GLOSSARY OF THE MEANING ATTACHED TO THE TECHNICAL TERMS
USED IN THE INVENTORIES
Abacus—The uppermost member of a capital.
Acanthus—A plant represented in Classical and Renaissance ornament, used particularly in the Corinthian and Composite Orders.
Achievement—In heraldry, the shield accompanied by the appropriate
external ornamants, helm, crest, mantling, supporters, etc. In the
plural the term is also applied to the insignia of honour carried
at the funerals and suspended over the monuments of important
personages, comprising helmet and crest, shield, tabard, sword,
gauntlets and spurs, banners and pennons.
Acroteria—In Classical architecture, blocks on the apex and lower
ends of a pediment, often carved with honeysuckle or palmette
Aedicule—A small temple or similar shrine, or a miniature representation of the same. A surround to a doorway, niche or window
having a pediment or canopy resting on pillars and suggestive of a
small and exquisite building.
Agger—The earthen ridge carrying a Roman road.
Alabaster Table—A panel or series of panels of alabaster carved with
religious subjects and placed at the back of an altar to form a
reredos. The manufacture was a distinctively English industry of
the 14th, 15th and early 16th centuries, centred at Nottingham.
Alb—Long linen robe, with close sleeves; worn by clerks of all grades.
Alerion.—In heraldry, an eagle without beak or feet.
Altar-tomb—A modern term for a tomb of stone or marble resembling, but not used as, an altar.
Amess—Fur cape with hood, and long tails in front; worn by clerks
of the higher grades.
Amice—A linen strip with embroidered apparel (q.v.) placed upon
the head coifwise by a clerk before vesting himself in an alb, after
which it is pushed back and the apparel then appears like a collar.
Annulet—In heraldry, a ring.
Anta-ae—In Classical architecture, a pilaster terminating a range of
columns in the manner of a respond, with base and capital differing
from those of the columns. In antis—Placed in a line between
Antefixes—In Classical architecture, small ornamental blocks fixed at
intervals along the verge of a roof to conceal the ends of the
Anthemion—Honeysuckle or palmette ornament in Classical architecture.
Apparels—Rectangular pieces of embroidery on alb, amice, etc.
Apse—A projection from the wall of a church, hall or other building,
semicircular or polygonal on plan, usually covered with a semidome or vault.
Arabesque—A kind of highly stylised fret-ornament in low relief,
common in Moorish architecture, and found in 16th and 17th-century work in England.
Arcade—A range of arches carried on piers or columns. Blind arcade,
a series of arches, frequently interlaced, carried on shafts or
pilasters against a solid wall.
Arch—The following are some of the most usual forms:—
Equilateral—A pointed arch struck with radii equal to the span.
Flat or straight—Having the soffit horizontal.
Four-centred, depressed, Tudor—A pointed arch of four arcs, the two
outer and lower arcs struck from centres on the springing line and
the two inner and upper arcs from centres below the springing
line. Sometimes the two upper arcs are replaced by straight lines.
Lancet—A pointed arch struck with radii greater than the span.
Nodding—An ogee arch curving also forward from the plane of the
Ogee—A pointed arch of four or more arcs, the two uppermost
being reversed, i.e., convex instead of concave to the base line.
Pointed or two-centred—Two arcs struck from centres on the springing
line, and meeting at the apex with a point.
Relieving—An arch, generally of rough construction, placed in the
wall above the true arch or head of an opening, to relieve it of
most of the superincumbent weight.
Segmental—A single arc struck from a centre below the springing
Segmental-pointed—A pointed arch, struck from two centres below
the springing line.
Skew—Spanning between responds not diametrically opposite.
Stilted—An arch with its springing line raised above the level of the
Three-centred, elliptical—Formed with three arcs, the middle or uppermost struck from a centre below the springing line.
Archbishop's Vestments—Buskins, sandals, amice, alb, girdle, stole,
maniple, tunic, dalmatic, chasuble, pall, gloves, ring, mitre; an
archbishop carries a crosier but, in later times, holds a cross-staff
Architrave—The lowest member of an entablature (q.v.); often
adapted as a moulded enrichment to the jambs and head of a doorway or window-opening.
Archivolt—In Classical architecture, the moulding round an arch.
Argent—In heraldry, white or silver.
Armet—A close-helmet. Restricted in modern usage to the type in
use in the 15th century with hinged cheek-pieces overlapping on
Arris—The sharp edge formed by the meeting of two surfaces. On
Ashlar—Masonry wrought to an even face and square edges.
Attired—In heraldry, applied to the antlers of a buck, stag, etc. when
of a different tincture from the body.
Aumbry—Cupboard in a church for housing the sacred vessels.
Aventail or Camail—A tippet of mail attached to the bascinet to
protect the throat and neck, and falling to the shoulders.
Azure—In heraldry, blue.
Bailey—The courtyard of a castle.
Baldacchino—A canopy, suspended or on pillars, over an altar or
Ball-flower—In architecture, a decoration, peculiar to the first
quarter of the 14th century, consisting of a globular flower of
three petals enclosing a small ball.
Baluster—A vertical support to a rail.
Barge-board—A board, often carved, fixed to the edge of a gabled
roof, a short distance from the face of the wall.
Baronet's Badge—In heraldry, an escutcheon argent with the Red
Hand of Ulster borne upon a baronet's shield.
Baroque—A style of architecture and decoration emerging in the
17th century which uses the repertory of classical forms with
great freedom to emphazise the unity and pictorial character of
its effects. The term is also applied to sculpture and painting of a
Disc—A small burial mound separated from its encircling ditch by
a relatively wide space.
Bell-disc—Similar but with a larger mound and relatively lesser
Barry—In heraldry, an even number of horizontal divisions in a
shield, normally six, but sometimes four or eight. When a greater
and indefinite number of divisions appear the word Burely or
Barruly is used.
Bascinet—Steel head-piece, egg-shaped with pointed apex, usually
worn with an aventail, and fitted with a vizor.
Bastion—A projection from the general outline of a fortress or work
from which the garrison is able to see, and defend by a flanking
fire, the ground before the ramparts.
Bastion-trace Fort—A 17th-century type of fort with projecting
angles or bastions.
Bays—The main vertical divisions of a building or feature. The divisions of a roof, marked by its main trusses.
Beading—A small round moulding.
Beaker—A type of pottery vessel of the early second millenium B.C.
representing a British variant of the Continental Bell-Beaker and
Corded-Ware ceramic traditions.
Beaker People—The brachycephalic physical type associated with
pottery of Beaker type (q.v.).
Beaver—A defence for the lower part of the face.
