Martin and Oliver Webb Fine Stone Miniatures. Museum quality handmade miniatures of stone carvings for the collector and connoisseur.
Catalogue No.19.

A Stonemason's Dictionary
A pocket dictionary of masonry terms, names and expressions

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Parapet: A low wall which projects above the level of the eaves or gutter of a roof.

Parclose: A screen separating a chapel from the rest of a church.

Patcher’s Strop: A flat leather strap, or length of canvas used to lower a slab into position where all of the sides of the slab will fit flush to another stone (such as when replacing a single paving stone) making it impossible to lift the slab out again if adjustment to its final position is required. The strop can be used to lift the slab free, or ease its position, then when it is finally positioned the strop is gently pulled out leaving a perfectly fitting slab.

Pebble Dowel: Literally a pebble inserted half into the joint of one stone and half into the joint of the adjoining stone to prevent lateral movement.

Pedestal: The lowest division of an order, consisting base, die, capping or cornice.

Pediment: A triangular or segmental feature surrounded by cornice, usually above a doorway or window opening. When missing its apex, it is said to be a Broken Pediment.

Perpendicular Period: A period somewhat arbitrarily considered to run between 1377 and 1550. Renown for its window tracery comprising mainly vertical elements.

Pier: Free standing pillar used to support structures above.

Pilaster: A flat column partially built into a wall for ornamental purposes.

Pillar: See column.

Pinnacle: A small, usually solid, tower surmounted by a spire often decorated with crockets. They serve to increase the load over a particular part of the building and thus increase its resistance to lateral forces which is why they frequently appear on top of the piers of flying buttresses.

Piscina: A small stone dish built into the south wall near the chancel for washing communion vessels.

Pitcher: A broad, blunt nosed stonemason’s chisel used for removing large pieces of waste stone.

Plinth: Projecting base to a wall or column.

Pluck: If a piece of stone too great for the chisel being used is cut, the fracture sent from the chisel’s cutting tip will, instead of being the controlled cut desired, dip below the intended line and leave a rough hollow in the finished piece.

Plug And Feathers: A highly efficient and deceptively easy system of steel folding wedges which are used in the splitting of large blocks of stone. Holes are drilled along the line of the break, then the feathers are placed in, followed by the plug which is then tapped home expanding the feathers and causing the block to split. Dry wooden wedges can be used, which once driven home are soaked causing them to expand – much slower.

Plumb: Vertical. Hence Plumb Line, a weighted line used to determine verticality, and Plumb Bob the weight on the end of it.

Point: A stonemason’s pointed chisel for use with a mallet.

Porch: Roofed approach to a doorway.

Portico: A roofed porch having columns.

Portland Stone: Hard, white, high quality limestone from the Island of Portland. Famous for its use in war memorials, war grave headstones and a good many bank fascades.

Postern: A small private entrance to a church.

Precinct: The close and buildings surrounding and including a Cathedral.

Presbytery: The Part of the church occupied by the priests, usually the easternmost part of the church.

Priory: A monastery governed by a prior or prioress.

Punch: A stonemason’s pointed chisel for use with a hammer, used in roughly removing waste stone.

Purbeck Marble: A hard limestone (not strictly a marble) which can be polished. Quarried on the isle of Purbeck, Dorset.

Purlin: Longitudinal horizontal beam in a roof supported by the principal rafters.

Putlog: The horizontal poles of a scaffolding upon which rest the planks, or boards.

Putlog Hole: In the days of wooden scaffolding the putlogs were inserted into holes in the wall face. These Putlog Holes were filled as the scaffolding was dismantled and are often visible from the ground as regular small square patches.

Catalogue No.62.

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