Corbel

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A corbel

In architecture a corbel or console is a structural piece of stone, wood or metal sticking out from a wall to carry a superincumbent weight.[1] It is a type of bracket.[1] A corbel is a solid piece of material in the wall. A console, by comparison, is a piece applied to the structure. A piece of structural wood projecting in the same way was called a "tassel" or a "bragger" in the UK.[2] The technique of corbelling, where rows of corbels support a projecting wall or parapet, has been used since Neolithic, or New Stone Age, times.

The word "corbel" comes from Old French and derives from the Latin corbellus, a diminutive of corvus (a raven) which refers to the beak-like appearance.[2][3] Similarly, the French refer to a bracket-corbel, usually a load-bearing internal feature, as a corbeau (a crow).

References[change | change source]

  1. 1.0 1.1 Oxford English Dictionary Second Edition on CD-ROM (v. 4.0). Oxford University Press, 2009
  2. 2.0 2.1   "Corbel". Encyclopædia Britannica (Eleventh). (1911). Cambridge University Press. 
  3. Oxford English Dictionary gives a similar etymology but from Latin corvellum or corvellus