Bell-disc Barrow—See Barrow.
Bend—In heraldry, a diagonal band crossing the shield from dexter
chief to sinister base; a bend sinister runs from sinister chief to
dexter base. Per bend—Applied to the field or to a charge divided
bendwise with a difference of tincture on either side.
Bendwise—In the direction of a bend.
Berm—In earthworks, the level strip of ground between a bank and
its accompanying ditch or scarp.
Bezant—In heraldry, a gold roundel or disc.
Billet—In architecture, an ornament used in the 11th and 12th centuries consisting of short attached cylinders or rectangles with
spaces between. In heraldry, a small upright oblong charge.
Billety—In heraldry, a field or charge powdered with billets.
Bishop's Vestments—Similar to an archbishop's (q.v.) but without a
pall, and a bishop carries a crosier and not a cross.
Bolection-moulding—A bold moulding of double curvature raised
above the general plane of the framework of a door, fireplace or
Bond, English or Flemish—See Brick-work.
Border—In heraldry, an edging of a different tincture from the field.
Boss—A projecting square or round ornament, covering the intersections of the ribs in a vault, panelled ceiling or roof, etc.
Bouget or Water-bouget—A pair of leather bottles, borne as a
Brace—In roof construction, a subsidiary timber inserted to strengthen
the framing of a truss. Wind-brace, a subsidiary timber inserted
between the purlins and principals of a roof to increase resistance
Brattishing—Ornamental cresting on the top of a screen, cornice,
Bressummer—A spanning beam forming the direct support of an upper
wall or timber-framing.
Brick-work—Header—A brick laid so that the end only appears on the
face of the wall.
Stretcher—A brick laid so that one side only appears on the face of
English Bond—A method of laying bricks so that alternate courses on
the face of the wall are composed of headers or stretchers only.
Flemish Bond—A method of laying bricks so that alternate headers
and stretchers appear in each course on the face of the wall.
English Garden Wall Bond—Bricks laid with three courses of stretchers
to one of headers.
Broach-stop—A half-pyramidal stop against a chamfer to effect the
change from chamfer to right angle.
Burgonet—An open steel head-piece, lighter than the close-helmet,
and usually with a peak over the eyes and hinged ear-pieces.
Buttress—A mass of masonry or brick-work projecting from or
built against a wall to give additional strength.
Angle-buttresses—Two meeting, or nearly meeting, at an angle of
90° at the corner of a building.
Clasping-buttress—One that clasps or encases an angle.
Diagonal-buttress—One placed against the right angle formed by two
walls, and more or less equiangular with both.
Flying-buttress—An arch or half-arch transmitting the thrust of a
vault or roof from the upper part of a wall to an outer support.
Cable-moulding—A moulding carved in the form of a rope or cable.
Cabossed—In heraldry, applied to the head of a beast shown full-face
and without a neck.
Cambered—Curved so that the middle is higher than the ends or sides.
Canonical Choir-habit—Surplice, amess, cope.
Canons (of a bell)—The metal loops by which a bell is hung.
Canopy—A projection or hood over a door, window, etc., and the
covering over a tomb or niche.
Canton—In heraldry, a rectangle in the corner of the shield in dexter
Cartouche—In Renaissance ornament, a tablet imitating a scroll with
ends rolled up, used ornamentally or bearing an inscription or
Caryatid—Sculptured female figure used as column or support.
Casement—1. A wide hollow moulding in window-jambs etc.
2. The hinged part of a window.
Cassock—Long, close-sleeved gown; worn by all clerks.
Castor Ware—A colour-coated ware made in potteries near Castor
(Northants.) and elsewhere from the late 2nd century A.D.
Chalice—The name used in the Inventory to distinguish the pre-Reformation type of Communion cup with a shallow bowl from
the post-Reformation cup with a larger bowl.
Chamfer—The small plane formed when the sharp edge or arris of
stone or wood is cut away, usually at an angle of 45°; when the
plane is concave it is termed a hollow chamfer, and when the plane
is sunk a sunk chamfer.
Chantry-chapel—A chapel built for the purposes of a chantry (a
foundation, usually supporting a priest, for the celebration of
masses for the souls of the founder and such others as he may
Charge—In heraldry, the representation of an object or device upon
Chasuble—A nearly circular cape with a central hole for the head
worn by priests and bishops at mass. It is put on over all the other
Checky—In heraldry, a field or charge divided into squares or checkers.
Chevaux-de-frise—Iron spikes, originally set in timber to repel
cavalry, now usually along the tops of walls to protect property.
Cheveron—In heraldry, a charge resembling an inverted V; per
cheveron is applied to a field or charge divided cheveronwise with
a difference of tincture on either side. In architecture, a decorative
form similar to the foregoing and often used in a consecutive
Chief—In heraldry, a division occupying the upper part of the shield.
A charge is said to be in chief when placed in the top third of a
Chimaera—A fabulous monster with a lion's head, a goat's body and
a serpent's tail.
Chip-carving—Architectural enrichment of sunk triangular form
resembling chip-carved woodwork.
Choir-habit—In secular churches: for boys, a surplice only over the
cassock; for clerks or vicars, the surplice and a black cope-like
mantle, partly closed in front and put over the head, which was
exchanged for a silk cope on festivals; canons put on a grey amess
over the surplice. In monastic churches: for all classes, whether
canons regular, monks, friars, nuns, or novices, the ordinary
habit with a cope on festivals.
Cinquefoil—1. See Foil.
2. A heraldic flower of five petals.
Clearstorey—An upper storey, pierced by windows, in the main
walls of a church. The same term is applicable in a domestic
Close—Enclosure. In earthworks, an area enclosed by banks.
Close-helmet—A helmet fitted with vizor etc., completely enclosing
the head and face.
Cockatrice—In heraldry, usually drawn as a wyvern with a cock's
head, but occasionally as a cock with a dragon's tail.
Coffers—Sunk panels in ceilings, vaults, domes and arch-soffits.
Coif—Small close hood, covering head only.
Collar-beam—In a roof, a horizontal beam framed to and serving to
tie together a pair of rafters some distance above the wall-plate
Colonette—A small column.
Comb—The keel-shaped ridge on the top of a helmet.
Console—A bracket with a compound curved outline.
Cope—A processional and choir vestment shaped like a cloak, and
fastened across the chest by a band or brooch; worn by clerks of
Coped Slab—A slab of which the upper face is ridged down the
middle, sometimes hipped at each end.
Cops, Elbow—A modern term for elbow defences of leather or
plate, see Couter. Knee-cops, in modern usage applied to the
leather or plate defences of the knees at all dates, see Poleyn.
