GLOSSARY of The Meaning Attached to the Technical Terms Used in the Inventory.
Abacus.—The uppermost member of a capital.
Alb.—Long linen robe, with close sleeves; worn by clerks
of all grades.
Alettes or Allettes.—In armour, plates usually rectangular, of metal or leather covered with cloth or
other light material, fastened by a lace to the back or
sides of the shoulders; they commonly display
armorial bearings; worn c. 1275 to c. 1325.
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, 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.
Ankar-hold.—The dwelling house of an ankorite or
Apparels.—Rectangular pieces of embroidery on alb,
Apse.—The semi-circular or polygonal end of a chancel
or other part of a church.
Arabesque.—A peculiar kind of strap-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.
Arch.—The following are some of the most usual forms:—
Segmental:—A single arc struck from a centre below
the springing line.
Pointed or two-centred:—Two arcs struck from centres
on the springing line, and meeting at the apex with
Segmental-pointed:—A pointed arch, struck from two
centres below the springing line.
Equilateral:—A pointed arch struck with radii equal to
Lancet:—A pointed arch struck with radii greater than
Three-centred, elliptical:—Formed with three arcs, the
middle or uppermost struck from a centre below the
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
Ogee:—A pointed arch of four or more arcs, the two
uppermost or middle arcs being reversed, i.e., convex
instead of concave to the base line.
Relieving:—An arch generally of rough construction,
placed in the wall above the true arch or head of an
opening, to relieve it of some of the superincumbent
Stilted:—An arch with its springing line raised above
the level of the imposts.
Skew:—An arch not at right angles laterally with its
Archbishops' Vestments.—Buskins, sandals, amice, alb,
girdle, stole, fanon, tunic, dalmatic, chasuble, pall;
gloves, ring, mitre; an archbishop carries a crosier
but, in later times, holds a cross-staff for distinction.
Architrave.—A moulded enrichment to the jambs and
head of a doorway or window opening; the lowest
member of an entablature (q.v.).
Argent.—In heraldry, white or silver, the latter being
the word used in mediaeval English blazonry.
Arming Doublet.—Sleeved coat worn under armour; 15th
Arming Points.—Laces for attaching parts of armour
Arris.—An edge or angle.
Articulation.—The joining of several plates of armour
to form a flexible defence.
Ashlar.—Masonry wrought to an even face and square
Azure.—In heraldry, blue.
Baberies.—The "childlike conceits" and other carvings
on the underside of misericords.
Badge of Ulster.—A silver scocheon charged with a red
hand upraised, borne in the arms of baronets of
England, Ireland, and the United Kingdom.
Bailey.—A court attached to a mount or other fortified
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.
Banded Mail.—Mail shown with narrow bands, between
rows of rings; construction uncertain.
Barbe.—Pleated linen covering for chin and throat, worn
by widows and women under vows.
Barbican.—An advanced protective work before the gate
of a town or castle, or at the head of a bridge.
Barbican Mount.—A mound advanced from the main
defences to protect an entrance.
Barge-board.—A board, often carved, fixed to the edge
of a gabled roof, a short distance from the face of the
Barnack stone.—A shelly oolitic limestone; from Barnack,
Barrow.—A burial mound.
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 is used.
Bascinet.—Steel head-piece worn with camail, sometimes
fitted with vizor.
Battled.—In heraldry, the edge of a chief, bend, bar, or
the like drawn in the fashion of the battlements of
Bead.—A small round moulding.
Bell-capital.—A form of capital of which the chief characteristic is a reversed bell between the neck moulding
and upper moulding; the bell is often enriched with
Bend.—In heraldry, a band aslant and across the shield,
commonly from the dexter chief. A narrow bend
over other charges is called a Baston. The baston
with the ends cut off, drawn in the other direction
across the shield is a mark of bastardy in postmediaeval heraldry. A field or charge divided bendwise into an equal number of parts, normally six, is
said to be bendy.
Bendwise.—In the direction of a bend.
Bendy.—In heraldry, divided bendwise into an equal
number of divisions, normally six.
Berm.—A platform on the slope of a rampart.
Besagues.—Small plates worn in front of the arm-pits.
Bevor.—Plate defence for chin and throat.
Bezant.—In heraldry, a gold roundel or disc.
Billet.—In heraldry, a small oblong figure; also an architectural ornament chiefly used in the 11th and 12th
Billety.—In heraldry, a field or charge powdered with
Bishops' Vestments.—Same as an archbishop's, but without pall, and a bishop carries a crosier, and not a
Bolection-moulding.—A moulding raised above the general
plane of the framework of the door or panelling in
which it is set.
