Appendix B

Glossary of Terms  

addition - A new part on an existing building or structure. 
alteration - A visible change to the exterior of a building or structure. 
anchor - A metal clamp, often of fanciful design, (such as a star) fastened on the outside of a wall to the end of a tie rod connecting with an opposite wall, to prevent bulging. 
American Foursquare - One of the few indigenous American styles. It is a variant of what has come to be called the Prairie School of architecture and is representative of the early work of Frank Lloyd Wright. 
annex - A subsidiary structure near or adjoining a larger main building. 
apex - The highest point, peak, or tip of any structure. 
arch - A curved or pointed construction which spans an opening. 
arch - A curved or pointed construction which spans an opening. 
architectural - Pertaining to architecture, its features, characteristics, or details. 
architecture - The art and science of designing and building structures in keeping with aesthetic and functional criteria. 
architrave - The lowest member of an entablature; the beam 
that spans from column to column. 
armory - A building used for storage of military equipment. A weapons manufacturing plant. 
Art Deco - A decorative style widely used in the architecture of the 1930s; characterized by sharp angular or zigzag surface forms and ornaments. 
attic - A story built above the wall cornice. 
awning - A rooflike shelter of canvas or other material extending over a doorway or window. 

balcony - A projecting platform, sometimes supported from below, sometimes cantilevered, enclosed with a railing or balustrade. 
balloon frame - Wooden building framing where all vertical structural elements of the exterior bearing walls consist of single studs which extend the full height of the frame. 
baluster - One of a number of short vertical members, often circular in section, used to support a railing. 
balustrade - An entire railing system (as along the edge of a balcony) including a top rail and its balusters, and sometimes a bottom rail. 
bargeboard - The decorative board along the roof edge of a gable that conceals the rafters. 
basement - Usually the lowest story of a building, either partly or entirely below grade. 
basket weave - A checkerboard pattern of bricks. 
batten - A narrow strip of wood applied to cover a joint along the edges of two parallel boards (as in board and batten). 
bay - A vertical division of a building marked by fenestration or other architectural features. 
bay window - A window that projects from an exterior wall. 
bead - A molding used in ornamenting a given surface. 
beam - A structural member whose prime function is to carry transverse loads, as a joist, girder, rafter, or purlin. 
bearing wall - A supporting part of a structure. 
Beaux Arts architecture - Historical and eclectic design on a monumental scale, as taught at the Ecole des Beaux Arts in Paris, in the nineteenth century. 
belfry - A room at or near the top of a tower which contains bells and their supporting timbers. 
belt course - See string course. 
blank wall, blind wall, dead wall - A wall whose whole surface is unbroken by a window, door, or other opening. 
blank window, blind window, false window - A recess in an external wall, having the external appearance of a window, to give symmetry. 
blind - See shutter. 
board and batten - Vertical siding on a structure that has narrow strips covering the vertical joints between the boards. 
bond - An arrangement of masonry units (such as bricks) to provide strength, stability, and beauty. 
brace - A metal or wood member which is used to stiffen or support a structure. 
bracket - A decorative support beneath a projecting floor, window, or cornice. 
brick - A solid or hollow masonry unit of clay or shale, molded into a rectangular shape and then fired in a kiln. 
brick nogging - Brick-work laid in the spaces between timbers in a wood frame partition. 
broken pediment - A decorative element - usually over a door or a window - in which the sloping sides do not meet, creating an opening that contains a decorative feature. 
bulkhead - The structural supporting wall under the display windows of a storefront. 
Bungalow - A type of dwelling that originated in British India but became popular world-wide, often as worker housing, because it was economical to build. 
buttress - An exterior mass of masonry set at an angle to a wall to provide strength and support. 