Corbel—A projecting stone or piece of timber for the support of a
superincumbent weight. Corbel-table—A row of corbels, usually
carved, and supporting a projection.
Cornice—A crowning projection. In Classical architecture, the
crowning or upper portion of the entablature.
Corona—The square projection in the upper part of a Classical
cornice with vertical face and wide soffit.
Cotises—In heraldry, pairs of narrow bands, in the form of bends,
pales, fesses, or cheverons, and accompanying one of those charges,
on each side of it.
Counter-changed—In heraldry, a term applied where the field and
charges exchange tinctures on either side of a dividing line.
Couped—In heraldry, of a head or limb cut off with a straight edge.
See also under Cross.
Courtyard Type of House—See Houses.
Couter—Elbow defence of leather or plate.
Cove—A concave under-surface of the nature of a hollow moulding
but on a larger scale.
Cover-paten—A cover to a communion cup, used as a paten.
Crenelles—The openings in an embattled parapet.
Crest, Cresting—1. A device worn upon the helm or helmet.
2. An ornamental finish along the top of a screen
Crockets—Carvings projecting at regular intervals from the vertical
or sloping sides of parts of a building, such as spires, canopies,
pinnacles, hood-moulds, etc.
Cronel—The crown-like head of a blunt tilting-lance.
Crop-mark—A trace of a levelled or buried feature revealed by
different growth of crops, especially after drought.
Crosier, or Pastoral Staff—A tall staff ending in an ornamental
crook carried as a mark of authority by archbishops, bishops, and
heads of monastic houses, including abbesses and prioresses.
Cross—In its simplest form in heraldry, a pale combined with a fesse,
as the St. George's Cross; of many other varieties the following
are the most common: Couped—with the four arms not extending
to the edge of the shield; Crosslet—with a smaller arm crossing
each main arm; Fitchy—having the lowest arm spiked or pointed;
Flowered or flory—having the arms headed with fleurs-de-lis;
Formy—arms widening from the centre, and square at the ends;
Moline (or mill-rind)—with the arms split or forked at the ends;
Paty—as a cross formy, but with the arms notched in two places
at the ends, giving them a form which may approach that of a
blunt head of a fleur-de-lis; Pommy—with the arms ending in a
ball like the pomme or pommel of a sword or walking-cane;
Potent—having a small transverse arm at the extreme end of each
main arm; Quadrate—with a small rectangular projection at each
angle as though the crossing was surcharged with a square; Saltire
(or St. Andrew's)—an X-shaped cross; Tau (or Anthony)—in the
form of a T; Trefly—with the arms terminating in a trefoil.
Cross-staff—Staff terminating in a cross; carried before archbishops.
On effigies, brasses, etc., the figures are usually shown holding it.
Cruck (or Crutch) Truss—See under Roofs.
Crusily—In heraldry, covered or powdered with crosslets.
Curtain—The connecting wall between the towers or bastions of a
Cushion-capital—A capital cut from a cube with its lower angles
rounded off to adapt it to a circular shaft.
Cusps (cusping, sub-cusps)—The projecting points forming the foils in
Gothic windows, arches, panels, etc.; they were frequently ornamented at the ends (cusp-points) with leaves, flowers, berries, etc.
Cyma—A moulding with a wave-like outline consisting of two
Dado—The separate protective or decorative treatment applied to
the lower parts of wall-surfaces to a height, normally, of 3 to
4 feet. Dado-rail, the moulding or capping at the top of the dado.
Dalmatic—The special vestment at mass of a deacon; a loose tunic
of moderate length, slit up the sides, with wide sleeves and fringed
Dance—In heraldry, a fesse or bar drawn zigzagwise, or dancetty.
Deacon's Vestments (Mass)—Amice, alb, stole (worn over left
shoulder), dalmatic, and maniple.
Dentils—The small rectangular tooth-like blocks used decoratively
in Classical cornices.
Dexter—In heraldry, the right-hand side of a shield as held.
Diaper—All-over decoration of surfaces with squares, diamonds, and
Die—The part of a pedestal between the base and the cornice.
Dimidiated—In heraldry, applied to the halving of two shields
vertically and joining a half of each to make a new shield.
Disc Barrow—See Barrow.
Dog-legged Staircase—See Staircases.
Dog-tooth Ornament—A typical 13th-century carved ornament
consisting of a series of pyramidal flowers of four petals; used to
cover hollow mouldings.
Dormer—A sleeping recess contrived as a projection from the slope
of a roof and having a roof of its own, usually unlighted but
occasionally with small lights in the cheeks.
Dormer-window—A vertical window on the slope of a roof and
having a roof of its own.
Dorter—A monastic dormitory.
Dovetail—A carpenter's joint for two boards, one with a series of
projecting pieces resembling doves' tails fitting into the other
with similar hollows; in heraldry, an edge formed like a dovetailjoint.
Drawbar—A wooden bar or bolt, inside a door, fitted into a socket
in one jamb and a long channel in the other jamb, into which it
slides back when not in use.
Dressings—The stone or brickwork used about an angle, window, or
other feature when worked to a finished face, whether smooth,
tooled or rubbed, moulded, or sculptured.
E Type of House—See Houses.
Eaves—The under part of a sloping roof overhanging a wall.
Embattled—In architecture, a parapet with merlons separated by
embrasures or crenelles. In heraldry, having an outline like a battlement.
Embrasures—The openings or sinkings in embattled parapets, or the
recesses for windows, doorways, etc.
Engrailed—In heraldry, edged with a series of concave curves.
Entablature—In Classical or Renaissance architecture, the moulded
horizontal superstructure of a wall, colonnade or opening. A
full entablature consists of an architrave, frieze, and cornice.
Entasis—The convexity or swell on a vertical line or surface, to correct the optical illusion of concavity in the sides of a column or
spire when the lines are straight.
Erased—In heraldry, a head or limb torn off, leaving a jagged edge.
Ermine—The fur most frequently represented in heraldry; white
powdered with black tails. Ermines—black powdered with white
Escarbuncle—In heraldry, an ornamental elaboration of the metal
reinforcement of a shield, drawn as eight batons tipped with
fleurs-de-lis radiating from a central boss.
Estoile—In heraldry, a star-like charge with wavy rays. Unless otherwise described it has six points.
Fascia—A plain or moulded facing board.
Fesse—In heraldry, a broad horizontal band across the shield. Where
more than one fesse is borne they are known as Bars. Per fesse—
applied to the field or to a charge divided fessewise with a
difference of tincture on either side.