Border.—In heraldry, an edging round a coat of arms,
whether simple or quartered.
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 heraldic charge.
Bowtell.—A continuous convex moulding; another term
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 resist the pressure of the wind.
Brassart.—Plate armour defence for the arm.
Bressumer.—A beam forming the direct support of an
upper wall or timber-framing.
Brick-nogging.—The brick-work filling the spaces between
the uprights of a timber-framed building.
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 the wall.
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 a wall.
Brigandine.—Coat of padded cloth and very small plates
Broach-stop.—A half-pyramidal stop against a chamfer
to bring out the edge of a stone or beam to a right
Buff Coat.—Coat of heavy leather.
Buskins.—Stockings reaching to the knee; worn by
archbishops, bishops, and mitred abbots.
Butterfly Head-dress.—Large, of lawn and gauze on
wire, late 15th-century.
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.
Diagonal-buttress:—One placed against the right angle
formed by two walls, and more or less equi-angular
Flying-buttress:—A butting arch transmitting thrust
from a wall to an outer buttress.
Cable-moulding.—A moulding carved in the form of a
Camail.—Hood of mail; first worn attached to hauberk,
then separate from it with tippet of mail over shoulders, and, in the 14th century, attached to bascinet.
Cambered (applied to a beam).—Curved so that the
middle is higher than the ends.
Canonical Quire Habit.—Surplice, amess, cope.
Canopy.—A projection or hood over a door, window, etc.,
and the covering above a tomb or niche; also the
representation of the same on a brass.
Cantilever.—A beam supported at a point short of one
end, which end carries a load, the other end being
Canton.—A word applied in modern heraldry to the
Quarter which is commonly given less space than in
the older examples.
Caryatid.—Pillar carved as a woman.
Casement.—1. A wide hollow moulding in window
2. The hinged part of a window.
3. The sinking for a brass in a slab.
Cassock.—Long, close-sleeved gown; worn by all clerks.
Cellarer's Building or Cellar.—In monastic planning that
part of the Convent under the control of the cellarer
containing store-rooms, wine-vaults, etc. In Cistercian
monasteries it also included the Frater and Dorter
of the Lay brethren (conversi). Its ordinary position
in all orders was on the W. side of the cloister.
Central-chimney Type of House.—See "Houses."
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
below its arrises, or edges, a sunk chamfer.
Chantry-chapel.—A small chapel usually occupying part
of a large building, specially attached to a chantry.
Chasuble.—A nearly circular cape with central hole for
head, worn by priests and bishops at mass. It is put
on over all the other vestments.
Chausses.—Leg defences of mail.
Checky.—In heraldry, a field or charge divided into
squares or checkers.
Cheveron.—In heraldry, a charge resembling a pair of
rafters of a roof; sometimes used decoratively.
Chief.—In heraldry, the upper part of the shield. Cut
off from the rest of the field by a horizontal line
and having its own tincture, it becomes one of the
charges of the shield, covering a space which occupies
from a third to a half, or even more of it.
Chrismatory.—A box containing the holy oils for anointing.
Chrisom-child.—Child swaddled in a chrisom-cloth.
Cinquefoil.—1. See "Foil."
2. An 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 the case of a domestic building.
Clunch.—A local name for the lower chalk limestone,
composed of chalk and clay.
Cockatrice.—A monster with the head and legs of a
cock and the tail of a wyver.
Coif.—Small close hood, covering head only.
Collar-beam.—A horizontal beam framed to and serving
to tie a pair of rafters together some distance above
the wall-plate level.
Combed Work.—The decoration of plaster surfaces by
"combing" it into various patterns.
Console.—A bracket with a compound curved outline.
Cope.—A processional and quire vestment shaped like a
cloak, and fastened across the chest by a band or
brooch; worn by clerks of most grades.
Coped-slab.—A slab of which the upper face is ridged
down the middle, sometimes hipped at each end.
Cops, Knee and Elbow.—Knee and elbow defences of
leather or plate.
Corbel.—A projecting stone or piece of timber for the
support of a superincumbent weight.
Cotises.—In heraldry, pairs of narrow bands, in the form
of bends, pales, fesses, or cheverons, and borne accompanying one of those charges on each side of it.
Counter-coloured.—In heraldry, term applied in cases
where the field and charges exchange tinctures on
either side of a dividing line.