canopy - A covered area which extends from the wall of a building to protect an entrance. 
cantilever - A structural member which projects beyond its 
supporting wall or column. 
capital - The upper portion of a column or pilaster. 
Carpenter Gothic - The application of Gothic motifs by artisan builders in wood, during the nineteenth century. 
cased-in timber - Finished millwork which covers or encases a structural member such as a porch post. 
casement window - A window which swings open along its entire length. 
cast iron - Iron that is formed by pouring the molten metal into a mold and letting it cool. 
caulk - Material used to fill or close seams and crevices in order to make them watertight. 
clapboards - A wood siding commonly used as an exterior covering on a wood frame building. It is applied horizontally and overlapped, with the grain running lengthwise. 
chimney - The vertical structure containing a passage or flue, which carries smoke and gases from a fire or furnace by means of a created draft. 
chimney pot -An earthenware or metal pipe fitted on top of a chimney to increase draft and reduce or disperse smoke. 
Classical architecture - The architecture of Hellenic Greece and Imperial Rome, upon which the Italian Renaissance and subsequent styles such as the Classic Revival based their development. 
Classic Revival - An architectural movement based on the use of Roman and Greek forms. 
Colonial architecture - Architecture transplanted from homelands to overseas colonies, such as English Georgian architecture of the eighteenth century in Virginia. 
Colonial Revival - The reuse of Georgian and Colonial design, toward the end of the nineteenth and into the twentieth century. Typically found in banks, churches, and suburban homes. 
column - A vertical member, such as a post or a pillar, which supports a load. 
Common bond, American bond - A bond in which every fifth or sixth brick course consists of headers, the other courses being stretchers. Widely used because such brickwork can be laid quickly. 
coping - A protective cap, top, or cover of a wall, parapet, or chimney; often of stone, terra-cotta, concrete, or metal. Protects the masonry below from the penetration of water from above. 
corbeling - Courses of masonry that project out in a series of steps from the wall, often part of the cornice at the top of a facade. 
corner board - A board used as trim on the external corner of a wood frame structure and against which the ends of the siding are fitted. 
cornice - The exterior trim of a structure where the roof meets the wall. 
course - A layer of masonry units (such as bricks) running horizontally in a wall and bonded with mortar. 
cresting - A decorative ridge on a roof, usually constructed of ornamental metal. 
crossbeam - Any transverse beam in a structure, such as a joist. 
cupola - A small structure built on top of a roof or building. 

dentil - One of a band of small, square blocks forming part of a cornice. 
dependency - A subsidiary building near or adjoining a principal structure. 
dome - A curved roof structure; often hemisphirical in shape. 
door - An entranceway. A barrier which swings, slides, tilts, or folds to close an opening. 
door header - The uppermost member of a door frame. 
door jamb - The vertical member on each side of a door (also called the doorpost). 
door sill - The horizontal member, usually a board, covering the floor joint on the threshold of a door. 
dormer - A structure projecting from a sloping roof, usually housing a window or a vent. 
dormer window - A vertical window which projects from a sloping roof, placed in a small gable. 
double window - Two windows, side by side, which form a single architectural unit. 
downspout, leader - A vertical pipe used to conduct water from the roof to the ground. 
dressed lumber - Lumber having one or more of its faces planed smooth. 
dressed stone - Stone that has been worked to a shape; the faces to be exposed are smooth. 
drip cap - A horizontal molding, fixed to a door or window frame, to divert water from the top rail, causing it to drip beyond the outside of the frame. 
Dutch Colonial architecture - The building style prevalent in the Dutch-settled parts of the North American colonies in the seventeenth century, particularly in New York and the Hudson Valley. 

eaves - The lower edge of a sloping roof; that part of a roof which projects beyond the wall. 
elevation - A drawing showing the elements of a building in plane. 
English basement - A basement whose windows are above ground (as opposed to being sunken). 
English bond - Brickwork with alternate courses of headers and stretchers. 
Entablature - 1. The elaborated beam member carried by columns horizontally divided into architrave (below), the frieze, and cornice (above). 2. The upper section of a wall, generally supported on columns or pilasters. On storefronts, the entablature is often used to display signs. 
extension - A wing or structure added to an existing building. 
eyebrow - A low dormer on the slope of a roof. It has no sides and the roofing is carried over it. 
eyebrow window - 1. A bottom-hinged, inward-opening sash in the uppermost level of a Greek Revival house, or the like. 2. A window in an eyebrow. 