Fimbriated—In heraldry, applied to a bend, cheveron, etc., with a
narrow border of a different tincture.
Finial—A formal bunch of foliage or similar ornament at the top of a
pinnacle, gable, canopy, etc.
Flanch or Flaunch—In heraldry, the segmental area formed at the
sides of a shield by curved lines drawn from the corner of the
chief to near the base.
Flory—In heraldry, applied to a field or charge powdered with fleurs-de-lis. See also under Cross.
Foil (trefoil, quatrefoil, cinquefoil, multifoil, etc.)—A leaf-shaped space
defined by the curves formed by the cusping in an opening or
Foliated (of a capital, corbel, etc.)—Carved with leaf ornament.
Four-centred Arch—See Arch.
Frater—The refectory or dining-hall of a monastery.
Fret—In modern heraldry, a charge formed of a voided lozenge interlaced with two narrow pieces in saltire. Fretty—applied to a field
or charge covered with three or more narrow bends and as many
bends sinister interlaced in a lattice pattern.
Frieze—The middle division in an entablature, between the architrave
and the cornice; generally any band of ornament or colour immediately below a cornice.
Funeral-armour—See under Achievements.
Fusil—In heraldry, an elongated lozenge.
Gable—The wall at the end of a ridged roof, generally triangular,
sometimes semicircular, and often with an outline of various
curves, then called curvilinear or Dutch. A stepped gable has an outline formed of a series of steps.
Gadrooned—Enriched with a series of convex ridges, the converse
of fluting, and forming an ornamental edge or band.
Garb—In heraldry, a sheaf, usually of wheat.
Garderobe—Wardrobe. Antiquarian usage applies it to a latrine or
Gargoyle—A carved projecting figure pierced or channelled to carry
off the rain-water from the roof of a building.
Gauging—In brickwork, bringing every brick exactly to a certain
form by cutting and rubbing. Specially made soft bricks are used
for the purpose.
Gemel-bar—In heraldry, a pair of narrow bars lying close to one
Gnomon—The rod of a sundial, showing the time by its shadow.
Gobony—In heraldry, applied to a border or charge made up of a
row of segments of alternating tinctures. Counter-gobony is used
for two such rows.
Gorget—The plate-armour protecting the neck.
Griffin—In heraldry, a winged monster with the fore parts of an eagle
and the hinder parts of a lion.
Grisaille—Painting, decorative or on glass, in greyish tints.
Groining, Groined Vault—See Vaulting.
Guiges—Suspension straps of a shield.
Guilloche-pattern—In Classical or Renaissance architecture, a
geometrical ornament consisting of two or more intertwining
wavy bands forming a series of circles.
Gules—In heraldry, red.
Guttae—Small stud-like projections under the triglyphs and mutules
of the Doric entablature.
Gutty—In heraldry, applied to a field or charge shown as though
sprinkled with drops of liquid.
Gyronny—In heraldry, applied to a field divided into eight triangular
segments by two lines drawn quarterly and two drawn saltirewise.
H and Half-H Types of House—See Houses.
Hall—The principal room of a mediaeval house, often open to the
roof. Also the Dining-room of a College.
Hall and Cellar Type of House—See Houses.
Hammer-beams—Horizontal brackets of a roof projecting at the wall-plate level, and resembling the two ends of a tie-beam with its
middle part cut away; they are supported by braces, and help to
diminish lateral pressure by reducing the span. Sometimes there
is a second and even a third upper series of these brackets.
Hatchment—Now used for the square or lozenge-shaped tablet displaying the armorial bearings, usually painted, of a deceased
person, first hung outside his house and then laid up in the church.
Hauberk—Shirt of mail.
Haurient—In heraldry, applied to a fish represented standing on its
Helm—Complete barrel or dome-shaped head-defence of plate. No
longer used in warfare after the middle of the 14th century; it
continued in use in the tilt-yard into the 16th century.
Helmet—A light head-piece. See Armet, Burgonet, Close-helmet,
Hexastyle—A portico having six columns.
Hipped Roof—A roof with sloped instead of vertical ends. Half-hipped, a roof whose ends are partly vertical and partly sloped.
Hood-mould (label, drip-stone)—A projecting moulding on the face
of a wall above an arch, doorway, or window; it may follow the
form of the arch or be square in outline.
Horse-barnacle—In heraldry, the nose pincers used by farriers to curb
Houses—These are classified as far as possible under the following
1. Hall and Cellar Type—Hall on first floor; rooms beneath generally
vaulted; examples as early as the 12th century.
2. H Type—Hall between projecting wings, one containing livingrooms, the other the offices; the usual form of a mediaeval
house, employed, with variations, down to the 17th century.
3. L Type—Hall and one wing, generally for small houses.
4. E Type—Hall with two wings and a middle porch; generally of
the 16th and 17th centuries.
5. Half-H Type—A variation of the E type without the middle
6. Courtyard Type—House built round a court, sometimes only
three ranges of buildings with or without an enclosing wall
and gateway on the fourth side.
7. Central-chimney Type—Rectangular plan, in small houses only.
Impaled—In heraldry, applied to the marshalling side by side on one
shield of the arms of a husband and wife, or of a dignity and its
Impost—The projection, often moulded, at the springing of an arch,
upon which the arch appears to rest.
Indent—The sinking in a slab for a monumental brass.
Indented—In heraldry, notched like the teeth of a saw.
Infulae—The tasselled labels or strings of a mitre.
Intaglio—A design cut into any substance leaving the pattern sunk
below the surface of the material.
Invected—In heraldry, edged with a series of convex curves.
Jambs—1. The sides of an archway, doorway, window, or other
2. In heraldry, legs of lions etc.
3. In armour, (greaves) plate-defences for the legs below the
Jessant-de-lis—In heraldry, applied to a leopard's face with a fleur-de-lis issuing from the mouth.
Jetty—The projection of the upper storey of a building beyond the
plane of a lower storey.
Joggling—The method of cutting the adjoining faces of the voussoirs
of an arch with rebated, zigzagged or wavy surfaces to provide a
Jupon—Close-fitting surcoat, worn over armour c. 1350 to c. 1410;
sometimes called a gipon.
Keystone—The middle stone in an arch.
King-post—The middle vertical post in a roof-truss. See under Roofs.
Kneeler—The stone at the foot of a gable.
L Type of House—See Houses.
Label—See Hood-mould. In heraldry, a narrow horizontal strip
(fillet) across the upper part of the shield from which hang broader
oblong tags (points or pendants); unless otherwise specified the
points are three in number. Later it was often cut short at each end
and the pendants were dovetail-shaped instead of rectangular.