Counter-scarp.—The reverse slope of a ditch facing
towards the place defended.
Courtyard Type of House.—See "Houses."
Cove.—A concave under-surface.
Cover-paten.—A cover to a communion cup, sometimes
used as a paten.
Credence.—A shelf, niche, or table on which the vessels,
etc., for mass are placed.
Crest, cresting.—1. A device worn upon the helm. 2. An
ornamental finish along the top of a screen, etc.
Crockets.—Carvings projecting at regular intervals from
the vertical or sloping sides of parts of a building,
such as spires, canopies, hood-moulds, etc.
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; there are
many other varieties, of which the following are the
most common:—Crosslet,—with a smaller arm crossing each main arm; Crosslet fitchy,—having the lowest
arm spiked or pointed; Crosslet flowered or flory,—
having the arms headed with fleurs-de-lis; Crosslet
formy,—arms widening from the centre, and square
at the ends. The old forms of the crosslet have, as
a rule, the arms ending as in trefoils with rounded
petals; Plain crosses,—with four equal arms not extending to the edges of the shield; 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; Potent
(or Jerusalem),—having a small transverse arm at the
extreme end of each main arm; Tau (or Anthony),—
in the form of a T.
Cross-loop.—Narrow slits or openings in a wall, in the
form of a cross, generally with circular enlargements
at the ends.
Cross-staff.—Staff terminating in a cross; carried before
archbishops, who are usually shown holding it on
effigies, brasses, etc.
Crow-stopped.—A term applied to gables, the coping of
which rises in a series of steps.
Crusily.—In heraldry, covered or powdered with crosslets.
Cuirass.—Breast and back plates of metal or leather.
Cushion-capital.—A cubic capital with its lower angles
rounded off to a circular shaft.
Cusps (cusping, cusped heads, sub-cusps).—The projecting
points forming the foils in Gothic windows, arches,
panels, etc.; they were frequently ornamented at the
ends, or cusp-points, with leaves, flowers, berries, etc.
Dagging.—Cutting of edges of garments into slits and
Dalmatic.—The special vestment at mass of a deacon;
a loose tunic of moderate length, slit up sides, with
wide sleeves and fringed edges.
Dance.—In heraldry, a fesse or bar drawn zigzagwise, or
Deacons' Vestments (Mass).—Amice, alb, stole (worn over
left shoulder), dalmatic, and fanon.
Demi-brassart.—Plate defence for outside of arm.
Dexter.—In heraldry, the right-hand side of a shield as
Diaper.—Decoration of surfaces with squares, diamonds,
and other patterns.
Dimidiated.—In heraldry, applied to the halving of two
shields and joining a half of each to make a new
Dog-legged Staircase.—Two flights of stairs in opposite
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-window.—A vertical window on the slope of a
roof, and having a roof of its own.
Dorter.—In monastic buildings, the common sleeping
apartments or 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 dovetail joint.
Drawbar.—A wood bolt inside a doorway, sliding when
out of use into a long channel in the thickness of the
Dressings.—The stones used about an angle, window, or
other feature when worked to a finished face, whether
smooth, tooled in various ways, moulded, or sculptured.
Easter Sepulchre.—A locker in the north wall of a chancel
wherein the Host was placed from Good Friday
to Easter Day, to typify Christ's burial after His
crucifixion. A temporary wooden structure in imitation of a Sepulchre with lights, etc., was often placed
before it, but in some parts of the country this was
a more permanent and ornate structure of stone.
Eaves.—The under part of a sloping roof overhanging
Embrasures.—The openings, indents, or sinkings in an
Enceinte.—The main outline of a fort.
Engaged Shafts.—Shafts cut out of the solid or connected with the jamb, pier, respond, or other part
against which they stand.
Engrailed.—In heraldry, edged with a series of concave
Entablature.—In Classic or Renaissance architecture, the
horizontal superstructure above the columns or jambs
of an opening, consisting of an architrave, frieze,
Ermine or Ermines.—The fur most frequently used in
heraldry; white powdered with black tails. Other
varieties are sometimes found, as sable ermined with
silver, and in more modern heraldry, gold ermined
with sable, and sable ermined with gold.
E Type of House.—See "Houses."
Fanon.—A strip of embroidery probably at one time a
handkerchief, held in the left hand, or worn hanging
from the left wrists by bishops, priests and deacons.
It is often called a maniple.
Fascia.—A plain or moulded board covering the plate of
a projecting upper storey of timber, and masking the
ends of the cantilever joists which support it.
