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Glossary of Architecture Terms
beginning with letter B
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back Tweet Definition of back Like Definition of back on Facebook
noun
  1. The side of something opposite the front or useful side; the reverse side; the side that is not normally seen.
Turn the book over and look at the cover.
  1. That which is farthest away from the front.
He sat in the of the room.
  1. The part of something that goes last.
The car was near the of the train.
  1. The rear of body, especially the part between the neck and the end of the spine and opposite the chest and belly.
Could you please scratch my ?
  1. In some team sports, a position behind most players on the team.
verb
  1. To go in the reverse direction.
The train backed into the station.
  1. To support.
I you all the way.
  1. (nautical, of the wind) the change direction contrary to its normal pattern (anticlockwise in the northern hemisphere, clockwise in the southern)
  2. (nautical, of a square sail) to brace the yards so that the wind presses on the front of the sail, to slow the ship
  3. (nautical, of an anchor) to lay out a second, smaller anchor to provide additional holding power
adjective
  1. Near the rear.
Go in the door of the house.
  1. (context, after a change) In the previous state or position.
He was on vacation, but now he"s .
The office fell into chaos when you left, but now order is .
  1. Not current.
I"d like to find a issue of that magazine.
  1. far, Far from the main area.
They took a road.
adverb (further back, furthest back)
  1. (Not comparable) To a previous condition or place.
He gave the money.
  1. Away from the front or from an edge.
Sit all the way in your chair.
Step from the curb.
  1. In a manner that impedes.
Fear held him .
baguette Tweet Definition of baguette Like Definition of baguette on Facebook
noun
  1. a narrow, relatively long rectangular shape
  2. a gem cut in such a shape
  3. a variety of bread that is long and narrow in shape
bahut Tweet Definition of bahut Like Definition of bahut on Facebook
noun
  1. (obsolete) A portable coffer or chest with a rounded lid covered in leather, garnished with nails, once used for the transport of clothes or other personal luggage. It was the original portmanteau.
  2. (obsolete, architecture) A w:dwarf-wall, dwarf-wall of plain masonry, carrying the roof of a cathedral or church and masked or hidden behind the baluster, balustrade.
balcony Tweet Definition of balcony Like Definition of balcony on Facebook
noun (pl=balconies)
  1. An accessible structure extending from a building, especially outside a window.
  2. An accessible structure overlooking a stage.
  3. (slang) - large or projected breasts on a woman
    • Synonyms - see WikiSaurus:breasts
balloon Tweet Definition of balloon Like Definition of balloon on Facebook
noun
  1. An inflatable buoyant object, often (but not necessarily) round and flexible.
  2. Such an object as a child"s toy.
  3. Such an object designed to transport people through the air.
  4. (medicine) A sac inserted into part of the body for therapeutic reasons; such as angioplasty.
  5. A speech bubble.
verb
  1. (transitive) To increase or expand rapidly.
His stomach ballooned from eating such a large meal.
Prices will if we don't act quickly.
baluster Tweet Definition of baluster Like Definition of baluster on Facebook
noun
  1. A short column used in a group to support a rail, as commonly found on the side of a stairway.
balustrade Tweet Definition of balustrade Like Definition of balustrade on Facebook
noun
  1. A row of balusters topped by a rail, serving as an open parapet, as along the edge of a balcony, terrace, bridge, staircase, or the eaves of a building.
banded Tweet Definition of banded Like Definition of banded on Facebook
noun
  1. (heraldry) Anything tied with a band.
verb
  1. Simple past and past participle of band.
banderole Tweet Definition of banderole Like Definition of banderole on Facebook
noun
  1. A little banner, flag, or streamer.
Quotations
  • 1786: Lances were ornamented with a near the point, which gave them a handsome appearance, these were also called pencells. " w:Francis Grose, Francis Grose, A Treatise on Ancient Armour and Weapons, page 47.
  • 1819: From the extremity of which fluttered a small or streamer bearing a cross. " w:Walter Scott, Sir Walter Scott, Ivanhoe.
  • baptistery Tweet Definition of baptistery Like Definition of baptistery on Facebook
    noun (baptisteries)
    1. (alternative spelling of, baptistry)
    baptistry Tweet Definition of baptistry Like Definition of baptistry on Facebook
    noun (baptistries)
    1. (Christianity) A designated space within a church, or a separate room or building associated with a church, where a baptismal font is located, and consequently, where the sacrament of Christian baptism (via aspersion or affusion) is performed.
