Architectural and Engineering Glossary


Hanging Stile

See hinge stile.

Hanse Arch, Haunch Arch

An arch having a crown of different curvature than the haunches,which are thus strongly marked;usually a basket handle or three centered or four centered arch. 

Hard Asphalt

Solid asphalt having a normal penetration,2 of less than10.

Hard Compact Soil

According to OSHA:all earth materials not classified as running or unstable.

Hard Finish

A finish coat consisting of gypsum plaster and lime troweled to a smooth,hard,dense finish.

Hard Gloss Paint

A high gloss enamel,formulated with a hard drying resin vehicle.

Hard Lead

See antimonial lead.

Hard Light

Light which produces well defined shadows.

Hard Oil

A hard drying interior oil or varnish.

Hard Pine

Same as yellow pine.

Hard Plaster,gauging Plaster,molding Plaster

A quick setting plaster to which retarder has been added to control set;used in the finish coat.

Hard Rock

Rock,which is found during excavation,that can be removed only by pneumatic tools or explosives.

Hard Solder

Any solder having a melting point above solders alloyed of lead and tin,e.g.,silver solder or aluminum solder;applied with a brazing torch.

Hard Steel

1.Steel that has undergone the process of hardening.2.Same as high steel.

Hard Water

Water containing solutions of mineral salts (sulfates of calcium and magnesium,carbonates,and bicarbonates).Also see water softener.


Nearly vitrified;said of clay product which has been fired at a high temperature;usually has relatively low absorption and high compressive strength.

Hard-burnt Brick, Hard-fired Brick

A clay unit that has been molded to the desired shape and then treated in a kiln at a high temperature to increase its mechanical strength,moisture resistance,and weather resistance.See brick.

Hard-burnt Plaster

Same as Keene’s cement.


Descriptive of a stage of dryness of a paint film when hard twisting pressure of the thumb will not mar the surface.It is then ready for service,rubbing,or application of a topcoat.

Hard-finish Plaster

Same as Martin’s cement.


A hard surfaced road.


A building material manufactured of wood fiber compressed into sheets;used extensively in building,e.g.,as interior panels or durable siding.

Hardened Glass

Same as tempered glass.


1.A chemical (including certain fluosilicates or sodium silicate) applied to concrete floors to reduce wear and dusting.2.A material added to a paint or varnish vehicle to increase the gum or resin content,or to increase rate of oxidation,so as to cause an increase in hardness of the drying film.3.The chemical component in a two component coating or adhesive which causes the resin component to harden.


1.The resistance of wood,rubber,sealant,plastic,or metal to plastic deformation by compression or indentation;in wood, hardness is generally related to density.Common methods of measurement include the Rockwell,Brinell,Scleroscope,and Vickers tests.2.A property of a paint or varnish film that is a measure of its ability to withstand damage from marring,abrasion,etc.3.The degree of hardness,applied to water,based on the amount of calcium and magnesium salts in the water,expressed as grains per gallon or parts per million of calcium carbonate.4.See Mohs’ scale.


An extremely dense hard layer of soil,boulder clay,or gravel;difficult to excavate.


A type of gypsum neat plaster;used as a base coat.


Metal products used in construction,such as:bolts,nails,screws (see rough hardware); fittings,such as catches,hinges,locks,etc. (see finish hardware); tools.

Hardware Cloth

Steel wire woven screening;usually has a mesh 1⁄8  to 3⁄4  in.(3.18 to 9.53 mm);commonly galvanized.


1.A tree belonging to the angio sperms;usually broad leaved and deciduous,such as cherry,mahogany,maple,oak, etc.2.Wood cut from such trees.

Hardwood Dimension Stock

A hardwood stock that has been processed so that maximum waste is retained at the mill.

Hardwood Strip Flooring

Same as strip flooring.


Same as rock dash.


Same as rough cast.


A component of a sound containing more than one frequency which is an integral multiple of the lowest frequency

Harped Tendons

Same as deflected tendons.

Harsh Mixture

A concrete mixture which lacks desired workability and consistency owing to a deficiency of mortar or aggregate fines.

Harsh Mortar

Mortar that is difficult to spread. 

Hartford Loop,Underwriters’ Loop

An arrangement of the return piping connections to a steam boiler;used to balance pressures between the supply and return sides of the boiler and thus prevent boiler water from backing out of the boiler and into the return.


A fastening device consisting of a loop and a slotted hinge plate,normally secured with a padlock.


In ancient Rome,a room in which sales were made by public auction,under public authority.


An opening,equipped with an openable cover,in a roof or floor of a building for passage of people or goods from one level to another or for ventilation.

Hatched Molding

Same as notched molding.


A combination chopping and driving tool which has a wooden handle and a steel head,with a hammer face and a blade which is notched for pulling nails.

Hatchet Door

Same as Dutch door.

Hatchet Iron

A plumber’s soldering iron having a bit which is shaped like a hatchet.


See roof hatch.

Hathoric Capital

A column whose capital bears masks of the Egyptian cowhead goddess Hathor.Occasionally found in Egyptian Revival.

Hathoric, Hathor-headed

Pertaining to an Egyptian column with a capital which bears masks of the Egyptian cow head goddess Hathor.


Same as halfpace.