fabric - The basic elements of a building. 
facade - The exterior face of a building which constitutes the architectural front. 
fanlight - A semi-circular window over the opening of a door, with radiating muntins in the form of an open fan. 
fascia - A flat horizontal member or molding with little projection, commonly under eaves and cornices. 
Federal style - The Classical Revival style of architecture that emerged in the United States at the end of the eighteenth and the beginning of the nineteenth century. 
fence - A barrier enclosing or bordering a yard. 
fenestration - The arrangement of the openings in a building. 
finial - An ornament which terminates the point of a gable or spire. 
flashing - Pieces of sheet metal used to weatherproof joints and angles, as where a roof comes in contact with  a wall or chimney. 
flat arch, jack arch, straight arch - An arch that is horizontal or nearly horizontal. 
Flemish bond - Brickwork in which each course consists of headers and stretchers laid alternately; each header is centered with respect to the stretchers above and below it. 
Flemish diagonal bond - A bond in which a course of alternate headers and stretchers is followed by a course of stretchers, resulting in a diagonal pattern. The old Maury School exhibits both Flemish and Flemish diagonal bonds. 
flue, chimney flue - An incombustible and heat-resistant passage in a chimney to carry away combustion products from a fireplace, furnace, or boiler. 
flute - A groove or channel, usually one of many such parallel grooves, used decoratively, as along the shaft of a column. 
flying buttress - A characteristic feature of Gothic construction in which the lateral thrust of a roof is taken up by a bar of masonry, carried on an arch, and a solid pier or buttress. 
footprint - The extent of a building's impression in the earth. 
form - The particular shape of a building. 
foundation - The supporting member of a wall or structure. 
frame house - A house of wood frame construction, usually sheathed and covered with a siding material. 
framing - A system of structural woodwork. 
frieze - The middle horizontal member of a entablature, above the architrave and below the cornice. 

gable - The vertical triangular portion of the end of a building having a double-sloping roof, from the cornice or eaves to the ridge of the roof. 
gable roof - A roof having a gable at one or both ends. 
gambrel roof - A roof which has two pitches on each side (frequently found in barns). 
garland - An ornament in the form of a band or wreath of leaves, fruits, or flowers. 
Georgian architecture - The prevailing style of the eighteenth century in Great Britian and the North American colonies, so named after George I, George II, and George III (1714-1820). 
gingerbread - The highly decorative woodwork applied to Queen Anne style houses, or the like. 
girder - A large or principal beam used to support concentrated loads at isolated points along its length. 
glazing - Another term for glass or other transparent material used in windows. 
Gothic architecture - The architectural style of the Middle Ages in Western Europe. 
Gothic Revival - A movement originating in the eighteenth 
century and culminating in the nineteenth century which aimed at reviving the spirit and forms of Gothic architecture. 
Greek Revival - See Classic Revival. 
groundsill, ground beam, ground plate, mudsill, sole plate - In a framed structure, the sill which is nearest the ground or on the ground; used to distribute concentrated loads. 
gutter - A shallow channel of metal set below and along the eaves to catch and carry rainwater from the roof. 

half-timber framing - A form of construction where the spaces between a heavy timber framework are filled with bricks or plaster. 
hanging post, gatepost, hinge post, swinging post - The post on which a gate is hung. 
header - 1. A masonry unit (such as a brick), laid so its ends are exposed. 2. A framing member which crosses an opening such as a door or window and supports the ends of joists, rafters, etc., transferring their weight to parallel joists, rafters, etc. 
herringbone pattern - A diagonal zigzag pattern of bricks. 
hip - The external angle at the junction of two sloping roofs. 
hipped end - The sloping triangularly shaped end of a hipped roof. 
hipped gable - see jerkinhead. 
hip roof, hipped roof - A roof which slopes upward from all four sides of a building. 
hood - A cover placed above an opening to shelter it. 
hood molding - Projecting molding over a door or window. 