Lancet—A long, narrow window with a pointed head, typical of the
Langued—In heraldry, applied to the tongue of a beast when of a
different tincture from the body.
Lenten Veil—A hanging suspended before the altar during Lent and
taken down on the Wednesday or Thursday before Easter.
Linen-fold Panelling—Panelling ornamented with a conventional
representation of folded linen.
Lintel—The horizontal beam or stone bridging an opening.
Lion—In heraldry, shown with the face in profile and (unless otherwise
blazoned) always rampant.
Locker—A small cupboard formed in a wall. See also Aumbry.
Loop—A small narrow light, often unglazed.
Louvre—A lantern-like structure surmounting the roof of a hall or
other building, with openings, for ventilation or the escape of
smoke, usually crossed by sloping slats (called louvre-boards) to
exclude rain. Louvre-boards are also used in church belfries, instead
of glazing, to allow the bells to be heard.
Lozenge—In heraldry, a charge like the diamond in a pack of cards.
Luce—In heraldry, a fish (pike).
Lynchets—Indications of cultivation-terraces on hillsides.
Mandorla—A glory in the form of an oval surround. Also Vesica
Maniple—A strip of embroidery, probably at one time a handkerchief
or napkin, held in the left hand, or worn hanging from the left
wrist by bishops, priests, and deacons.
Mannerist—A use of the repertory of revived antique forms in an
Mansard—See under Roofs.
Mantiger—In heraldry, a monster with the face of a man and the
body of a tiger.
Mantle or Mantling—In heraldry, a cloth hung over the hinder
part of the helm; the edges were often fantastically dagged and
Martlet—A bird, always shown in heraldry without feet.
Mask-stop—See under Stops.
Mass Vestments—These included the amice, alb, and girdle (which
were worn by all clerks), to which a sub-deacon added the tunicle
and maniple, a deacon the dalmatic, maniple, and stole (over one
shoulder only), and the priest the maniple, stole (over both
shoulders), and chasuble. Bishops and certain privileged abbots
wore the tunicle and dalmatic under the chasuble, with the mitre,
gloves, and ring, and buskins and sandals. Archbishops used the
pall in addition to all the foregoing. Bishops, abbots, and archbishops alike carried crosiers, and in the same way, but an archbishop had likewise a cross carried before him for dignity, and he
is generally represented holding one for distinction. The mass
vestments were sometimes worn over the choir-habit, and the
hood of the grey amess may often be seen on effigies hanging
beyond the amice apparel at the back of the neck.
Maunch—In heraldry, an old-fashioned sleeve with long hanging end.
Merlon—The solid part of an embattled parapet between the embrasures.
Metopes—The panels, often carved, filling the spaces between the
triglyphs of the Doric entablature.
Mill-rind (Fer-de-moline)—The iron affixed to the centre of a millstone. A common heraldic charge; in early heraldry, the name
given to the cross of this form, or cross moline.
Minim—An unofficial Roman coin of very small size.
Misericorde—1. A bracket, often elaborately carved, on the underside of the hinged seat of a choir-stall. When the
seat is turned up the bracket comes into position
to support the occupant during long periods of
2. In monastic planning, a small hall, generally attached
to the Infirmary, in which meat and better food
than the ordinary was supplied for special reasons.
Mitred Abbot's Vestments—Similar to a bishop's.
Modillions—Brackets under the cornice in Classical architecture.
Morse—Large clasp or brooch fastening the cope across the breast.
Motte—In earthworks, a steep mound, flat-topped, forming the main
feature of an 11th or 12th-century castle; originally often surmounted by a timber tower; associated with a Bailey (q.v.).
Mullet—In heraldry, a star-like charge with straight points. Unless
otherwise described it has five points.
Mullion—A vertical post, standard, or upright dividing an opening
Muntin—In panelling, an intermediate upright, butting into or stopping against the rails.
Mutules—Shallow blocks under the corona of the cornice in Classical
Naiant—In heraldry, applied to a fish represented swimming.
Nail-head—Architectural enrichment of small pyramidal form used
extensively in 12th-century work.
Nebuly—In heraldry, applied to an exaggeratedly wavy outline.
Necking or Neck-moulding—The narrow moulding round the
bottom of a capital.
Newel—The central post in a circular or winding staircase; also the
principal posts at the angles of a dog-legged or well-staircase.
Nodding Arch—See under Arch.
Octastyle—A portico having eight columns.
Ogee—A compound curve of two parts, one convex, the other concave; a double-ogee moulding is formed by two ogees meeting at
their convex ends.
Or—In heraldry, gold.
Orders of Arches—Receding concentric rings of voussoirs.
Orders of Architecture—In Classical or Renaissance architecture,
the five systems of columnar architecture, known as Tuscan,
Doric, Ionic, Corinthian, and Composite. Colossal Order, one in
which the columns or pilasters embrace more than one storey of
Oriel-window—A projecting bay-window carried upon corbels or
brackets. In Colleges and great houses a special usage is for the
large projecting windows generally lighting the Hall dais.
Orle—In heraldry, a term used to describe a voided scutcheon, or a
number of small charges arranged in this form.
Orphreys—Strips of embroidery on vestments.
Oversailing Course—A brick or stone course projecting beyond the
one below it.
Ovolo Moulding—A Classical moulding forming a quarter round
or semi-ellipse in section.
Pale—In heraldry, a vertical band down the middle of a shield. If
more than one, they are called Pallets. Per pale—applied to the
field or to a charge divided palewise with a difference of tincture
on either side.
Palimpsest—1. Of a brass; reused by engraving the back of an older
2. Of a wall-painting; superimposed on an earlier
Pall—1. In ecclesiastical vestments, a narrow strip of lambswool,
having an open loop in the middle, and weighted ends;
it is ornamented with a number of crosses and forms the
distinctive mark of an archbishop; it is worn round the
neck, above the other vestments.
2. A cloth covering a hearse.
Palladian Window—A three-light window with a tall round-headed
middle light and shorter lights on either side, the side lights with
flanking pilasters and small entablatures forming the imposts to
the arch over the centre light.
Paly—In heraldry, a shield divided by lines palewise, normally into
six divisions, unless otherwise blazoned.
Parlour—In a monastery, a passage-way, usually through the east
range of the cloister; the talking place. The principal private room
in 15th-century and later houses.
Passant—In heraldry, of beasts, etc., walking and looking forward
with head in profile. Passant gardant—with head turned to the
onlooker. Passant regardant—looking backwards.
Pastoral Staff—See Crosier.
