|Martin and Oliver Webb Fine Stone Miniatures. Museum quality handmade miniatures of stone carvings for the collector and connoisseur.|
A Stonemason's Dictionary
A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
| Cable Moulding:
A moulding carved to look like a rope, or cable.
Caen Stone: Fine textured whitish limestone from Normandy.
Canpanile: A tower for housing bells.
Canopy: A small projecting roof above a door or other feature.
Cant Column: A column having a polygonal section.
Capital: A stone placed on the top of a column or pilaster to provide a larger load bearing upper surface. The capital usually being carved.
Carving Block: A squared off block left until last (when a piece of stone is being dressed) to accommodate a piece of carving to be added later. Sometimes carving blocks remain uncarved, for whatever reason, and can be seen on the finished building.
Caryatid: Columns carved in the form of humans.
Cathedral: The principal church of a diocese, containing the Cathedra, or Bishops throne.
Catherine Wheel Window: Circular window with radiating mullions.
Cauliflower: A derogatory term used to describe a badly made arch. When dressing voussoirs (the arch stones) there is a natural tendency to make them with too tight a radius, the resultant arch looks like a cauliflower!
Cavetto: A moulding whose hollow section is a quarter of an ellipse, or quadrant of a circle.
Celestory: Windows or opening set high in a wall above the roof of a side aisle.
Centering: The wooden frame which support arches and vaulting during construction.
Chad: A continuous row of chisel cuts angled into a flat surface.
Chain Block: A geared manually operated chain hoist with integral clutch.
Chamfer: A bevelled edge.
Chancel: The east end of the church, in which the alter is placed.
Chapter House: A room in which the chapter, or governing body of a Cathedral, meet.
Chase: A groove carved into a piece of masonry to receive lead flashing or similar.
Chevet: A form of apse in which the aisle continues round the end of the presbytery and has chapels radiating from it. Common in Europe.
Chevron: A Norman type of ornamentation formed by two deeply cut zig-zags.
Chick: Derogatory term for a slacker or shoddy worker.
Chilmark: Pale coloured limestone.
Choir: The part of the church occupied by the choir, often refers to the whole area east of the great screen.
Cinquefoil: A five petalled leaf form, as found in tracery.
Cinture: The ring at the top and bottom of a column, dividing it from the base and capital.
Claw Tool: A stonemasons chisel with replaceable toothed bits for its cutting edge.
Cloister: A covered walkway around an open space.
Clustered Column: A column comprising several small shafts around a larger one.
Cock And Hens: Term (probably colloquial) for alternate tall and shallow coping stones on top of a wall.
Cocks Comb: Variously profiled small plate steel tool with fine teeth for finishing fine limestone carvings.
Coffer: Recessed panel on the underside of a dome.
Colonade: A row of columns.
Column: A shaft, often round, octagonal, fluted or carved and usually having a base and capital, constructed to support a load.
Commode Step: The bottom step of a flight of steps, the end of the step being curved.
Conglomerate Stone: Rock composed of large rounded pebble like particles. Also called Pudding Stone.
Cope: Term applied to method of splitting stone.
Coping: Capping to a wall, to prevent rain soaking down from the top of the wall.
Corbel: A stone projecting from a wall to bear the weight of elements of the building such as floor joists or a protruding wall or parapet.
Corbel Table: The course of a wall which contains a row of corbels.
Cornice: The projecting moulding surmounting a section of wall.
Corona: The middle section of a cornice moulding, it has a vertical face and recessed horizontal soffit.
Crab: Hand wound winch used to hoist materials up scaffolding. The ones we used began their careers, I believe, winding barrage balloons up and down in World War 2, finally falling victim to health and safety regulations in 1980.
Cramp: Device (usually metal) for anchoring two stones together. Fixed using molten lead, or mortar.
Crenelation: Battlements on top of a wall.
Crick: A fissure through a block of stone, often invisible until the stone has been cut.
Crocket: Small bud like projections carved at regular intervals, often up the mitres of pinnacles
Crossing: The meeting point of the two transepts, the nave and chancel.
Crows Foot: A forked joggle.
Crypt: Chamber beneath a church
Cupola: A dome, usually refers to a small dome topped structure housing a bell.
Cusp: A pointed projection on the inside of an opening. Formed by the meeting of two smaller arcs joined to create an opening greater than the diameter of each.
Cutting ones Throat: An expression used to describe the mistake of carving a moulding straight through, when it should have an internal return (angle) carved in. Once the throat has been cut, the stone is scrap.
Cyma Recta: A moulding of ogee section (wave-like).
Cyma Reversa: The same as above, but with the curvatures reversed.
Cymatium: Crowning member of a cornice.