infill - A new structure built in a block of existing buildings. 
internal dormer - A vertical window in a sloped roof; it is not covered by a small pitched roof, but is set down from the slope of the main roof. 
International style - The functional architecture devoid of regional characteristics. Created in Western Europe and in the United States during the early twentieth century. 
ironwork - Wrought or cast iron; usually decorative and often elaborate. 
Italianate style - The eclectic form of country-house design, fashionable in England and the United States in the 1840s and 1850s, characterized by low-pitched, heavily bracketed roofs, asymmetrical informal plan, square towers, and often round-arched windows. 

jack arch - See flat arch. 
jamb - A vertical member at each side of a door or window frame. 
jerkinhead, clipped gable, hipped gable - The end of a roof when it is formed into a shape between a gable and a hip. 
joist - One of a series of parallel timber beams used to support floor and ceiling loads; supported in turn by larger beams, girders, or bearing walls. 

keystone - The central block of a masonry arch.  Until the keystone is in place, the arch is not truly functional. 
king post - In a truss, as for a roof, a vertical member extending from the apex to the tie beam. 

lancet, lancet window - A narrow window with a sharp pointed arch; much used in Gothic architecture. 
landmark - Any building, structure, or place which has a special character or a special historical or aesthetic interest or value to a community. 
lattice - A network, often diagonal, of narrow thin strips of wood or iron, used as screening. 
lean-to - A small extension to a building with a roof (of a single slope) whose supports lean against the building. 
light - 1. An aperture through which daylight is admitted to a building's interior. 2. A pane of glass. 
lintel - A horizontal structural member over an opening, which carries the weight of the wall above it. 
loft - Unceilinged space beneath a roof. 
louver - An assembly of sloping, overlapping slats (fixed or 
adjustable) designed to admit air or light in varying degrees while excluding rain and snow. 

mansard roof - A roof having a double slope, similar to a gambrel roof, but where the lower slope is longer and steeper than the upper slope. 
marquee - A fixed metal and glass canopy over an entrance to a building. 
massing - The bulk or size of a building. 
modillion - A horizontal bracket, usually in the form of a scroll, that helps support a cornice. 
molded brick - A specially shaped brick, usually for decorative work. 
molding - A member of construction or decoration that introduces a variety of outlines or contours in edges or surfaces. Found on cornices, bases, and door and window jambs. 
mortar - The mixture of lime or cement or a combination of both with sand and water, used as a masonry bonding agent. 
mortar joints - The finished mortar surface between masonry units. 
motif - A principal repeated element in an ornamental design. 
mud room - A small entryway where muddy footwear may be removed. 
mudsill - A sill usually laid directly on the ground. 
mullion - A vertical member separating (and often supporting) windows, doors, or panels set in a series. 
muntin - A secondary framing member to hold panes of glass within a window or glazed door. 

Neo-Classical style - The dominant style of architecture during the first half of the twentieth century.  Closely related to Colonial Revival but much more ornate in many of its details. 
nogging - The filling of brick-work between timbers of a frame wall. 

open pediment - See broken pediment. 
order - In classical architecture, a particular style of column with its entablature having standardized details. The Greek orders were Doric, Ionic, and Corinthian. 
ordinary - A tavern, in early American communities. 
orientation - The placement of a structure on a site with regard to local conditions of sunlight, wind, drainage, and street frontage. 
ornament - In architecture, every detail of shape, texture, and color that is deliberately used or added to attract the attention of an observer. 
overhang - The projection of an upper story or roof beyond a story immediately below. 

Palladian motif - A door or window opening in three parts, divided by posts, with a lintel flat over each side, but arched over the center. 
pane - A framed sheet of glass in a window or door. 
panel - A portion of a flat surface that is recessed below the 
surrounding area, sometimes set off by molding or other decorative device. 
parapet - In an exterior wall, the part entirely above the roof. 
patina - A thin oxide film which forms on a metal. 
pavilion - On a facade, a prominent portion usually central or terminal, identified by projection, height, or special roof forms. 
pediment - The triangular gable end of a roof. 
pendant - A suspended feature or hanging ornament. 
pier - A column designed to support concentrated loads. 
pilaster - A decorative feature that imitates a pier or a pillar but is not a supporting member, often used as a simulated pillar on porches in entrances. 
pitch - The degree of slope of a roof. 
plate - In wood-frame construction, timber laid horizontally in a wall, on top of a wall, or on the ground to receive other timbers or joists. 
pointing - In masonry, the final treatment of joints by the troweling of mortar into them. 
porch - A structure attached to a building to shelter an entrance or to serve as a semi-enclosed space; usually roofed and generally open sided. 
portico - A small porch forming the entrance and centerpiece of a facade; usually consisting of a pedimented roof supported by columns. 
preservation - Maintenance of the existing form, integrity, and material of a building or structure. 
purlin - Timber laid horizontally to support the rafters on which a roof covering is laid. 

