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spire

spire, high, tapering structure crowning a tower and having a general pyramidal outline. The simplest spires were the steeply pitched timber roofs capping Romanesque towers and campaniles. In later Romanesque architecture the spire was commonly octagonal, topping a square tower. Transition between the two shapes was effected by filling each corner with a decorative pinnacle or a small turret. With Gothic development the spire became more elaborate. Generally the tower proper was capped by a parapet, behind which rose the stone spire, its edges finished with a molding and adorned with crockets. The corner pinnacles, with their niches, gables, and crockets, were often joined to the spire roof by flying arches. In France spires (called flèches) sometimes were placed over the two western towers of the cathedrals; at Chartres they are of two different periods, Romanesque and Gothic. In England the central tower of a cathedral often had a spire; at Lichfield one crowns each western tower as well. The ultimate elaboration in Gothic spires was attained with the addition of openwork tracery, as in the flamboyant example of Rouen (Tour de Beurre). The Germans, particularly, favored intricate openwork compositions, as at the cathedrals of Strasbourg (1015–1439) and Vienna (15th cent.). England in the late 17th cent. gave the spire new form in the numerous churches that Sir Christopher Wren built for London after the great fire. These were either the roof type, with richly curved baroque outlines, or cupola compositions with such classical features as columns and pediments. St. Martin-in-the-Fields (1722–26), built by James Gibbs, illustrates the Georgian spire or steeple with its receding stages of classic architecture terminated by a steep pyramidal roof. It was an influential prototype for the slender, classical spires of American colonial churches.

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"spire." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Encyclopedia.com. 21 Oct. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"spire." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Encyclopedia.com. (October 21, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/reference/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/spire

"spire." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Retrieved October 21, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/reference/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/spire

spire

spire. Tall structure, circular, polygonal, or square on plan, rising from a roof, tower, etc., terminating in a slender point, especially the tapering part of a church-steeple. Often of stone, and occasionally of brick, it was also built as a timber-framed structure clad with copper, lead, shingles, slates, tiles, or thin stone slabs. If square, a spire rises directly from the tower, but octagonal spires required the top of the tower not covered to be occupied by pinnacles or by an arrangement (broach) forming a transition between the square and octagon resembling part of a pyramid and sloping towards the spire (broach-spire (a) ). Other types of spire include:crown spire: spire carried on buttress-like elements, i.e. with the structure fully exposed, resembling the arched forms at the top of a crown (b);Hertfordshire spike: small needle-spire rising from a tower behind a parapet;needle-spire: very tall slender spire rising from a tower behind a parapet, like a Hertfordshire spike but much bigger, taller, and finer (c);spike: short spire, flèche, or spirelet;splay-foot: spire with a base opening out at a flatter pitch and forming eaves over the tower.

Bibliography

Gwilt (1903);
W. Papworth (1887);
J. Parker (1850);
Sturgis et al. (1901–2)

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"spire." A Dictionary of Architecture and Landscape Architecture. . Encyclopedia.com. 21 Oct. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"spire." A Dictionary of Architecture and Landscape Architecture. . Encyclopedia.com. (October 21, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/education/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/spire

"spire." A Dictionary of Architecture and Landscape Architecture. . Retrieved October 21, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/education/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/spire

spire

spire1 / spī(ə)r/ • n. a tapering conical or pyramidal structure on the top of a building, typically a church tower. ∎  the continuation of a tree trunk above the point where branching begins, esp. in a tree of a tapering form. ∎  a long tapering object: spires of delphiniums. DERIVATIVES: spired adj. spir·y adj. spire2 • n. Zool. the upper tapering part of the spiral shell of a gastropod mollusk, comprising all but the whorl containing the body.

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"spire." The Oxford Pocket Dictionary of Current English. . Encyclopedia.com. 21 Oct. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"spire." The Oxford Pocket Dictionary of Current English. . Encyclopedia.com. (October 21, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/spire-1

"spire." The Oxford Pocket Dictionary of Current English. . Retrieved October 21, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/spire-1

spire

spire1 †stalk, stem OE.; (dial.) reeds XIII; shoot, sprout XIV; tapering portion of a steeple XVI (earlier sphere XV). OE. spīr = MLG., MDu. spier, spīr, MHG. spīr (G. spier tip of blade of grass).

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"spire." The Concise Oxford Dictionary of English Etymology. . Encyclopedia.com. 21 Oct. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

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spire

spire2 coil, spiral. XVI. — F. -L. spīra — Gr. speîra coil, winding
.

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"spire." The Concise Oxford Dictionary of English Etymology. . Encyclopedia.com. 21 Oct. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

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spire

spire In the shell of a gastropod (Gastropoda), all the whorls other than the body whorl.

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"spire." A Dictionary of Earth Sciences. . Encyclopedia.com. 21 Oct. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"spire." A Dictionary of Earth Sciences. . Encyclopedia.com. (October 21, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/science/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/spire

"spire." A Dictionary of Earth Sciences. . Retrieved October 21, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/science/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/spire

spire

spire A young timber tree, the lowest branch of which is at a considerable height.

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"spire." A Dictionary of Ecology. . Encyclopedia.com. 21 Oct. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"spire." A Dictionary of Ecology. . Encyclopedia.com. (October 21, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/science/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/spire-0

"spire." A Dictionary of Ecology. . Retrieved October 21, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/science/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/spire-0

spire

spire A young timber tree, the lowest branch of which is at a considerable height.

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"spire." A Dictionary of Plant Sciences. . Encyclopedia.com. 21 Oct. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"spire." A Dictionary of Plant Sciences. . Encyclopedia.com. (October 21, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/science/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/spire-1

"spire." A Dictionary of Plant Sciences. . Retrieved October 21, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/science/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/spire-1

spire

spireacquire, admire, afire, applier, aspire, attire, ayah, backfire, barbwire, bemire, briar, buyer, byre, choir, conspire, crier, cryer, defier, denier, desire, dire, drier, dryer, dyer, enquire, entire, esquire, expire, fire, flyer, friar, fryer, Gaia, gyre, hellfire, hire, hiya, ire, Isaiah, jambalaya, Jeremiah, Josiah, Kintyre, latria, liar, lyre, Maia, Maya, Mayer, messiah, mire, misfire, Nehemiah, Obadiah, papaya, pariah, peripeteia, perspire, playa, Praia, prior, pyre, quire, replier, scryer, shire, shyer, sire, skyer, Sophia, spire, squire, supplier, Surabaya, suspire, tier, tire, transpire, trier, tumble-dryer, tyre, Uriah, via, wire, Zechariah, Zedekiah, Zephaniah •homebuyer

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"spire." Oxford Dictionary of Rhymes. . Encyclopedia.com. 21 Oct. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

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SPIRE

SPIRE (spaɪə) Navigation spatial inertial reference equipment

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"SPIRE." The Oxford Dictionary of Abbreviations. . Encyclopedia.com. 21 Oct. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

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"SPIRE." The Oxford Dictionary of Abbreviations. . Retrieved October 21, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/spire