    2. An indoor pool used for baptism by immersion.
    bar Tweet Definition of bar Like Definition of bar on Facebook
    noun
    1. A solid, more or less rigid object with a uniform cross-section smaller than its length.
    2. (metallurgy) a solid metal object with uniform (round, square, hexagonal, octagonal or rectangular) cross-section, whose smallest dimension is .25 inch or greater (US), a piece of thinner material being called a strip.
    Ancient Sparta used iron s instead of handy coins in more valuable alloi, to physically disencourage the use of money
    1. A cuboid piece of any solid commodity.
    bar of chocolate
    bar of soap
    1. A long, narrow drawn or printed rectangle, cuboid or cylinder, especially as used in a bar code or a bar chart.
    2. A business licensed to sell intoxicating beverages for consumption on the premises, or the premises themselves; public house.
    3. The counter of such a premises
    4. A similar device or simply a closet containing alcoholic beverages in a private house or a hotel room.
    5. An official order or pronouncement that prohibits some activity.
    6. (computing, whimsical, derived from fubar) Used to stand for some unspecified entity, usually a second entity following foo.
    Suppose we have two objects, foo and bar
    1. (legal: the Bar) Short for the Bar Exam, the legal licensing exam.
    He's studying hard to pass the Bar this time; he's failed it twice before.
    1. (British: the Bar) A collective term for barristers.
    2. (British: the Bar) (loosely) The profession of barristers.
    3. (music) A vertical line across a musical staff dividing written music into sections, typically of equal durational value.
    4. (music) One of these musical sections.
    5. (soccer) The crossbar
    6. An addition to a military medal, on account of a subsequent act
    7. A linear shoaling landform feature within a body of water.
    8. (nautical) A ridge or succession of ridges of sand or other substance, especially a formation extending across the mouth of a river or harbor or off a beach, and which may obstruct navigation. (FM 55-501).
    9. (heraldry) One of the ordinary, ordinaries in heraldry.
    See wikipedia article on the topic: (w, Ordinary (heraldry))
    verb (bars, barring, barred, barred)
    1. (transitive) To obstruct the passage of (someone or something).
    2. (transitive) To prohibit.
    I couldn't get into the nightclub because I had been barred
    1. (transitive) To lock or bolt with a bar.
    bar the door
    barrel roof Tweet Definition of barrel roof Like Definition of barrel roof on Facebook
    noun
    1. A roof having a semicircular cross section; used to span large distances in railway stations etc
    bartizan Tweet Definition of bartizan Like Definition of bartizan on Facebook
    noun
    1. A parapet with battlements projecting from the top of a tower in a castle or church.
    basement Tweet Definition of basement Like Definition of basement on Facebook
    noun
    1. A floor of a building below ground level.
    2. (sports idiom) Last place in a sports conference standings.
    basilica Tweet Definition of basilica Like Definition of basilica on Facebook
    noun
    1. (architecture) A Christian church building having a nave with a semicircular apse, side aisles, a narthex and a clerestory.
    2. A Roman Catholic church or cathedral with basilican status.
    bathroom Tweet Definition of bathroom Like Definition of bathroom on Facebook
    noun
    1. A room containing a bath where one can bathe.
    2. (italbrac, chiefly North American) A room containing a toilet.
    batter Tweet Definition of batter Like Definition of batter on Facebook
    noun
    1. A beaten mixture of flour and liquid (usually egg and milk), used for baking (e.g. pancakes, cake, or yorkshire pudding) or to coat food (e.g. fish) prior to frying
    To the dismay of his mother, the boy put his finger into the cake .
    1. The person who tries to hit the ball in a sport like baseball
    The first hit the ball into the corner for a double.
    1. (cricket) A batsman. Used under the modern fashion for expunging gender from all words, but in fact women cricketers refer to themselves as batsmen (ie. it's already gender-neutral, see the batsman article).
    2. A binge, a heavy drinking session.
    When he went on a , he became very violent.
    1. A slope.
    Hydroseeding of unvegetated batters is planned.
    verb
    1. to hit or strike violently and repeatedly
    2. to coat with batter
    beak Tweet Definition of beak Like Definition of beak on Facebook
    noun
    1. A rigid structure projecting from the front of a bird's face, used for pecking, grooming and for eating food.
    2. A similar structure forming the jaws of an octopus.
    3. (nautical) The metal point fixed on the bows of a war galley, used as a ram.
    4. (slang) A justice of-peace, or magistrate. Also a judge or chairman who presides in court.
    He's up before the beak again tomorrow.
    I clapp'd my peepers full of tears, and so the old beak set me free; I began to weep, and the judge set me free.