Paten—A plate for holding the Bread at the celebration of the Holy
Patera-ae—A flat ornament applied to a frieze, moulding, or cornice;
in Gothic work it commonly takes the form of a four-lobed leaf
Pediment—A low-pitched gable used in Classical and Renaissance
architecture above a portico, at the end of a building, or above
doors, windows, niches, etc.; sometimes the gable angle is
omitted, forming a broken pediment, or the horizontal members
are omitted, forming an open pediment. A curved gable-form is
sometimes used in this way.
Pelican in Piety—A pelican shown, according to the mediaeval
legend, feeding her young upon the drops of blood she pecks from
Pheon—In heraldry, the barbed head of an arrow or dart.
Pilaster—A shallow pier of rectangular section attached to the wall.
Pile—In heraldry, a wedge-shaped charge issuing from the chief of a
shield and tapering to the base.
Piscina—A basin for washing the sacred vessels and provided with a
drain, generally set in or against the wall to the S. of the altar,
but sometimes sunk in the pavement.
Plat-band—A flat projecting horizontal band of masonry or brickwork across the face of a building, as distinct from a moulded
Plinth—The projecting base of a wall or column, generally chamfered
or moulded at the top.
Podium—In Classical architecture, a basis, usually solid, supporting a
temple or other superstructure.
Poleyn—Knee defence of leather or plate.
Poppy-head—The ornament at the heads of bench-standards or desks
in churches; generally carved with foliage and flowers, somewhat
resembling a fleur-de-lis.
Portcullis—A movable gate, rising and falling in vertical groves in
the jambs of a doorway.
Portico—A covered entrance to a building, colonnaded, either constituting the whole front of the building or forming an important
Pot—Colloquial term for an open helmet in the 17th century.
Powdered or Semy—In heraldry, strewn with an indefinite number
of small charges.
Presbytery—The part of a church in which is placed the high altar,
E. of the choir.
Pretence—In heraldry, a scutcheon 'of pretence' or 'in pretence' is a
scutcheon bearing the wife's arms placed by the husband of an
heiress upon the centre of his own shield.
Priest's Vestments (Mass)—Amice, alb, girdle, stole crossed in front,
Principals—The main as opposed to the common rafters of a roof.
Processional Vestments—The same as canonical (q.v.).
Proper—In heraldry, of the natural colour.
Pulpitum—A screen in a monastic church, dividing the monastic choir
from the nave.
Pulvinated Frieze—In Classical and Renaissance architecture, a frieze
having a convex or bulging section.
Purlin—In roof construction, a horizontal timber resting on the principal rafters of a truss, and forming an intermediate support for
the common rafters. For Collar-purlin, see King-post under Roofs.
Quarry—In glazing, small panes of glass, generally diamond-shaped
or square set diagonally.
Quartered or Quarterly—In heraldry, applied (1) to a field divided
chequerwise into four quarters, those diagonally opposite to each
other having the same tinctures; (2) to four or more coats of arms
marshalled chequerwise on one shield. When there are more than
four quarters the number is specified.
Quatrefoil—In heraldry, a four-petalled flower. See also Foil.
Queen-posts—A pair of vertical posts in a roof-truss equidistant from
the centre line of the roof. See also under Roofs.
Quoins—The dressed stones at the angle of a building, or distinctive
brickwork in this position.
Rafters—Inclined timbers supporting a roof-covering. See also under
Ragged, Raguly—In heraldry, applied to a charge whose edges are
ragged like a tree trunk with the limbs lopped away.
Rail—A horizontal member in the framing of a door, screen, or panel.
Rampant—In heraldry, of beasts etc., standing erect, as if attacking
Rear-arch—The arch on the inside of a wall spanning a doorway or
Rebate—A continuous rectangular notch cut on an edge.
Reels—Ornament resembling a line of bobbins, used in Classical
Reliquary—A small box or other receptacle for relics.
Rere-dorter—A monastic latrine.
Reredos—A screen of stone or wood at the back of an altar, usually
Responds—The half-columns or piers at the ends of an arcade or abutting a single arch.
Reveal—The internal side surface of a recess, especially of a doorway
or window opening.
Ridge (or Rig) and Furrow—Remains of old cultivations.
Ridge-roof—See King-post and Ridge under Roofs.
Riser—The vertical piece connecting two treads in a flight of stairs.
Rococo—The latest (18th-century) phase of Baroque, especially in
Northern Europe, in which effects of elegance and vivacity are
obtained by the use of a decorative repertory further removed
from antique architectural forms than the earlier phases and often
Roll-moulding or Bowtell—A continuous prominent convex
Rood (Rood-beam, Rood-screen, Rood-loft)—A cross or crucifix. The
Great Rood was set up at the E. end of the nave with accompanying
figures of St. Mary and St. John; it was generally carved in wood,
and fixed on the loft or head of the rood-screen, or on a special
beam (the Rood-beam) reaching from wall to wall. Sometimes the
rood was merely painted on the wall above the chancel-arch or
on a closed wood partition or tympanum in the upper half of the
arch. The Rood-screen is the open screen spanning the E. end of
the nave, shutting off the chancel; in the 15th century a narrow
gallery was often constructed above the cornice to carry the rood
and other images and candles, and it was also used as a musicgallery. The loft was approached by a staircase (and occasionally
by more than one), either of wood or built in the wall, wherever
most convenient, and, when the loft was carried right across an
aisled building, the intervening walls of the nave were often
pierced with narrow archways. Many of the roods were destroyed
at the Reformation, and their final removal, with the loft, was
ordered in 1561.
Roofs—Collar-beam—a principal-rafter roof with collar-beams
connecting the principals.
Cruck (or Crutch)—having a truss with principals springing from
below the level of the wall-plate. The timbers are usually curved
but examples with straight timbers are recorded.
Hammer-beam—hammer-beams instead of tie-beams, braced from
a level below the wall-plates, form the basis of construction.
King-post and Collar-purlin—a trussed-rafter roof with king-posts
standing on tie-beams to carry a centre purlin supporting collars.
King-post and Ridge—in which king-posts standing on tie-beams or
collar-beams directly support the ridge.
Mansard—characterised in exterior appearance by two pitches, the
lower steeper than the upper.
Principal-rafter—with rafters at intervals of greater scantling than the
common rafters and framed to form trusses; normally called by
the name of the connecting member used in the truss, tie-beam
or collar-beam. Later, as opposed to mediaeval, roofs of this kind
often have queen-posts.
Queen-post—with two vertical or nearly vertical posts (queen-posts)
standing on the tie-beam of a truss and supporting a collar-beam or the principal rafters.