Queen Anne style - Eclectic style of domestic architecture of the 1870s and 1880s in England and the United States; misnamed after Queen Anne, but actually based on country-house and cottage Elizabethan architecture. 
quoin - In masonry, the stones which form the external corner of a building; sometimes distinguished decoratively from the adjacent masonry. In Fredericksburg, some brick buildings have sandstone or granite quoins. 

rafter - One of a series of inclined members to which a roof covering is fixed. 
rain leader - See downspout. 
raking - Slope, as in a roof pitch. 
rehabilitation - The process of restoring a building to a usable condition. 
rendering - A perspective or elevational drawing of a project with artistic delineation of materials, shades, and shadows. 
replication - A copy or reproduction of an original feature. 
repoint -To remove deteriorated mortar and replace it with new mortar. 
restoration - The process of returning a building to its original form and condition by removing later work and/or replacing missing earlier work. 
retaining wall - A wall that bears against the earth and resists its lateral movement. 
retrofit - To fit a building with parts or equipment not available at the time of original construction. 
Revival architecture - The use of older styles in new architectural movements, such as Gothic Revival, Greek Revival, Colonial Revival, etc. 
ridge - The horizontal line at the junction of the upper edges of two sloping roof surfaces. 
riprap - An arrangement of irregularly broken and random sized stones thrown together without any attempt at regular structural arrangement. 
riser - The vertical face of a stair step. 
Romanesque Revival - The reuse in the nineteenth century of the massive Romanesque style of construction characterized by heavy arches and dramatic asymmetrical effects. 
roof - The cover of a building, including the roofing and all other materials necessary to carry and maintain it on the walls or uprights. 
row house - One of an unbroken line of houses sharing one or more sidewalls with its neighbors. 
rustic joint - In stone masonry, a deeply sunk mortar joint that has been emphasized by having the edges of the adjacent stones chamfered or recessed below the surface of the stone facing. 