    1. (slang) The human nose, especially one that is large and pointed.
    bedchamber Tweet Definition of bedchamber Like Definition of bedchamber on Facebook
    noun (plural: bedchambers)
    1. (archaic): bedroom
    bedroom Tweet Definition of bedroom Like Definition of bedroom on Facebook
    noun
    1. a room in a house where a bed is kept for sleeping
    belfry Tweet Definition of belfry Like Definition of belfry on Facebook
    noun (belfr, ies)
    1. (obsolete) A moveable tower used in sieges.
    2. (context, dialectal) A shed.
    3. (obsolete) An alarm-tower; a watch-tower containing an alarm-bell.
    4. A tower or steeple specifically for containing bells, especially as part of a church.
    5. A part of a large tower or steeple, specifically for containing bells.
    Bell Tweet Definition of Bell Like Definition of Bell on Facebook
    proper noun
    1. A Scottish and northern English surname for a bell ringer, bell maker, or from someone who lived "at the Bell (inn)"
    2. The Bell telephone company (after w:Alexander Graham Bell, the inventor of the telephone.)
    bema Tweet Definition of bema Like Definition of bema on Facebook
    noun
    1. A platform from which speakers addressed an assembly.
    2. Raised area of worship in a synagogue upon which rests the Holy Ark containing Scrolls of Torah.
    bezant Tweet Definition of bezant Like Definition of bezant on Facebook
    noun
    1. (historic) A coin made of gold or silver, minted at w:Byzantium, Byzantium and used in currency throughout mediaeval Europe.
    billet Tweet Definition of billet Like Definition of billet on Facebook
    noun
    1. a place where a soldier is assigned to lodge
    2. metallurgy a semi-finished length of metal
    3. a short piece of wood, especially one used as firewood
    4. (heraldry) A rectangle used as a charge on an escutcheon
    verb (billets, billeting or billetting, billeted or billetted)
    1. (context, of a householder etc) to lodge soldiers, usually by order
    2. (context, of a soldier) to lodge, or be quartered, in a private house
    blind Tweet Definition of blind Like Definition of blind on Facebook
    noun
    1. A covering for a window to keep out light. The covering may be made of cloth or of narrow slats that can block light or allow it to pass.
    2. Any device intended to conceal or hide; as, a duck blind.
    3. (baseball) (slang) An 1800s baseball term meaning no score.
    4. (poker) A forced bet
    5. (poker) A player who is or was forced to make a bet
    verb
    1. (transitive) To make temporarily or permanently blind.
    The light was so bright that for a moment he was blinded.
    Don't wave that pencil in my face - do you want to blind me?
    adjective (blinder, blindest)
    1. (notcomparable) Of a person or animal, unable to see.
      • 1883: w:Robert Louis Stevenson, Robert Louis Stevenson, w:Treasure Island, Treasure Island
      • : He was plainly , for he tapped before him with a stick, and wore a great green shade over his eyes and nose...
        1. (comparable) fail, Failing to see, acknowledge, perceive.
        The lovers were to each other"s faults.
        1. (notcomparable) Of a place, having little or no visibility; as, a blind corner.
        2. (notcomparable) close, Closed at one end; having a dead end; as, a blind hole, a blind alley.
        3. (notcomparable) Without opening; as, a blind wall.
    adverb
    1. In three card brag, without looking at the cards dealt.
    blockhouse Tweet Definition of blockhouse Like Definition of blockhouse on Facebook
    noun
    1. A sturdy military fortification, often of concrete, with gunports.
    2. A reinforced building from which to control hazardous operations, such as an explosion or a rocket launch.
    1. (dated) A temporary wooden fortification with a projecting upper story.
    body Tweet Definition of body Like Definition of body on Facebook
    noun (bodies)
    1. The physical structure of a human or animal seen as one single organism.
    I saw them walking from a distance, their bodies strangely angular in the dawn light.
    1. The fleshly or corporeal nature of a human, as opposed to the spirit or soul.
    The is driven by desires, but the soul is at peace.
    1. A corpse.
    Her was found at four o'clock, just two hours after the murder.
    1. The torso, the main structure of a human or animal frame excluding the extremity, extremities (limbs, head, tail).
    The boxer took a blow to the .
    1. The largest or most important part of anything, as distinct from its appendages or accessory, accessories.
    The bumpers and front tyres were ruined, but the of the car was in remarkable shape.
    1. (archaic) The section of a dress extending from the neck to the waist, excluding the arms.
    Penny was in the scullery, pressing the of her new dress.
    1. An organisation, company or other authoritative group.
    The local train operating company is the managing for this section of track.
    1. A group of men or people having a common purpose or opinion; a mass.
    I was escorted from the building by a of armed security guards.