Scissors-truss—as Trussed-rafter, but with crossed braces instead of
Tie-beam—a principal-rafter roof with a simple triangulation of a
horizontal beam linking the lower ends of the pairs of principals
to prevent their spread.
Trussed-rafter—in which each pair of common rafters, all the timbers
in the slopes being common rafters of uniform size, is connected
by a collar-beam, which is often braced. At intervals pairs
of rafters may be tenoned into a tie-beam.
Wagon—a trussed-rafter roof with curved braces forming a
semicircular arch springing from wall-plate level.
Roping—Ornament resembling a rope or cable.
Roundel—A circular unit of decorative or figure composition. In
heraldry, a round plate or disc of any tincture; a gold roundel is
called a Bezant.
Rubble—Walling of rough unsquared stones or flints. Coursed Rubble
—rubble walling with the stones or flints very roughly dressed
and levelled up in courses some 12 to 18 inches in height; in
Regular Coursed Rubble the stones or flints are laid in separate
courses and kept to a uniform height in each course.
Rustication—Primarily, masonry in which only the margins of the
stones are worked, also used for any masonry where the joints are
emphasised by mouldings, grooves, etc.; rusticated columns are
those in which the shafts are interrupted by square blocks of
stone or broad projecting bands. Rupilation—Masonry faced to
resemble a waterworn rock surface.
Sable—In heraldry, black.
Sacristy—A room generally in immediate connection with a church,
in which the holy vessels and other valuables are kept.
Salient—In heraldry, applied to a beast in a leaping position.
Sallet—A light helmet. The form varied but, in English representations, it is usually characterised by a short tail. Often fitted with a
vizor and worn in conjunction with a beaver.
Saltire—In heraldry, an X-shaped cross. Per saltire—applied to the
field or to a charge with alternating tinctures in the four parts
formed by two lines drawn saltirewise across it.
Samian Ware—A common table ware of the Roman period, mostly
of Gaulish origin, with a glossy surface, generally red in colour.
Also known as terra sigillata.
Scalloped Capital—A development of the cushion-capital in which
the single cushion is elaborated into a series of truncated cones.
Scarp—In earthworks, an artificial cutting away of the ground to form
a steeper slope.
Screen—In College chapels, the wooden partition separating the main
compartment from the Antechapel. In secular buildings, that
separating the main space of a hall from the service end. Screenspassage, the space at the service end of a hall between the screen
and the end wall; Screens is sometimes used to describe the whole
arrangement of screen and screens-passage. See also under Rood.
Scutcheon or Escutcheon—1. A shield; a charge in heraldry.
Voided Scutcheon, a scutcheon that
has had the middle part cut away
leaving only a border.
2. A metal plate pierced for the spindle
of a handle or for a keyhole.
Sedilia (sing. sedile, a seat)—The seats on the S. side of the chancel,
choir, or chapel near the altar, used by the ministers during the
Segreant—In heraldry, applied to a griffin when rampant.
Semy—In heraldry, applied to a field or charge powdered or strewn
with small charges.
Sexpartite Vault—See Vaulting.
Shaft—A slender column.
Shafted Jambs—Jambs containing one or more shafts either engaged
Sherd—A scrap or broken piece of pottery.
Sill—The lower horizontal member of a window or door-frame; the
stone, tile or wood base below a window or door-frame, usually
with a weathered surface projecting beyond the wall-face to throw
off water. In timber-framed walls, the lower horizontal member
into which the studs are tenoned.
Sinister—In heraldry, the left-hand side of a shield as held.
Slip-tiles—Tiles moulded with a design in intaglio which was then
filled in, before burning, with a clay of a different colour.
Soffit—The under-side of an arch, staircase, lintel, cornice, canopy,
Soffit-cusps—Cusps springing from the flat soffit of an arched head,
and not from its chamfered sides or edges.
Soil-mark—A trace of a levelled or buried feature revealed by differences in colour or texture of the soil, usually in ploughed land.
Spandrel—The space between the outside curve of an arch and the
surrounding rectangular framework or moulding, or the space
between the outside curves of two adjoining arches and a moulding
Spire, Broach-spire, Needle-spire—The tall pointed termination
covered with lead or shingles forming the roof of a tower or
turret. A Broach-spire rises from the sides of a tower generally
without parapets, the angles of the tower being surmounted by
half-pyramids (broaches) against the facets of the spire to effect the
change from the square to the polygon. A Needle-spire is small
and narrow, and rises from the middle of the tower-roof well
within the parapet.
Splay—A sloping face making an angle of more than a right angle with
another face, as in internal window-jambs etc.
Springing-line—The level at which an arch springs from its supports.
Spurs—Prick—in the form of a plain goad, an early type.
Rowel—with spiked wheel, came into general use about 1325.
Squinch—An arch thrown across the angle between two walls to
support a superstructure, such as the base of a stone spire.
Squint—A piercing through a wall to allow a view of an altar from
places whence it could otherwise not be seen.
Stages—The divisions (e.g. of a tower) marked by horizontal stringcourses externally.
Staircases—A close-string staircase is one having a raking member into
which the treads and risers are housed. An open-string staircase has
the raking member cut to the shape of the treads and risers. A dog-legged staircase has adjoining flights running in opposite directions
with a common newel. A well-staircase has stairs rising round a
central opening more or less as wide as it is long.
Stanchion—The upright iron bars in a screen, window, etc.
Stole—A long, narrow strip of embroidery with fringed ends worn
above the alb by a deacon over the left shoulder, and by priests
and bishops over both shoulders.
Stops—Blocks terminating mouldings or chamfers in stone or wood;
stones at the ends of labels, string-courses, etc., against which the
mouldings finish, frequently carved to represent shields, foliage,
human or grotesque masks; also, plain or decorative, used at the
ends of a moulding or a chamfer to form the transition thence to
Stoup—A receptacle, normally by the doorway of a church, to contain holy water; those remaining are usually in the form of a
deeply-dished stone set in a niche, or on a pillar.
String or String-course—A projecting horizontal band in a wall,
Strut—A timber forming a sloping support to a beam etc.
Studs—The common posts or uprights in timber-framed walls.
Style—The vertical members of a frame into which are tenoned the
ends of the rails or horizontal pieces.
Stylobate—The podium or architectural base of a temple or other
Sub-deacon's Vestments (Mass)—Amice, alb, tunicle, maniple.
Surcoat—Coat, usually sleeveless, worn over armour.
Surplice—A white linen vestment with wide hanging sleeves.
Swag—An ornament; a festoon suspended from both ends and carved
to represent cloth or flowers and fruit.