saltbox - A wood-framed house, more common to colonial New England than to Virginia, which has a short roof pitch in front and a long roof pitch sweeping close to the ground, in back. 
sash, window sash - Any framework of a window; may be movable or fixed; may slide in a vertical plane (as in a double-hung window) or pivot (as in a casement window). In describing window configuration, it is common to refer to the number of panes in the upper and lower halves of the sash (i.e. six-over-six, three-over-one, nine-over-nine, etc.) 
scale - Relative or proportionate size. 
screen - Any construction whose essential function is merely to separate, protect, seclude, or conceal, but not to support. 
scupper - An opening in a wall or parapet that allows water to drain from a roof. 
Second Empire style - A stylistic designation named after the French Second Empire of Napoleon III (1852-1870), but referring to grand eclectic architecture in the 1860s and early 1870s. 
setback - The interval between a building and a property line. 
shake - Any thick hand-split shingle or clapboard, usually edge-grained; formed by splitting a short log into tapered radial sections. 
sheathing - The covering placed over the exterior framing of a building; provides a base for the application of wall or roof covering. 
shed dormer - A dormer window whose eave line is parallel to the eave line of the main roof instead of being gabled. 
shed roof - A roof shape having only one sloping plane. 
shingle - A roofing unit of wood, asphaltic or fiberglass material, slate, tile, concrete, asbestos cement, or other material cut to stock sizes; used as an exterior covering on sloping roofs and side walls; applied in an overlapping fashion. 
shutters - Solid or louvered movable window coverings. 
sidelight - A framed area of fixed glass alongside a door or window opening. 
siding, weatherboards - The finish covering of an exterior wall of a frame building. 
sill - 1. A horizontal timber, at the bottom of a wood frame, which rests on the foundation. 2. The horizontal bottom member of a door or window frame. 
skirt-roof - A false roof between stories of a building. 
skylight - An opening in a roof or ceiling, fitted with glass, to admit daylight. 
soffit - The finished undersurface of any overhead building component, such as an arch, balcony, beam, cornice, or lintel. 
soldier course - A course of bricks where the stretchers (long sides) of the bricks are set vertically. 
soleplate - A horizontal timber which serves as a base for the studs in a stud wall or partition. 
spall - A small fragment split off from the face of a stone or masonry unit by a blow or by action of the elements. 
span - The interval between two terminals of a construction. 
spire - Any slender pointed construction surmounting a building. 
stabilization - The reestablishment of a weather resistant enclosure and structural stability of an unsafe or deteriorated property. 
stack - A vent, as for plumbing. 
standing seam metal - A roof covering of long sheets of metal one edge of which is folded over the edge of the adjoining sheet and crimped, forming a raised seam. 
step - A stair unit that consists of one tread and one riser. 
stile - One of the upright structural members of a frame, as at the outer edge of a door or a window sash. 
stoop - A platform or small porch at the entrance of a house. 
stop - The molding or trim on the inside face of a door or window frame against which the door or window closes. 
story - The space in a building between floor levels, or between a floor and a roof. 
Streamline Moderne style - Architectural style during the 1930s based on the streamlined effect of air gliding over an airfoil. 
stretcher - A masonry unit laid horizontally with its length in the direction of the face of the wall. 
string course - A horizontal band or course, projecting beyond or flush with the face of a building.  Also called a belt course. 
stringer - A long, heavy horizontal timber which connects the posts in a frame which supports a floor. 
stucco - An exterior finish, usually textured; composed of portland cement, lime, and sand mixed with water. 
surround - An encircling border or decorative frame. 

terra-cotta - Hard, unglazed fired clay; used for ornamental work and roof and floor tile. 
texture - The tactile and visual quality of a surface or substance other than its color. 
tie beam - In roof framing, a horizontal timber, connecting two opposite rafters to prevent them from spreading. 
threshold - A strip fastened to the floor beneath a door; may provide weather protection at exterior doors. 
tracery - The openwork pattern within the upper part of a Gothic window. 
transom - 1. The cross-bar separating a door from a window, panel, or louver above it. 2. An opening over a door or window. 3. The window area above the display windows and door of a commercial storefront. 
transom light - A glazed light above the transom. 
tread - The horizontal upper surface of a step in a stair. 
trellis - An arbor or framework, sometimes including lattice, for the support of vines or other vegetation. 
triglyph - A Frieze ornament consisting of slightly raised vertical bands separated by V-shaped grooves. 
truss - A structure composed of a combination of members, usually in a triangular arrangement, so as to constitute a rigid framework. 
turned work - Wood pieces having a circular outline, such as columns and balusters; usually cut on a lathe. 

valance - The overhanging edge of an awning where a sign may be lettered. 
valley - The trough formed by the intersection of two inclined planes of a roof. 
vent - An opening, as in a wall, serving as an outlet for air, smoke, fumes, or the like. 
veranda - A covered porch or balcony, extending along the outside of a building, planned for summer leisure. 
Vernacular architecture - A mode of building based on regional forms and materials. These structures are not generally designed by an architect. 

wainscot - A decorative or protective facing applied to the lower portion of a wall. 
water table - A projecting string course placed to divert rainwater from a building. 
weatherboards - Wood siding used as the exterior covering on a building frame construction. 
window - An opening in an external wall of a building to admit light and (usually) air; usually glazed. 
wing - A subsidiary part of a building extending out from the main portion. 
wrought-iron - Iron that is hammered or forged into shape, usually decorative, either when the metal is hot or cold. 








Blank window

Broken pediment


Chimney pot



Drip cap


Flemish diagonal bond


Gambrel roof



Lancet window


Mansard roof


Palladian window





Soldier course

 Standing seam metal roof




Water table

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