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Letter "H" Glossary

half-timber — Vernacular building technique in which the spaces between the heavy supporting timbers are filled with brick, wattle and daub, or other material.

hall church (German: Hallenkirche) — Church design with side aisles as high or nearly as high as the nave; this architectural form is found most often in Germany.

hall crypt — A crypt in the form of a large space of uniform height subdivided by columns.

hammer beam — Short, horizontal elements projecting inward at the top of interior walls, attached to the foot of main rafters in a roof and generally supporting arched roof braces.

hanging arch — An arch which has, or appears to have, no vertical supports.

haunch — The middle section between the crown and the springing of anarch.

hemicycle — The semicircular space at the east end of a basilican church plan.

high altar — The primary altar in the church located in the main apse or hemicycle.

historiated capital — A capital designed with one or more figures of humans or animals, sometimes combined with architectural settings or foliage. The figures may be decorative or carry symbolic, moral or narrative meaning and may constitute a narrative sequence such as scenes from the Life of Christ. Historiated capitals were most commonly used in the Romanesque from the late eleventh to mid-twelfth centuries and are sometimes found in monastic cloisters.

historiated initial — An illuminated initial containing a figure or a group of figures, which are either decorative or represent a narrative scene related to the text.

horseshoe arch — Arches in which the curves are carried below the springing line so that the opening at the bottom of the arch is less than its greatest span, common in Islamic architecture.

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