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MEEF - Middle East Engineering - Glossaries - Architecture
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Campanile - Bell tower, often set some distance away from its church.

Canopy - A projection or hood over a door, window, niche, etc.

Cantilever - A projecting elements, such as a beam or porch, supported at a single point or along a single line by a wall or column, stabilized by s counterbalancing downward force around the point of fulcrum.

Capital - The elaboration at the top of a column, pillar, pier or pilaster.

Carport - A roofed area attached to the house designed to protect the car.

Caryatid - The human figure used as a sculptural column as part of a classical composition, often flanking a doorway, or as a decorative detail within an interior around a fireplace.

Casement Window - A window that opens by swinging inward or outward much like a door. Casement windows are usually vertical in shape but are often grouped in bands.

Casing - The trim bordering the inside or outside of a window or door, commonly referred to as "inside" or "outside" casing.

Castellated - Decorated with battlements (a parapet with alternating indentations and raised portions); also called crenellation. Building with battlements are usually brick or stone.

Caulking - A putty-like substance used to seal joints against the weather.

Cedar Shingle - A roofing material made of durable pinewood..

Cement Blocks - Mass produced building blocks made from pouring concrete into a mold..

Cement Plaster - A mixture of sand and cement that is applied to the exterior foundation wall beneath ground level to aid in watering proofing.

Ceramic Tile - Any of a wide range of sturdy floor and wall tiles made from fired clay and set with grout. May be glazed or unglazed. Colors and finishes vary. May be used in doors or out.

Cesspool - A cesspool is a welled, underground cavity designed to receive the discharge from waste and soil pipes. Here, liquids are passed off while solida remain to undergo bacterial decomposition.

Chair-rail molding - A wooden molding placed along the loweer part of the wall to prevent chairs, when pused back, from damaging the wall. Also used as decoration.

Chancel - The easternmost part of a church, in which the alter is housed.

Chatri - A domed pavilion supported by columns at each corner, which is a characteristic element of Mogul architecture in India.

Chevet - The eastern end of a Gothic church, including choir (quire), ambulatory, and radiating chapels.

Chevron - A decorative V-shaped line.; Zig-zag moulding (twelfth century).

Chimney - A passage or structure extending above the roof, through which smoke escapes.

Chiseled - A stone shaped by a sharp-edged hand tool.

Chamfer - A beveled edge.

Choir (also quire) - The space reserved for the clergy in the church, usually east of the transept but, in some instances, extending into the nave.

Cinquecento - Sixteenth century.

Circulation - Architecture is not experienced statically. Circulation routes, the means by which access is provided through and around a building, are very often key elements in creating an understanding of architecture as users move from one part of a building to another through a carefully considered sequence of spaces. That part of a room or building required for movement of people from place to place.

Cladding - The lightweight outer skin of a building that does not carry any weight or support the building, but does keep wind and rain out. A term used to describe the siding or materials covering the exterior of a building.

Clapboard - Tapered horizontal boards used as siding, thickest on their bottom edge; each overlaps the one below. Also know as weatherboard or siding.

Classical - Refers to the architecture and design ideas of ancient Rome and Greece.

Classicism - The architectural vocabulary that has shaped Western architecture ever since ancient Greece. Characterized by a set of compositional rules and architectural elements, in particular, columns and orders. It is a language that has continually reinvented itself, providing scope for successive generations to explore the fundamentals of design.

Clean-Out - An opening in the fireplace foundation for disposal of ashes from the ash dump, or a fitting attached to waste and soil pipes to allow the system to be cleaned out.

Clerestory - The fenestrated part of a building that rises above the roofs of the other parts.; Upper elements of a Romanesque or Gothic church, bringing light into the center of the building from side windows pierced through stone.

Clerestory window - A window (usually narrow) placed in the upper walls of a room, usually at an angle, to provide extra light.

Cloister - A court, usually with covered walks or ambulatorie along its sides.

Cob - Unburnt clay mixed with straw.

Collar Beam - Horizontal members spanning roof rafters to supplement roof strength and/or form ceiling joist in half-story construction.

Colonnade - A row of columns forming an element of an architectural composition, carrying either a flat-topped entablature or a row of arches.

Column - A slender, upright structure, usually a supporting member in a building. Freestanding or self-supporting structural element carrying forces mainly in compression; either stone, steel, or brick, or more recently, concrete.

Common Brick - A brick used where strength in construction is required rather than a pleasing appearance.

Competition - A means for selecting an architect for a significant commission: Architects are invited to take part in a competition, which can be either open to all comers or by invitation only. Open competition is reguarded as an important way of discovering innovative new talent.

Compound pier - A pier composed of a group or cluster of members, especially characteristic of Gothic architecture.

Concrete - A mixture of sand, cement and aggregate (stone or gravel) that may be reinforced with ferrous metals.

Concrete Blocks - Masonry blocks commonly used for foundation and backing walls.

Conical - A furnace cap, resembling or shaped like a cone.

Conservation - Thye 20th century has seen the constructin of more new architecture than the total produced by all preceding centuries put together. But it has also seen the principle of preserving not just the most significant individual buildungs, but substantial groups of buildings, come to be universally established. Conservation, the art of the careful restoration and recyling of run-down and redundant buildings, has become an increasingly sophisticated practice.

Constructivism - An avant-grade movement of the early 20th century that orginated in revolutionary Russia with work by the sculptor Naum Gabo. It had a vision of a new sense of space, an imaginative understanding of geometry, and an enthusiasm for modern materials. Architectural adherents included the brothers Alexander and Vladimir Vesnin, and Vladimir Tatlin, whose revolutionary but unbuilt tower commemorating the Communist International remains an icon of the period.

Conservation - The 20th Century has seen the construction of more new architecture than the total produced by all proceeding centuries put together. But it has also seen the principle of preservation not just the most significant individual buildings, come to be universally established. Conservation, the art of the careful restoration and recycling of run-down and redundant buildings, has become an increasingly sophisticated practice

Contractor - The responsibility for actually building an architect's design rests with the contractor, who commits to a particular price for the work, usually in competition, employs the workforce, and contracts out such specialist work as may be necessary.

Coping - A flat cover of stone or brick that protects the top of a wall.

Corbel - A projecting wall member used as a support for some elements of the superstructure. Also, courses of stone or brick in which each course projects beyond the one beneath it. Two such structures, meeting at the topmost course, creates an arch.

Corbeling - Stone or wood projecting from a wall or chimney for support or decoration.

Cornice - Decorative projection along top of wall.

Corinthian column - In classical architecture, a column decorated at the top with a mixed bag of curlicues, scrolls and other lavish ormanentation.

Corner Post - Three 2x4's nailed together and erected at all exterior corners of a house providing adequate nailing space for plaster lath.

Corinthian - The type of Greek column characterized by simulated acanthus leaves.

Cornice - The uppermost section of moldings along the top of a wall; any molded projection of similar form.

Cornice Return - A short continuation of the face board at the gable end of a house.

Course - A continuous row of building materials, such as shingle brick or stone.

Crawl Space - The open space beneath the first floor in a basement less house.

Cresting - The top line or surface of a structure.

Crown molding - A molding where the wall and ceiling meet; uppermost molding along furniture or cabinetry.

Cupola - A small, dome-like structure, on top of a building to provide ventilation and decoration.

Cut stone - Large stones cut individually, used for a foundation or wall of a house.


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