Tabard—Short loose surcoat, open at the sides, with short tab-like
sleeves, sometimes worn with armour, and painted or embroidered
with arms; distinctive garment of a herald.
Talbot—In heraldry, a hound with drooping ears.
Tas-de-charge—The lower courses of a vault or arch, laid in horizontal courses and bonded into the wall, forming a solid mass; as
they project forward they lessen the span.
Terminal Figure—The upper part of a carved human figure growing
out of a column, post, or pilaster diminishing to the base.
Tessera-ae—A small cube of stone, glass, or marble, used in mosaic.
Tetrastyle—A portico having four columns.
Thumb-gauging—An ornamental top-edge to a ridge-tile, made with
the thumb before the tile is baked.
Tie-beam—The horizontal transverse beam in a roof, tying together
the feet of pairs of rafters to counteract thrust.
Tierced in Pale—In heraldry, a division of the shield into three
vertical pieces. Tierced per pale and cheveron, division of the shield
into three pieces, the two uppermost per pale and the lowest per
Timber-framed Building—A building of which the walls are built of
open timbers and the interstices filled in with brickwork or lath
and plaster ('wattle and daub'), the whole often covered with
plaster or boarding.
Tincture—In heraldry, the generic name for the colours, metals and
furs used on coats-of-arms.
Tooling—Dressing or finishing a masonry surface with an axe or
other tool, usually in parallel lines. (A change from diagonal
tooling to vertical has been noted at Wells Cathedral c. 1210
(Arch. Jour. LXXXV).)
Torse—In heraldry, the wreathed ring upon which the crest is placed;
often shown as a short stiff rod of two tinctures twisted together.
Torus—In Classical architecture, a convex moulding, generally a
semicircle in section.
Touch—A soft black marble, quarried near Tournai and used in
Trabeation—The use of horizontal beams in building construction;
descriptive in the Inventory of conspicuous cased ceiling-beams.
Tracery—The ornamental work in the head of a window, screen,
panel, etc., formed by the curving and interlacing of bars of stone
or wood, grouped together, generally over two or more lights or
Transom—An intermediate horizontal bar of stone or wood across a
Tread—The horizontal platform of a step or stair.
Trefoil—In heraldry, a three-lobed leaf with a pendent stalk.
Trellis, Treillage—Lattice-work of light wood or metal bars.
Tressure—In heraldry, a narrow band formed by a voided scutcheon.
A double tressure, two such charges one within the other. Tressure
flory, with fleurs-de-lis issuing from the outer band. Tressure flory
and counter flory, with fleurs-de-lis issuing from the outer and inner
Triforium—In the larger churches, an arcaded wall-passage at about
mid wall height, between the aisle arcades and the clearstorey.
A large gallery the full width of the aisle below is termed a Tribune.
Triglyphs—Blocks with vertical channels, placed at intervals along
the frieze of the Doric entablature.
Truss—A number of timbers framed together to bridge a space, to be
self-supporting, and to carry other timbers. The trusses of a roof
are generally named after a peculiar feature in their construction,
such as King-post, Queen-post, Hammer-beam, Crutch; see under
Tufa (Calcareous)—Spongy deposit formed by the action of water on
limestone and resembling volcanic lava. Often used in vaulting on
account of its lightness.
Tusking—Bricks or stones in alternate courses left projecting beyond
the wall-face of a building to facilitate the bonding in of an extension. Also Toothing.
Tympanum—The triangular or semicircular field in the face of a
pediment or in the head of an arch.
Vair—In heraldry, a pattern imitating grey squirrels' skins, usually
shown as an alternating series, often in rows, of blue and white
bell-shaped patches. If of other tinctures it is called vairy.
Vaulting—An arched ceiling or roof of stone or brick, sometimes
imitated in wood and plaster. Barrel-vaulting is a continuous vault
unbroken in its length by cross-vaults. A groined vault (or cross-vaulting) results from the intersection of simple vaulting surfaces.
A ribbed vault is a framework of arched ribs carrying the cells that
cover in the spaces between them. One bay of vaulting, divided
into four quarters or compartments, is termed quadripartite; but
often the bay is divided longitudinally into two subsidiary bays,
each equalling a bay of the wall-supports; the vaulting bay is thus
divided into six compartments, and is termed sexpartite. Increased
elaboration is given by tiercerons, secondary ribs springing from
the wall-supports and rising to a point other than the centre, and
liernes, tertiary ribs that do not spring from the wall-supports, but
cross from main rib to main rib. In fan-vaulting numerous ribs rise
from the springing in equal curves, diverging equally in all
directions, giving fan-like effects when seen from below.
Venetian Window—See Palladian.
Vert—In heraldry, green.
Vesica Piscis—A pointed oval frame generally used in mediaeval art
to enclose a figure of Christ enthroned. Also Mandorla (q.v.).
Vestments (Ecclesiastical)—See alb, amess, amice, apparels, archbishop's vestments, bishop's vestments, canonical choir-habit,
cassock, chasuble, choir-habit, cope, crosier, cross-staff, dalmatic,
deacon's vestments, maniple, mitred abbot's vestments, morse,
orphreys, priest's vestments, processional vestments, stole, subdeacon's vestments, surplice.
Vexillum—A scarf on a pastoral staff.
Vice—A small circular stair.
Vizor—A defence for the eyes, sometimes for the whole face. The
close-helmet of the 16th century was fitted with a vizor consisting
of three separate plates: the vizor proper, the ventail or upper
beaver covering the face, and the chin-piece or lower beaver.
Voided—In heraldry, a voided charge has the middle part cut away,
leaving a margin.
Volute—An ornament in the form of a spiral scroll, e.g. in the Ionic
Voussoirs—The stones forming an arch.
Wagon-roof—See under Roofs.
Wall-plate—A timber laid lengthwise on the wall to receive the ends
of the rafters and other joists. In timber-framing, the studs are
tenoned into it.
Wave-moulding—A compound moulding formed by a convex curve
between two concave curves.
Weather-boarding—Horizontal boards nailed to the uprights of
timber-framed buildings and made to overlap; the boards are
generally wedge-shaped in section, the upper edge being the
Weathering (to sills, tops of buttresses, etc.)—A sloping surface for
casting off water.
Weepers—Small upright figures, generally of relatives of the deceased,
placed in niches or panels round the sides of mediaeval tombs;
occasionally also represented on brasses.
Wimple—Scarf covering chin and throat.
Woodman or Woodhouse—A wild man of the woods, generally
represented naked and hairy.
Wyvern—In heraldry, a two-legged dragon.
Yale—In heraldry, a composite animal resembling a spotted deer,
with swivelling horns.