Key Terms

Arcade: A building or exterior construction supported by a series of arches perched upon columns. Arch: A curved support structure that holds up weight, balanced on two sides. Bracket: Anything projecting out of the surface of a building’s exterior to provide structural or visual support. Column: A main pillar supporting weight, composed of a base, shaft, and capital at the top that holds the ceiling up. Dome: A half-sphere shape that usually stands at the tallest point of a building, providing stability without much material. Eave: A roof overhang that provides protection from rain and snow. Façade: The exterior of a building. Fortifications: Protection of a building or city, usually referring to thick walls, but also to defenses like moats or gun slots. Foundation: A large mass, usually of cement, meant to keep a structure in place and level. Free-standing: A building that has no foundation as an anchor. Grille: A panel for ventilation, often decorated. Hut: A one-room building, typically made of simple materials, and not requiring professional design or assembly. Lattice: A decorative panel, usually made of wood, over an exterior surface. Masonry: Stonework. Molding: Decorative strips of wood, stone, or clay. Mortar: Agent used to hold bricks or stone together. Order: Term used for classical styles of architecture. Pagoda: A tower with multiple overhanging roof layers; most common in East Asia. Panel: A smooth surface, often rectangular and framed by moldings. Plaza: Spanish term for a large open space, typical throughout Spanish Empire. Rafters: Sloping frame support for a roof, to which the roof itself is attached. Skyscraper: Any building that has over 40 stories and/or rises 500 or more feet (152 meters) above the ground.

Spire: A tall, slender fixture on the very top of a building. Thatch: Roofing or flooring made from straw or dried grass. Tower: Any particularly thin and tall building.



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