Cast of Characters
Depression Era Art
Double Exposure
Keeping Us in Stitches
Matter of Style
Classical Revival
Gothic Revival
Rococo Revival
Renaissance Revival
Hand Tools
Activities & Resources
Making Connections


acanthus [n]   a plant with large segmented leaves, and the decorative form patterned after it 
anthemion [n]   an important motif in classical ornament, perhaps based on the acanthus flower, that looks like a honeysuckle flower
apron [n]   a decorated piece of wood around and below a shelf
arch [n]   the curved or pointed opening of a support (like the top of a doorway or window) 
artifact [n]   a human-made object, usually useful, like a tool
artisan [n]   a person who makes decorative useful objects 
boss [n]   a decorative knob or stud applied to furniture 
burl [n]   the strongly grained wood that comes from an outgrowth on the trunk or branch of a tree: the swirled grain is often used in veneer 
cabriole [n]   style of leg in the shape of the hind leg of a deer or other leaping animal
cartouche [n]   a scroll-like tablet shape that encloses writing or a symbol 
C-curve [n]   a single round curve
column [n]   a supporting pillar
cornice [n]   a horizontal molded top that projects outward. 
     arts [n]
  objects that are made and used in everyday life, such as furniture and dishes 
dentil [n]   an ornament made of evenly spaced small square blocks placed on the lower edge of a molding. They resemble teeth, from which they derive their name. 
dowel [n]   a round wooden peg that is glued into two drilled holes where two parts of a piece of furniture are joined. It appears in less-expensive furniture of the late 19th and early 20th century
finial [n]   an ornament on top of an important end decoration, such as a gable, or pedestal 
Forty-niners [n]   people who went to California in 1849 to hunt for gold after the huge gold strike at Sutter's Mill
frieze [n]   a decorative horizontal band
gilt [adj]   covered with gold, or shiny like gold
hope chest [n]   a wooden chest in which a girl stored textiles she made, saving them for use in her house after she married 
     lines [n]
  shallow decorative lines cut into a wood surface
lancet [n]   an ornament that is narrow and pointed like the end of a spear 
lotus [n]   a water plant with large leaves and pink flowers
lyre [n]   a stringed instrument in the harp family, a symbol of Apollo, the Greek god of music
     Age [n]
  the period of history between the Fall of the Roman Empire (A.D. 300) and the Renaissance (A.D. 1400) 
molding [n]   a narrow decorative band of wood found at the top of furniture and columns, and around door and window openings 
motif [n]   a single design 
ormolu [n]   brass that imitates gold
ornate [adj]   heavily decorated
panel [n]   a flat rectangular piece of wood set in a frame. Panels were popular on the sides of desks, sideboards, and wardrobes, and as doors
papyrus [n]   an Egyptian plant that was used for making paper. The flower of this plant was a popular decoration. 
parlor [n]   a sitting room reserved for special occasions
pendant [n]   an ornament that hangs downward from a structure
prismatic ornament [n]   a three-dimensional square or rectangular decoration applied to furniture or buildings. It appeared in Italian Renaissance decoration and rustic Roman buildings.
quatrefoil [n]   an ornament or tracery with four sections or lobes, such as a four-petaled flower form 
rails [n]   the horizontal sides of a panel frame
relief carving [n]   raised carving on a flat surface 
rose [n]   a three-dimensional carved rose flower, often with leaves in Rococo Revival design; a rose-shaped or flower-shaped negative space in Gothic tracery
S-curve [n]   a double inverted round curve
scroll [n]   an ornament that looks like a rolled length of paper, the kind used for writing in ancient and medieval times
foliage [n]
  a design of painted or carved leaves that curve into spirals
stiles [n]   the vertical sides of a panel frame
  equally arranged on both sides of a center line 
tracery [n]   lacy openwork design made of interlacing lines
trefoil [n]   an ornament with three lobes, often in negative space such as tracery
  covered with padding and a decorative cover, such as in a sofa or chair seat 
urn [n]   a large vase
veneer [n]   in wood furniture: a thin layer of fine wood glued onto a base of lesser quality wood. It is less expensive than using a solid piece of fine wood. 


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