Relate Architectural Terms to the Plan

  • Entablature
  • Cornice
  • Acroterion
  • Raking Sima
  • Raking Geison
  • Pediment
  • Geison
  • Frieze
  • Triglyph
  • Metope
  • Architrave
  • Column
  • Capital
  • Abacus
  • Echinus
  • Shaft
  • Drum
  • Flutes
  • Krepis
  • Stylobate
  • Stereobate


The complex upper structure of the temple, supported by columns and consisting of an architrave, frieze, and pediment.


An architectural ornament placed on a flat base (an acroter or plinth) and mounted at the apex or lower extremities of a pediment.


The projecting, uppermost horizontal member of a classical entablature.

Raking Sima

The terracotta or stone gutter of atop a pediment, placed above the raking cornice. The raking sima is continuous, while other simas on the flanks of a building are provided with downspouts for rainwater, often in the form of lions’ heads.

Raking Geison

A molded projection that follows the slope of the pediment; also called the raking cornice.


The face of a pediment between the raking cornice of the pediment and the horizontal cornice of the entablature.


A horizontal molded projection that runs the full perimeter of a Greek temple, also known as a corona or cornice.


The middle division of an entablature, between the cornice and the architrave. The Doric frieze is a band subdivided by triglyphs and metopes. The Ionic and Corinthian friezes are often embellished with continuous sculpture.


The characteristic ornamental panel in a Doric frieze, consisting of a vertical raised block composed of three vertical bands separated by indented flutes or channels.


Panels arranged between triglyphs located in a Doric frieze, either plain or decorated with sculptural reliefs. In the Parthenon, the metopes are carved with figural reliefs depicting mythological scenes such as the Battle of the Lapiths and Centaurs.


The lowest element of a classical entablature (upper structure) that rests directly on the abaci of supporting columns. Also called the Epistyle.


An upright masonry element comprised of a base, shaft, and capital (except in the case of the Greek Doric Order, which has no base.) Columns arranged in rows form a colonnade. The space between each column is called the intercolumniation.


The upper part or head of a column, set over the shaft. Each architectural order has a distinctive capital.


The slab at the top of a capital, crowning the column and supporting the entablature. The Doric abacus is a simple square block.


A molding below the abacus of a Greek Doric capital.


The body of a column between the capital and the base.


The shaft blocks of a column.


The concave channels in the shafts of columns or pilasters, cut perpendicularly.


The stepped base of a Greek temple.


The topmost pavement step of a structure of three steps on which a colonnade is placed. The stylobate rests on the stereobate.


The continuous stone base located below the stylobate.