Feretory.—A place or chamber for a shrine.
Fesse.—In heraldry, a horizontal band athwart the shield.
When more than one fesse is borne they are known
Finial.—A formal bunch of foliage or similar ornament
at the top of a pinnacle, gable, canopy, etc.
Flanches.—In heraldry, the side portions of a shield,
bounded by convex lines issuing from the chief.
Foil (trefoil, quatrefoil, cinquefoil, multifoil, etc.).—A
leaf-shaped curve formed by the cusping or feathering
in an opening or panel.
Foliated (of a capital, corbel, etc.).—Carved with leaf
Four-centred Arch.—See "Arch."
Frater.—The refectory or dining-hall of a monastery.
Fret or Fretty.—In heraldry, a charge formed of a number
of bastons drawn from each side of the shield, and
interlaced like lattice-work. In modern heraldry, the
charge of a fret takes the form of a narrow saltire
interlacing a voided lozenge, while the word Fretty
is kept for the older form.
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 helm.—A trophy, in the form of a crested headpiece, carried at the funerals and placed over the
tombs of important personages.
Fusil.—In heraldry, a word applied to the pieces into
which a fesse is divided by engrailing or indenting.
Fylfot.—A peculiar cruciform figure, each arm of which
is bent to form a right angle.
Gable.—The wall at the end of a ridged roof, generally
triangular, sometimes semi-circular, and often with
an outline of various curves, then called curvilinear.
Gadlings.—Spikes or knobs on plate gauntlets.
Galleted or garretted Joints.—Wide joints in rubble or
masonry into which thin pieces of flint or stone have
Gambeson.—Garment of padded cloth worn under hauberk
or as sole defence.
Gardant.—In heraldry, an epithet of a beast whose full
face is seen.
Gargoyle.—A carved projecting figure pierced to carry off
the rain-water from the roof of a building.
Gimel-bar or Gemel-bar.—In heraldry, a pair of narrow
bars lying close to one another.
Gipon.—Close-fitting vest of cloth, worn over armour
c. 1350 to c. 1410.
Gobony.—In heraldry, checkers or panes of a metal
alternating with a colour, or either with a fur.
Gorget.—Plate defence for neck and throat.
Greek Cross.—A plain cross with four equal arms.
Griffon or Griffin.—A winged monster with the fore parts
of an eagle, and the hinder parts of a lion.
Groining, Groined Vault.—See "Vaulting."
Guige.—Strap from which shield was suspended.
Guilloche-pattern.—An ornament consisting of two or
more intertwining wavy bands.
Gules.—In heraldry, red.
Gussets.—Pieces of flexible armour placed in gaps of
Gyronny or Gironny.—In heraldry, the field of a shield
divided into six, eight or more gussets meeting at a
point in the middle.
Haketon.—Studded, stiffened or quilted body defence, of
cloth, leather and metal, with moderately long skirts.
Half-H type of House.—See "Houses."
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 (or struts), 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.—A heraldic display in a rectangular frame,
commonly set lozenge-wise.
Hauberk.—Shirt of chain or other mail.
Helm.—Complete barrel or dome-shaped head defence of
Helmet.—A light headpiece; various forms are: Armet,
Burgonet, close Helmet, all similar in principle.
Hipped roof.—A roof with sloped instead of vertical ends.
Half-hipped, a roof whose ends are partly vertical and
Hood-mould (label, drip-stone).—A projecting moulding on
the face of a wall above an arch, doorway, or window;
in some cases it follows the form of the arch, and in
others is square in outline.
Houses.—These are classified as far as possible under the
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 living rooms, 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
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 porch.
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), small
Indent.—The sinking or casement in a slab for a monumental brass.
Indented.—In heraldry, notched like the teeth of a saw.
Infirmary.—In monastic planning, a distinct block of
buildings, generally including a hall, misericord,
kitchen and chapel, and devoted to the use of the
infirm or aged.
Invected.—In modern heraldry, edged with a series of
Jambs.—1. The sides of an archway, doorway, window,
or other opening.
2. In heraldry, legs of lions, etc.
3. In armour, plate defences for lower leg.
Jazerine.—Armour of small plates on leather or cloth.
Keep.—The great tower or stronghold in a castle; of
greater height and strength than the other buildings.
Keystone.—The middle stone in an arch.
King-post.—The middle vertical post in a roof truss.
Kneeler.—Stone at the foot of a gable.
Label.—See "Hood-mould." In heraldry, a narrow
horizontal band (lying across the chief of a shield),
from which small strips, generally three or five, called
pieces, depend at right angles.
