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Glossary of Architecture Terms
beginning with letter S
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sacellum Tweet Definition of sacellum Like Definition of sacellum on Facebook
noun (plural:sacella)
  1. a small chapel, as a monument within a church
  2. (ancient Rome) a shrine open to the sky, sometimes used for sacrifical purposes, or in honor of the divine
sexpartite Tweet Definition of sexpartite Like Definition of sexpartite on Facebook
adjective
  1. In six parts.
Windows Vista is a sexpartite operating system
shaft Tweet Definition of shaft Like Definition of shaft on Facebook
noun
  1. the long narrow body of a spear or arrow
  2. a beam or ray of light
  3. any long thin object, such as the handle of a tool, one of the poles between which an animal is harnessed to a vehicle, the drive shaft of an engine
  4. the main axis of a feather
  5. (lacrosse) the long narrow body of a lacrosse stick
  6. a long narrow passage sunk into the earth, for mining etc
  7. a vertical passage housing a lift or elevator
  8. a ventilation or heating conduit
  9. a malicious act, as in "to give someone the shaft"
skyscraper Tweet Definition of skyscraper Like Definition of skyscraper on Facebook
noun
  1. A very tall building with a great number of floors.
  2. (context, archaic) A small sail atop a mast of a ship.
slip Tweet Definition of slip Like Definition of slip on Facebook
noun
  1. An act or instance of slipping.
  2. A women's undergarment worn under a skirt or dress.
  3. A small piece of paper.
  4. A berth for a boat or ship.
  5. A mistake or error (slip of the tongue.)
  6. (uncountable) In ceramics, a thin, slippery mix of clay and water.
  7. (cricket) Any of several fielding positions to the off side of the wicket keeper, designed to catch the ball after being deflected from the bat; a fielder in that position (See first slip, second slip, third slip, fourth slip and fifth slip.)
  8. The difference between the speed of a rotating magnetic field and the speed of its rotor.
verb (slip, p, ing)
  1. (intransitive) To lose one's traction on a slippery surface; to slide due to a lack of friction.
  2. (intransitive) To err.
  3. (transitive) To pass (a note, etc.)
    • 1883, w:Robert Louis Stevenson, Robert Louis Stevenson, w:Treasure Island, Treasure Island
    • : We slipped along the hedges, noiseless and swift...
socle Tweet Definition of socle Like Definition of socle on Facebook
noun
  1. A low plinth or pedestal used to display a statue or other art work.
  2. (mathematics) The sum of the minimal submodules of a given R-module of a given ring R.
  3. (mathematics) (grouptheory) The subgroup generated by the minimal normal subgroups of a given group.
soffit Tweet Definition of soffit Like Definition of soffit on Facebook
noun
  1. The visible underside of an arch, balcony, beam, cornice, staircase, vault or any other architectural element.
solar Tweet Definition of solar Like Definition of solar on Facebook
noun
  1. (obsolete) A loft or upper chamber forming the private accommodation of the head of the household in a medieval hall; a garret room.
adjective
  1. Of or pertaining to the sun; proceeding from the sun; as, the solar system; solar light; solar rays; solar influence.
  2. (context, astrology, obsolete) Born under the predominant influence of the sun.
  3. Measured by the progress or revolution of the sun in the ecliptic; as, the solar year.
  4. Produced by the action of the sun, or peculiarly affected by its influence.
solarium Tweet Definition of solarium Like Definition of solarium on Facebook
noun (pl=solariums, pl2=solaria)
  1. A room, with many windows, exposed to the sun
  2. A room with sunbeds in it.
  3. An establishment where one can rent sunbeds.
spandrel Tweet Definition of spandrel Like Definition of spandrel on Facebook
noun
  1. (architecture) The space (often triangular) between the outer curve of an arch (the extrados) and a straight-sided figure that bounds it; the space between two contiguous arches and a straight feature above them
  2. (architecture) The triangular space under a stair; the material that fills the space
  3. (architecture) A horizontal member between the windows of each storey of a tall building
    1. An oriental rug having a pattern of arches; the design in the corners of such a rug, especially in a prayer rug
  4. (genetics) A phenotypic characteristic that evolved as a side effect of a true adaptation
spire Tweet Definition of spire Like Definition of spire on Facebook
noun
  1. A slender stalk or blade in vegetation; as, a spire grass or of wheat.
  2. A tapering body that shoots up or out to a point in a conical or pyramidal form. Specifically (Arch.), the roof of a tower when of a pyramidal form and high in proportion to its width; also, the pyramidal or aspiring termination of a tower which can not be said to have a roof, such as that of Strasburg cathedral; the tapering part of a steeple, or the steeple itself.