    1. A unified collection of details, knowledge or information.
    We have now amassed a of evidence which points to one conclusion.
    1. Any physical object or material thing.
    All bodies are held together by internal forces.
    1. Substance; physical presence.
    We have given to what was just a vague idea.
    1. Comparative viscosity, solidity or substance (in wine, colours etc.).
    The rioja, sadly, lacked .
    1. (programming) The code of a subroutine, contrasted to its signature and parameters.W:Subroutine, W
    boss Tweet Definition of boss Like Definition of boss on Facebook
    noun
    1. A person in charge of a business or company.
    • Chat turned to whisper when the entered the conference room.
      1. A person who oversees and directs the work of others; a supervisor; someone who fires people.
    My complains that I'm always late to work.
    1. A leader, the head of an organized group or team.
    They named him because he had good leadership skills.
    1. The head of a political party in a given region or district.
    He is the Republican in Kentucky.
    1. (context, mechanical) A protrusion, frequently a cylinder of material that extends beyond a hole.
    2. (architecture) A knob or projection, usually at the intersection of ribs in a vault.
    3. a hassock or footrest
    4. the strengthened area at the centre of a shield to the hand grip, which is attached to the rear of the boss. The boss is frequently made of metal even when the remainder of the shield is of wood or leather
    verb (boss, es)
    1. To exercise authoritative control; to lord over; to boss around; to tell someone what to do, often repeatedly.
    • You aren't my father. You can't me around!.
      1. (rare) To decorate with bosses; to emboss.
    adjective
    1. (slang) of excellent quality, first-rate
    bottle Tweet Definition of bottle Like Definition of bottle on Facebook
    noun
    1. A container, typically made of glass and having a tapered neck, used for holding liquids.
    Beer is often sold in bottles.
    1. The contents of such a container.
    I only drank a of beer.
    1. A container with a rubber nipple used for giving liquids to infants
    The baby wants a .
    1. (context, UK, informal) Nerve, courage.
    You don't have the to do that!
    He was going to ask her out, but he lost his when he saw her.
    verb (bottl, ing)
    1. (transitive) To seal (a liquid) into a bottle for later consumption.
    This plant bottles vast quantities of spring water every day.
    1. (context, transitive, UK) To feed (an infant) baby formula.
    Because of complications she can't breast feed her baby and so she bottles him.
    1. (context, UK, slang) To refrain from doing (something) at the last moment because of a sudden loss of courage.
    The rider bottled the big jump.
    1. (context, UK, slang) To strike (someone) with a bottle.
    broach Tweet Definition of broach Like Definition of broach on Facebook
    noun
    1. A series of chisel points mounted on one piece of steel.
    1. (alternative spelling of, brooch)
    verb (broach, es)
    1. (transitive) To make a hole in, especially a cask of liquor, and put in a tap in order to draw the liquid.
    2. (transitive) (figuratively) To begin discussion about (something).
      I broached the subject of contraceptives carefully when the teenager mentioned his promiscuity.
    bulk Tweet Definition of bulk Like Definition of bulk on Facebook
    noun
    1. size, mass or volume
    2. the major part of something
    3. (in food) fibre
    4. (nautical) a ship's cargo
    5. (bodybuilding): excess body mass, especially muscle
    6. In brane cosmology, a hypothetical higher-dimensional space within which our own four-dimensional universe may exist.
    verb
    1. to be, or appear to be, massive
    2. to grow in size; to swell or expand
    adjective
    1. being large in size, mass or volume
    buttress Tweet Definition of buttress Like Definition of buttress on Facebook
    noun
    1. (architecture) A brick or stone structure built against another structure to support it.
    2. Anything that serves to support something; a prop.
    byzant Tweet Definition of byzant Like Definition of byzant on Facebook
    noun
    1. (historic) A coin made of gold or silver, minted at w:Byzantium, Byzantium and used in currency throughout mediaeval Europe.
    • 1819: "Gramercy! good fellow," cried Prince John, "thou pleasest me " Here, Isaac, lend me a handful of byzants." " Walter Scott, Ivanhoe
    Byzantine Tweet Definition of Byzantine Like Definition of Byzantine on Facebook
    noun
    1. (rare) A native of Byzantium which was in the same place as is now Istanbul
    2. (historic) What belongs to the civilization of the East-Roman empire, as it was established after 331 A.D. when the capital was moved to Constantinoupolis (now Istanbul) and up to 1453 when it was conquered by the Turks.
    adjective
    1. Overly complex or intricate.
    2. (rare) Of or pertaining to Byzantium.

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