Lancet.—A long narrow window with a pointed head,
typical of the 13th century.
Latin Cross.—A plain cross with the bottom arm longer
than the other three.
Latten.—A term applied to the alloy of copper, zinc, &c.,
used in the manufacture of memorial brasses, &c.
Lenten Veil.—A cloth or veil hung across the chancel
or presbytery between the stalls and the altar, during
Leopard.—In heraldry, a lion showing its full face; always
passant (unless otherwise emblazoned), as in the three
leopards of England.
Linces, linchets or lynchets.—Terraces on a hill-side
formed by the gradual banking of ploughed earth
between the main furrows.
Linen-fold panelling.—Panelling ornamented with a
conventional representation of folded linen.
Lintel.—The horizontal beam or stone bridging an opening.
Lion.—In heraldry, face in profile and (unless otherwise
emblazoned) always rampant.
Liripipe.—Long tail of cloth attached to hooded tippet of
the 14th century; the whole finally developed into a
form of turban called Liripipe head-dress.
Locker (Aumbry).—A small cupboard formed in a wall.
Loop.—A small narrow light in a turret, etc.; often
Louvre or luffer.—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 slanting boards to exclude rain.
Low-side window.—A grated, unglazed, and shuttered
window with a low sill, i.e., within a few feet of the
floor, in the N. or S. wall of the chancel near its W.
end, probably the window at which the sacring bell
Lozenge.—In heraldry, a charge like the diamond in a
pack of cards.
L type of house.—See "Houses."
Luce.—In heraldry, a fish (pike).
Lychgate.—A covered gateway at the entrance of a
churchyard, beneath which the bier is rested at a
Mail Skirt.—Skirt of chain mail worn under taces and
Mail Standard.—Collar of chain mail.
Manche, Maunche.—A lady's sleeve with a long pendent
lappet; a heraldic charge.
Mantle or Mantling.—In heraldry, a cloth hung over the
hinder part of a helm; the edges were fantastically
dagged and slit.
Martlet.—A martin, shown sometimes in heraldry without
Mask-stop.—A stop at the end of a hood-mould, bearing
a distant resemblance to a human face; generally of
the 12th and 13th centuries.
Mass Vestments.—These included the amice, alb, and
girdle (which were worn by all clerks) to which a subdeacon added the tunicle and fanon, a deacon the
dalmatic, fanon and stole (over one shoulder only)
and the priest the fanon, 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 quire habit, and the hood of the grey
amess can often be seen on effigies hanging beyond
the amice apparel at the back of the neck.
Merlon.—The solid part of an embattled parapet between
Mezzanine.—A subordinate storey between two main
floors of a building.
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 mill-rind cross, or
Misericord.—1. An indulgence in the form of a folding seat
of a quire-stall, having a broad edge or bracket on
the underside, which can be used as a seat by the
occupant when standing during a long office.
2. In monastic planning, a small hall,
generally attached to the Infirmary, in which better
food than the ordinary was supplied for special
Mitred Abbots' Vestments.—Same as a bishop's.
Modillions.—Brackets under the cornice in Classic architecture.
Molet.—In heraldry, a star of five or six points, drawn
with straight lines. When the lines are wavy it is
called a Star. A molet with a round hole in the middle
is called a Rowel.
Morse.—Large clasp or brooch fastening cope across the
Mullion.—A vertical post, standard, or upright dividing
an opening into lights.
Muntin.—The intermediate uprights in the framing of
a door, screen, or panel, butting into or stopped by
Mutules.—In Classic and Renaissance architecture, small
flat brackets under the cornice of the Doric order.
Nasal.—Plate of a headpiece to protect nose.
Nebuly.—Heraldic term for a line or edge, following the
fashion of the mediaeval artists' conventional cloud.
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 doglegged or well-staircase.
Nogging.—The filling, generally of brick, between the
posts, etc. of a timber-framed house.
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; a word which, like argent, was
established in English blazon in the second half of the
Orders of Arches.—Receding or concentric rings of
Oriel Window.—A projecting bay-window carried upon
corbels or brackets.
Orle.—In heraldry, a term used to describe a voided
scocheon, or a number of small charges, as martlets
or the like.
Orphreys.—Strips of embroidery on vestments.
"Out of the Solid."—Mouldings worked on the styles,
rails, etc., of framing, instead of being fixed on to
Oversailing Courses.—A number of brick or stone courses,
each course projecting beyond the one below it.