  3. A tube or fuse for communicating fire to the chargen in blasting.
  4. The top, or uppermost point, of anything; the summit.
splay Tweet Definition of splay Like Definition of splay on Facebook
verbto splay (splays, splayed, splaying)
  1. To display; to spread.
  2. To dislocate, as a shoulder bone.
  3. To spay; to castrate.
  4. To turn on one side; to render oblique; to slope or slant, as the side of a door, window, etc.
adjective
  1. Displayed; spread out; turned outward; hence, flat; ungainly; as, splay shoulders.
  2. A slope or bevel, especially of the sides of a door or window, by which the opening is made larged at one face of the wall than at the other, or larger at each of the faces than it is between them.
spring Tweet Definition of spring Like Definition of spring on Facebook
noun
  1. (countable) Traditionally the first of the four seasons, in which plants spring from the ground and trees come into blossom; typically regarded as being from March 21 to June 20 in the Northern Hemisphere and from September 21 to December 20 in the Southern Hemisphere.
  2. (countable) Spring tide; a tide of greater-than-average range, that is, around the first or third quarter of a lunar month, or around the times of the new or full moon.
  3. (countable) A place where water emerges from the ground.
  4. (uncountable) The property of a body of springing to its original form after being compressed, stretched, etc.
  5. (countable) A mechanical device made of flexible or coiled material that exerts force when it is bend, bent, compressed or stretched.
  6. (context, countable, nautical) A rope attaching the bow of a vessel to the stern-side of the jetty, or vice versa, to stop the vessel from swaying.
  7. (context, countable, slang) An erection of the penis.
  8. (countable) The source of an action
    • 1748. David Hume. Enquiries concerning the human understanding and concerning the principles of moral. London: Oxford University Press, 1973, ยง 9.
    • : ... discover, at least in some degree, the secret springs and principles, by which the human mind is actuated in its operations?
verb (springs, springing, sprang, sprung)
  1. To start to exist.
Sometimes the ideas to life fully formed.
  1. To jump or leap.
He sprang up from his seat.
  1. (slang) To release or set free, especially from prison.
springing Tweet Definition of springing Like Definition of springing on Facebook
noun
  1. (context, uncountable) The action of the verb to spring
  2. Verb, spring.
  3. (context, uncountable) A set of springs in a vehicle, etc.
  4. (context, countable, archaic) A spring
  5. Noun, spring of an arch.
adjective
  1. That springs or spring.
squinch Tweet Definition of squinch Like Definition of squinch on Facebook
noun
  1. (architecture) A structure constructed between two adjacent walls to aid in the transition from a polygonal to a circular structure; as when a dome is constructed on top of a square room.
steeple Tweet Definition of steeple Like Definition of steeple on Facebook
noun
  1. a tall tower, often on a church, normally topped with a spire
  2. a spire
stele Tweet Definition of stele Like Definition of stele on Facebook
noun
  1. (archaeology) A tall, slender stone monument, often with writing carved into its surface
    • Alternative forms: stela
    • (botany) The central core of the root and shoot system, especially including the vascular tissue.
stereobate Tweet Definition of stereobate Like Definition of stereobate on Facebook
noun
  1. The foundation of a stone building
  2. A stylobate
stilted Tweet Definition of stilted Like Definition of stilted on Facebook
adjective
  1. (context, of language) stiff and artificially formal
stop Tweet Definition of stop Like Definition of stop on Facebook
noun
  1. A (usually marked) place where line buses or trams halt to let passengers get on and off.
They agreed to see each other at the bus .
  1. An action of stopping; interruption of travel.
That was not planned.
  1. A device intended to block the path of a moving object; as, a door stop.
  2. (context, linguistics) A consonant sound in which the passage of air through the mouth is temporarily blocked by the lips, tongue, or glottis.
  3. A symbol used for purposes of punctuation and representing a pause or separating clauses, particularly a full stop, comma, colon or semicolon.
