecting band of stone over the lintel, or arch of a window or door. It usually bends or returns downwards at the ends of the lintel and bends again outwards and downward or finishes in a narrow point or a carved ornament. Dripstone and label are other names for the same feature.
JACOBEAN: The style of architecture prevalent in England in the period of James I (1603-1625).
JAMB: The side of a door, window or other opening.
JOGGLE: A notching of the voussoirs of an arch or the stones of a lintel to prevent them sliding.
LANCET: A tall narrow window with a pointed head.
LIGHT: A smll single window opening or individual opening between mullions and jambs.
LINTEL: A horizontal stone or beam spanning an opening.
LOBBY: A passage inside a main entrance leading to the stairway or several apartments.
LOFT: The storage space under the vault in a tower-house.
LOOP: A small narrow light in a wall or at a corner, used for the release of arrow or gunshot.
MACHICOLATION: A projecting parapet supported on corbels, from which missiles could be dropped on assailants. Usually found over the main entrance but sometimes extending the entire length of a wall. Sometimes called a machicoulis.
MERLONS: Short sections of solid wall in a battlement between the openings or embrasures.
MULLION: An upright between the lights of a window-a window of two lights has one mullion; of three lights, two mullions and so on.
MURAL PASSAGE: A passage in the thickness of a wall. Similarly a mural staircase or stairs is one contained in the thickness of a wall.
MURDER-HOLE: An aperture in a floor or vault over a doorway or an entrance lobby or passage, through which the defenders could fire upon assailants who had gained an entrance. Sometimes called a murdering-hole.
NAVE: The main body of a church west of the chancel, for use of the congregation.
OSSUARY: A place where bones are laid.
OUBLIETTE: A prison chamber usually hidden within the thickness of a wall or within the springing of a vault. It is usually windowless and entered from a small hole in the roof.
PARAPET: A low wall placed at the edge of a roof for protection. It is often crenellated.
PEEL or PELE: A name applied to castles, especially the small towers, in the border lands of England and Scotland.
PERIMETER: The circuit, "trace" or boundary of a fortress.
PILASTER: A flat, usually rectangular and not prominent, column-like projection from a wall.
PISCINA: A basin with a drain-hole for washing sacred vessels, usually set in a small niche in the chancel. Piscinas are often found in pairs with one of the basins without the drain-hole.
PLINTH: A flat-faced projecting band at the base of a wall, or the square block under the base of a column.
QUOINS: The stones, usually dressed, at the corners of a building.
REBATE: A rectangular groove or slot cut along a face or angle, often for the purpose of receiving a door or shutter.
REDAN: An angular shaped defensive projection, not unlike a casemate.
RENAISSANCE: The architecture of the Classic Renaissance, which spread over Europe from Italy in the 15th century, first reaching these islands in the 16th century. It is characterized by the use of Classic forms of mouldings and decorations in the place of the medieval Gothic forms. It reached its highest development here in such buildings as the Custom House, Dublin.
ROLL-MOULDING: A moulding of round, nearly circular section.
ROOD-SCREEN: An ornamental partition separating the chancel from the nave.
SCOTS-BARONIAL: The native style of Scottish building in the 16th and 17th centuries, characterized by "crow-stepped" gables, numerous turrets or "bartizans" with candle-extinguisher roofs, or gabled windows of vertical rather than broad proportions, and Renaissance ornamental features around windows and especially doorways.
SEDILIA: The seats for the priest, deacon and subdeacon officiating at Mass, usually built into the south wall of the chancel.
SHELL-KEEP: A stone walled mote; i.e. where a stone wall, or a more or less circular trace, has been substituted for the mote palisade. There are many English examples.
SKEWBACK: The sloping stone from which an arch starts at the jamb of an opening.
SLOP-STONE: A stone channel through the wall for the disposal of waste liquid.
SOFFITE: The under surface of a lintel, an arch, or a vault.
SPUD-STONE: A stone with a socket to hold the lower part of a door hinge.
SQUINCH: An arch, or corbelling, spanning the angle between two wall faces which are at an angle with one another.
STILE: The upright member of a door. The hanging stile is that which is pivoted or hinged; the other is the slapping stile.
STOUP: A vessel to contain holy water, near a church doorway. It is often a hollowed stone set in the wall.
STRING-COURSE: A narrow, horizontal, plain or moulded course of stone.
SURROUND: The masonry framing an opening such as a window or a door.
TOMB NICHE: Arched recess in the internal face of a church used to house a tomb.
TRACERY: Ornamental intersecting work in the upper part of a window.
TRANSOM: A horizontal member dividing the upper from the lower lights of a window.
VAULT: The curved roof or ceiling to any chamber. This can be semicircular or pointed. A semicircular vault is sometimes called a barrel vault. To construct a vault a temporary structure of the required shape is usually built. This is called CENTERING or falsework. It is usually covered by wicker mats and the vault is then constructed from small stones embedded in mortar. When the mortar has dried the centering is removed. WICKER MARKS and sometimes fragments of the wicker mats can be found in the dried mortar of the vault.
VOUSSOIR: Any stone in an arch.
WALL-WALK: Walkway positioned outside a roof and behind the parapet of a castle or church. Also called an alure.
WARD: The courtyard of a castle.
WICKER MARKS: Traces left behind in the mortar of the underside of a vault, caused by the wicker mats used in CENTERING