Ovolo moulding.—A Classic moulding forming a quarter
round in section.
Pale.—In heraldry, a vertical band down the middle of
Palimpsest.—1. Of a brass: reused by engraving the
back of an older engraved plate.
2. Of a wall-painting: superimposed on an
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
2. A cloth covering a hearse.
Paly.—In heraldry, a shield divided by lines palewise,
normally into six divisions, unless otherwise emblazoned.
Panache.—A plume or bush of feathers worn on the
Pargeting.—Ornamental plaster work on the surface
of a wall.
Parted or Party.—In heraldry, a term used when a shield
is divided down the middle. When two coats
of arms are marshalled, each in one of these
divisions, the one is said to be party or parted with
the other, or, in the words of the later heraldry, to
be impaling it. The word party or parted is also
used for other specified divisions, as party bendwise.
Parvise.—Now generally used to denote a chamber above
Passant (of beasts, etc.).—In heraldry, walking and
looking forward—head in profile.
Pastoral Staff.—See "Crosier."
Paten.—A plate for holding the Bread at the celebration
of the Holy Communion.
Paty (cross).—See "Cross."
Pauldron.—Plate defence for the shoulders.
Pediment.—A low-pitched gable used in Classical and
Renaissance architecture above a portico, at the end
of a building, and above doors, windows, niches,
etc.; sometimes the middle part is omitted, forming
a "broken" pediment.
Perk.—A perch on which to hang vestments.
Pheon.—In heraldry, a broad arrow head.
Pilaster.—A shallow pier attached to a wall.
Pile.—In heraldry, a triangular or wedge-shaped charge,
issuing from the chief of the shield unless otherwise
Piscina.—A basin with a drain, set in or against the wall
to the S of an altar.
Plinth.—The projecting base of a wall or column, generally
chamfered or moulded at the top.
Popey.—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.—The running gate, rising and falling in vertical
grooves in the jambs of a doorway.
Pourpoint.—A body defence of cloth or of leather, padded
Powdered.—A shield or charge with small charges scattered
indiscriminately thereon is said to be powdered
Presbytery.—The part of a church in which is placed the
high altar, E. of the quire.
Priests' Vestments (Mass).—Amice, alb, girdle, stole
crossed in front, fanon, chasuble.
Principals.—The chief trusses of a roof, or the main
rafters, posts, or braces, in the wooden framework
of a building.
Processional Vestments.—Same as canonical.
Pulvinated Frieze.—In Classical and Renaissance architecture, a frieze having a convex or bulging section.
Purlin.—A horizontal timber resting on the principal
rafters of a roof-truss, and forming an intermediate
support for the common rafters.
Purple or Purpure.—One of the colours in heraldry.
Pyx.—Any small box, but usually a vessel to contain the
Quarry.—In glazing, small panes of glass, generally
diamond-shaped or square, set diagonally.
Quarter.—In heraldry, the dexter corner of the shield;
a charge made by enclosing that corner with a right-angled line taking in a quarter or somewhat less of
the shield and giving it a tincture of its own.
Quartered or Quarterly.—A term which, in its original
sense, belongs to a shield or charge divided crosswise
into four quarters. After the practice of marshalling
several coats in the quarters of a shield had been
established, the quarters themselves might be quartered for the admission of more coats, or the four
original divisions increased to six or more, each being
still termed a quarter.
Quatrefoil.—In heraldry, a four-petalled flower. See
Queen-posts.—A pair of vertical posts in a roof-truss
equi-distant from the middle line.
Quillon.—Bars forming cross-guard of sword.
Quilted Defence.—Armour made of padded cloth, leather,
Quire-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 over the surplice a
grey amess. In monastic churches, all classes, whether
canons regular, monks, friars, nuns, or novices, wore
the ordinary habit with a cope on festivals.
Quoin.—The dressed stones at the angle of a building.
Ragged, Raguly.—In heraldry, applied to a charge
whose edges are ragged like a tree trunk with the
limbs lopped away.
Rampant (of beasts, etc.).—In heraldry, standing erect
on one foot, as if attacking or defending.
Rampart.—A mound or bank surrounding a fortified
Rapier.—Cut and thrust sword.
Razed.—Of a head, etc. in heraldry, having a ragged
edge as though torn off.
Rear-arch.—The arch on the inside of a wall spanning
a doorway or window opening.
Rear-vault.—The space between a rear-arch and the
outer stonework of a window.
Rebate (rabbet, rabbit).—A continuous rectangular notch
cut on an edge.
