Architectural and Engineering Glossary


Height Board

A gauge used in the construction of stairs for setting the heights of the risers.

Height Zoning

See zoning.

Held Water

Same as capillary water.

Helical Hinge

A special type hinge for a double acting door.

Helical Reinforcement

A steel reinforcing rod in the form of a helix. 

Helical Stair

A spiral stair.helicline A spiral ramp.


A device used to orient a light source (representing the sun) with respect to an architectural model;calibrated in terms of latitude,time of day,and season of the year;used to study daylighting techniques and to illustrate the shadows cast by direct sunlight.


Same as shade screen.


A facility where helicopters land,take off,and are maintained or repaired.


1.Any spiral,particularly a small volute or twist under the abacus of the Corinthian capital.2.The volute of an Ionic capital.

Helix Stair

Same as spiral stair.


Pertaining to the classical Greek period,roughly from 480 B.C. to the death of Alexander in 323 B.C.


Characteristic of the style of Greek art after the death of Alexander in 323 B.C.

Helm Roof

A roof having four faces,each of which is steeply pitched so that they form a spire;the four ridges rise to the point of the spire from a base of four gables.


The handle of an ax,adz,hatchet,etc.


The projecting spiral of a volute of an Ionic capital.


1.A semicircular arena.2.A room or division of a room in the form of a semicircle.3.A semicircular recess.


A semicircular alcove,sufficiently large to provide seating for a group of people.


The half channel on each of the two sides of a triglyph.


A hydrate which contains one- half molecule of water to one molecule of the compound;the most common such material is partially dehydrated gypsum (plaster of paris).

Hemihydrate Plaster

Same as plaster of paris. 


The portion of a triglyph which sometimes occurs in an internal angle of a returned frieze which has triglyphs in it.


Wood of a coniferous tree of the US. 

Hemlock Spruce

See eastern hemlock.


1.The narrow side of a chimney stack.2.Same as haunch.


See poultry house.

Henostyle In Antis

Having a single column in the front of a building,set between antae.

Henri II (Deux) Style

The second phase of the early French Renaissance,named after Henri II (1547–1559) who succeeded Francis I.Italian classic motifs began to supplant the Gothic elements,both in architecture and in decoration.The west side of the Court of the Louvre (1547–1559) is an outstanding example.(See illustration p. 504.)

Henri IV (Quatre) Style

The early phase of the Classical period of French architecture,named after Henry IV (1589–1610),preceding the architecture of Louis XIII and Louis XIV.It is particularly strong in domestic architecture and town planning arrangements.The Place des Vosges in Paris (1605–12) is the outstanding example.(See illustration p. 504.)

HEPA Filter

A high efficiency particulate absolute filter capable of trapping and retaining at least 99.9% of asbestos fibers greater than 0.3 microns in length.


A portico having seven columns,at one or at each end.(See illustration p. 504.)


A temple or sacred enclosure dedicated to the goddess Hera.

Herbaceous Border

A permanent border of nonwoody perennials,often against an evergreen background or a stone wall.


A rectangular post,usually of stone and tapering downward,surmounted by a bust of Hermes or other divinity,or by a human head.


1.A private retreat.2.A secluded hideaway.3.A house of certain monastic orders.


A building or sacred enclosure dedicated to a hero,usually erected over a grave. 

Herringbone Bond

In masonry,a type of raking bond in which the rows of headers are laid at right angles to each other so as to form, in plan,a series of zigzags.

Herringbone Bridging

A system of braces between joists to stiffen the joists,to hold them in place,and to distribute their load; these braces alternate in direction along the joists,giving rise to a herringbone-like pattern.Also called herring bone strutting,cross bridging,diagonal bridging.

Herringbone Pattern

A way of assembling,in diagonal zigzag fashion,brick or similar rectangular blocks for paving and for masonry walls;also strips of wood or other finishing materials having rectangular shapes for facing walls or ceilings.


Same as hearse.


A unit of frequency,abbr.Hz;one cycle per second.

Hesitation Set

See false set.


1.Roughly dressed,as stone shaped with mallet and chisel.2.Roughly shaped with an axas hewn logs.


On drawings,abbr.for “hexagon” or “hexagonal.”

Hexapartite Vault

Same as sexpartite vault.

Hexastyle, Exastyle

Having six columns,as at one end or at each end of a portico


On drawings,abbr.for height.

Hick Joint

See rough cut joint.


1.A threaded fitting for mounting a lighting fixture in an outlet box,or on a stud or pipe.2.A tool for bending conduit or pipe.


A tough,hard,strong wood of North America;has high shock resistance and high bending strength.