5 Architectural Words

It’s always a good idea to know how to describe things. One of the things you really want to be able to describe in writing is your setting. To help out with that, here’s five words found in architecture that might come in handy.

Cantilever (noun) is a supporting bar fastened at one end. They’re frequently used in constructing bridges, but if you’ve lived in an upstairs apartment with a balcony, chances are you might have been standing on something that uses a cantilever as well.

Balustrade (noun) you probably know this as a stair or balcony railing. By technical definition, it’s a series of balusters along stairs, terraces and balconies. Bonus word: a baluster is the individual column in a railing.

a white stone staircase railing in a large white building
Photo by Chris Linnett via Unsplash

Fenestration (noun) has a relation to the word defenestration. Why? Fenestration refers to windows and doors in a building and how they’re arranged.

Enfilade (noun) is a special word you’ll want for describing the interiors of castles, manors and other large and imposing buildings. It comprises a series of rooms that are all opened to one another and producing the illusion of a long hallway.

A white door open to a dim room with two chairs and another door open to more rooms.
Photo by Peter Oswald via Unsplash

Muntin (noun) is the official name for the supporting bars between panes of glass. So now you can describe the windows and their glass supports with the official names.

Which architectural word is your favorite? Let me know in the comments below!


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