  4. Short for a stopper, used in the phrase 'pull out all the stops'.
  5. (context, music) A knob or pin used to regulate the flow of air in an organ.
The organ is loudest when all the stops are pulled.
  1. (context, tennis) A very short shot which touches the ground close behind the net and is intended to bounce as little as possible.
  2. (context, zoology) The depression in a dog"s face between the skull and the nasal bones.
The in a bulldog's face is very marked.
verb (stop, p, ed)
  1. (intransitive): To cease moving.
I stopped at the traffic lights.
  1. (intransitive): To come to an end.
The riots stopped when police moved in.
Soon the rain will .
  1. (transitive): To cause (something) to cease moving.
The sight of the armed men stopped him in his tracks.
  1. (transitive): To cause (something) to come to an end.
The referees stopped the fight.
  1. (transitive): To close an aperture.
He stopped the wound with gauze.
  1. (intransitive): To stay a while.
He stopped for two weeks at the inn.
  1. (intransitive): To tarry.
He stopped at his friend's house before continuing with his drive.
adverb
  1. prone, Prone to halting or hesitation.
He -started his car.
He"s still.
story Tweet Definition of story Like Definition of story on Facebook
noun (stories)
  1. An account of real or fictional events.
The book tells the of two roommates.
  1. A lie.
You"ve been telling stories again, haven"t you?
  1. A floor or level of a building (mainly US - see storey).
Our shop was on the fourth of the building — we had to install an elevator.
stria Tweet Definition of stria Like Definition of stria on Facebook
noun (stri, ae)
  1. A stripe, usually one of a set of parallel stripes.
stringer Tweet Definition of stringer Like Definition of stringer on Facebook
noun
  1. Someone who threads something.
  2. Someone who leads someone along.
  3. A horizontal timber that supports upright posts.
  4. A local freelance reporter for a national or regional newspaper.
  5. (surfing) Wooden strip running lengthwise down the centre of a surfboard, for strength.
Line up the 1/2 template with the (or draw a center line) — Stephen Pirsch http://www.surfersteve.com/shaping.htm
  1. (baseball, slang) An 1800s baseball term meaning a hard-hit ball.
  2. (fishing) A cord or chain, sometimes with additional loop, loops, that is threaded through the mouth and gills of caught fish.
Janice pulled the bluegill out of the water and added it to her .
studio Tweet Definition of studio Like Definition of studio on Facebook
noun
  1. An artist's or photographer's workshop or the room in which an artist works.
  2. An establishment where an art is taught.
  3. A place where radio or television programs, records or films are made.
  4. A company or organization that makes films, records or other artistic works.
  5. A studio flat / apartment, especially one having the kitchen, living area, and sleeping area in a single room.
study Tweet Definition of study Like Definition of study on Facebook
noun (studies)
  1. The act of acquiring knowledge on a subject through concentration.
The study of languages is fascinating.
  1. A room in a house intended for reading and writing.
  2. An artwork made in order to practise or demonstrate a subject or technique.
verb (stud, i, ed)
  1. To acquire knowledge on a subject through concentration on prepared learning materials.
surround Tweet Definition of surround Like Definition of surround on Facebook
noun
  1. (context, UK): Anything, such as a fence or border that surrounds something.
verb
  1. (transitive) To encircle or simultaneously extend on all sides of something.
    • 2005, w:Plato, Plato, Sophist. Translation by Lesley Brown. w:Stephanus pagination, 230c.
    • : and this way they get rid of those grand and stubborn opinions that them.
      1. (transitive) To enclose or confine something on all sides so as to prevent escape.
syrinx Tweet Definition of syrinx Like Definition of syrinx on Facebook
noun (pl=syrinxes, pl2=syringes)
  1. A set of pan-pipes.
    • 1982, John Fowles, Mantissa:
    • : Actually, to cut a long story short, he began...well, playing with a rather different sort of pipe. Or , as we called it. He obviously thought he was alone.
    • 2006, Thomas Pynchon, Against the Day, Vintage 2007, p. 247:
    • :Inside, somebody was playing a duet on and lyre.
      1. A narrow channel cut in rock, especially in ancient Egyptian tombs.
      2. (zoology) The voice organ in birds.

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