Reliquary.—A small box or other receptacle for relics.
Rerebrace.—Plate or leather defence for upper arm.
Rere-dorter.—The common latrine of a monastic house.
Reredos.—A hanging, wall, or screen of stone or wood at
the back of an altar or daïs.
Respond.—The half-pillar or pier at the end of an arcade
or abutting a single arch.
Revetment.—A retaining wall of masonry against a bank
Roll-moulding or Bowtell.—A continuous convex moulding
cut upon the edges of stone and woodwork, etc.
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 in 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 music gallery. The
loft was approached by a staircase (and occasionally
by more than one), either of wood or in a turret built
in the wall wherever most convenient, and, when the
loft was carried right across the 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.
Roundel.—In heraldry, a round plate or disc of any
tincture other than gold.
Rubble.—Walling of rough unsquared stones or flints.
Rustic work, rusticated joints.—Masonry in which only
the margins of the stones are worked.
Sabatons or Sollerets.—Articulated plate defences for
Sable.—In heraldry, black.
Salade or Sallet.—Light steel headpiece, frequently with
Saltire.—In heraldry, an X-shaped cross; also called St.
Sanctus-Bell.—A small bell, usually hung in a bell-cot
over the E. gable of the nave, or in the steeple, and
rung at the Elevation of the Host during mass. The
name is also applied to small bells of post-Reformation date.
Scallop.—A shellfish, a common charge in heraldry.
Scalloped capital.—A development of the cushion capital
in which the single cushion is elaborated into a series
of truncated cones.
Scapple, to.—To dress roughly, of masonry or timber.
Scarp.—A vertical or sloping face of earth in a ditch
or moat, or cut in the slope of a hill, facing away
from the place which it helps to defend.
Scribe.—A term applied to timber cut or fitted to an
irregular surface or moulding.
Scroll-moulding.—A rounded moulding of two parts, the
upper projecting beyond the lower, thus resembling a
scroll of parchment.
Scutcheon or Scocheon.—1. A shield, a charge in heraldry,
Voided Scutcheon, a scutcheon whose border alone is
seen; termed in modern heraldry an Orle.
2. A metal plate pierced for the
spindle of a handle or for a keyhole.
Sedilia (sing. sedile, a seat), sometimes called presbyteries.—The seats on the S. side of the chancel,
quire, or chapel near the altar, used by the ministers
during the Mass.
Sexpartite vault.—See "Vaulting."
Shaft.—A small column.
Shafted jambs.—A jamb containing one or more shafts
either engaged or detached.
Shell-keep.—A ring wall cresting a castle mount and
sometimes enclosing buildings.
Shingles.—Tiles of cleft timber, used for covering spires,
Sinister.—In heraldry, the left hand side of a shield as
Slip-tiles.—Tiles moulded with a design in intaglio which
was then filled in, before burning, with a clay of a
Slype.—A mediaeval term for a narrow passage between
two buildings; generally used for that from the
cloister to the cemetery of a monastic establishment.
Soffit.—The under side of a staircase, lintel, cornice,
arch, canopy, etc.
Soffit-cusps.—Cusps springing from the flat soffit of an
arched head, and not from its chamfered sides or
Solar.—An upper chamber in a mediaeval house adjoining
the dais end of the Hall, and reserved for the private
use of the family.
Spandrel.—The triangular-shaped space above the haunch
of an arch; the two outer edges generally form a
rectangle, as in an arched and square-headed doorway; the name is also applied to a space within a
curved brace below a tie-beam, etc., and to any similar
Spire, Broach-spire, Needle-spire.—The tall pointed
termination covered with lead or shingles, the
roof of a tower or turret. A Broach-spire rises from
the sides of the tower without a parapet, the angles
of a square tower being surmounted, in this case,
by half-pyramids against the alternate faces of the
spire, when octagonal. 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 more than a rightangle with the main surface, as in window jambs, etc.
Springing-line.—The level at which an arch springs from
Sprocket-pieces.—Short lengths of timber covering the
ends of roof-rafters to flatten the angle of pitch of
the roof at the eaves.
Spurs.—Prick: in form of plain goad; early form.
Rowel: with spiked wheel; later form.
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
Stages of Tower.—The divisions marked by horizontal
Stanchion, stancheon.—The upright iron bars in a screen,
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
Stops.—Projecting stones at the ends of labels, stringcourses, etc. against which the mouldings finish;
they are often carved in various forms, such as
shields, bunches of foliage, human or grotesque
heads, etc.; a finish at the end of any moulding or
chamfer bringing the corner out to a square edge, or
sometimes, in the case of a moulding, to a chamfered
edge. A splayed stop has a plain sloping face, but in
many other cases the face is moulded.
