gable

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gable, gavel. Wall (gable-end), of a building, closing the end of a pitched roof: its top may be bounded by the two slopes of the roof forming parged verges or overhangs with barge-boards, or it may be a parapet following (more or less) the slopes of the roof behind. Thus Romanesque gables were steep, and often ornamented (as at Southwell Minster, Notts.), while First Pointed gables (e.g. Lincoln Cathedral) were extremely steep and pierced with windows to illuminate the space behind. Later medieval gables were usually very steep on domestic architecture, but in churches were almost invariably very slightly sloped, and had battlemented parapets, often richly decorated. Brick gables are sometimes finished with tumbling courses, and the cope or tumbling course is usually prevented from sliding or moving by means of a gable-springer, also called gable-shoulder, kneeler, skew-block, or skew-butt, at the foot of the gable. Not all gables are triangular. Other types of gable include:crow-stepped: with a stepped top, also called corbie-stepped;Dutch: with curved (often scrolled) sides and a pediment on top;hipped: with the top crowned by a small hipped roof;shaped: with the sides composed of convex and concave curves, usually with steps between them, and a semicircular or segmental top. Elaborate gables with windows were features of North-European (especially Flemish and German) C16 and C17 domestic architecture, revived in C19.

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ga·ble / ˈgābəl/ • n. the part of a wall that encloses the end of a pitched roof. ∎  (also gable end) a wall topped with a gable. ∎  a gable-shaped canopy over a window or door. DERIVATIVES: ga·bled adj.

gable

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gable XIV (gavel, gable). of twofold orig., — (i) ON. gafl and (ii) OF. gable, itself prob. — the ON. word; the corr. words in the other Gmc. langs. mean ‘fork’ (OE. ġeafol, OHG. gabala, G. gabel, etc.), the words for ‘gable’ showing another vowel-grade, e.g. MDu. ghevel, OHG. gibil (G. giebel), Goth. gibla.