Stoup.—A vessel, placed near an entrance doorway, to
contain holy water; those remaining are usually in the
form of a deeply-dished stone set in a niche, or on a
pillar. Also called Holy-water Stones, or Holy-water
String-course.—A projecting horizontal band in a wall;
Strut.—A timber forming a sloping support to a beam, etc.
Style.—The vertical members of a frame into which are
tenoned the ends of the rails or horizontal pieces.
Sub-deacons' Vestments (Mass).—Amice, alb, tunicle,
Surcoat.—Coat, usually sleeveless, worn over armour.
Tabard.—Short loose surcoat, open at sides, with short
tab-like sleeves, sometimes worn with armour, and
emblazoned with arms; distinctive garment of
Taces or tonlets.—Articulated defence for hips and lower
part of body.
Terminal figure.—The upper part of a carved human
figure growing out of a column, post, or pilaster,
diminishing to the base.
Tie-beam.—The horizontal transverse beam in a roof,
tying together the feet of the rafters to counteract
Timber-framed building.—A building of which the walls
are built of open timbers and covered with plaster or
boarding, or with interstices filled in with brickwork.
Totternhoe stone.—Clunch from Totternhoe, Bedfordshire.
Touch.—A soft black marble quarried near Tournai and
commonly used in monumental art.
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, and grouped together,
generally over two or more lights or bays.
Transom.—A horizontal bar of stone or wood across the
upper half of a window opening, doorway, or panel.
Trefoil.—In heraldry, a three-lobed leaf with a pendent
Tressure.—In heraldry, a narrow flowered or counter-flowered orle, often voided or doubled, as in the
arms of the King of Scots.
Trimmer.—A timber, framing an opening in a floor or
Tripping.—Applied, in heraldry, to stags, etc., walking
Truss.—A number of timbers framed together to bridge
a space or form a bracket, 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, Hammerbeam, etc. (q.v.).
Tuiles.—In armour, plates attached to and hanging from
the edge of taces, or tonlets.
Tunicle.—Similar to dalmatic.
Tympanum.—An enclosed space within an arch, doorway,
etc., or in the triangle of a pediment.
Types of Houses.—See "Houses."
Vair.—In heraldry, a fur 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.
Vambrace.—Plate defence for lower arm.
Vamplate.—Funnel-shaped hand-guard of lance.
Vaulting.—An arched ceiling or roof of stone or brick,
sometimes imitated in wood. Barrel-vaulting (sometimes called waggon-head-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 which
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. A more complicated form is lierne-vaulting; this contains secondary ribs, which 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
Veil.—A sweat-cloth attached to the head of the crosier.
(See also "Lenten Veil.")
Vernicle.—A representation of the face of Christ printed
on St. Veronica's handkerchief.
Vert.—In heraldry, green.
Vestments (ecclesiastical).—See alb, amess, amice, apparels,
archbishops' vestments bishops' vestments, buskins,
canonical quire habit, cassock, chasuble, cope,
crosier, cross staff, dalmatic, deacons' vestments,
fanon, mitred abbots' vestments, morse, orphreys,
priests' vestments, processional vestments, quire
habit, sub-deacons' vestments, stole, tunicle.
Vizor.—Hinged face-guard of bascinet, salade, close
Voided.—In heraldry, with the middle part cut away,
leaving a margin.
Volute.—A spiral form of ornament.
Voussoirs.—The stones forming an arch.
Vowess.—A woman, generally a widow, who had taken
a vow of chastity, but was not attached to any
Wall-plate.—A timber laid lengthwise on the wall to
receive the ends of the rafters and other joists.
Warming-house.—In monastic planning, an apartment
in which a fire was kept burning for warmth.
Wattle and daub.—An old form of filling in timberframed buildings.
Wave-mould.—A compound mould 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 wedge-shaped in section, the
upper edge being the thinner.
Weathering (to sills, tops of buttresses, etc.).—A sloping
surface for casting off water, etc.
Well-staircase.—A staircase of several flights and generally square, surrounding a space or "well."
Wimple.—Scarf covering chin and throat.
Wyver or Wyvern.—A dragon-like monster with a beaked
head, two legs with claws, and tail sometimes coiled in
a knot. The earlier examples show wings.