Architectural and Engineering Glossary

Quarter-round Light

A window,often one of a pair,that has the shape of one quarter of a complete circle.


Descriptive of a stair which,in its progress from top to bottom,turns 90.

Quarter-turn Stair

Same as quarterpace stair.


Same as quartersawn.

Quartered Partition

A partition formed with quarters.


1.A method of obtaining a representative sample by dividing a circular pile of a larger quantity into four equal parts and discarding opposite quarters,continuing the process until the desired size of sample is obtained.2. Studs in a building wall. 3.A small scantling.

Quartering House

A subsidiary building that provided housing for servants in the 17th century;usually near or adjoining a principal structure in the mid Atlantic area of America.

Quarterpace Stair

A stair having a quarter turn.Compare with halfpace stair.

Quarterpace, Quarterpace Landing,quarter Space Landing

A stair landing,often square in plan,between two flights which make a right-angled (90) turn.

Quartersawn, Rift Sawn

Descriptive of lumber sawn so that the growth rings intersect the wide face at an angle of 45or greater.Also see edgegrained.


The most abundant form of mineral silica;very hard,will scratch glass.

Quartz Glass,silica Glass

Glass consisting entirely of pure,or nearly pure,amorphous silica;has the highest heat resistance and ultraviolet transmittance of all glasses.

Quartz-halogen Lamp

A lamp having a tungsten filament in a quartz envelope;quartz is used instead of glass to permit higher temperatures,higher currents,and therefore greater light output.

Quartz-iodine Lamp

Obsolete term for a tungsten halogen lamp.


A variety of sandstone composed largely of granular quartz which is cemented by silica forming a homogeneous mass of very high tensile and crushing strengths;esp.used as a building stone,as gravel in road  construction,and as an aggregate in concrete.

Quartzitic Sandstone

A type of sandstone in which most of the grains are quartz and the cementing material is silica;intermediate between normal sandstone and quartzite.


A four lobed pattern divided by cusps;also see foil.

Quatrefoil Column

A column whose cross section is a quatrefoil.

Quattrocento Architecture

Renaissance architecture of the 15th Italy.

Queen Anne Sash

A window having an ornate upper sash and a plain lower sash.

Queen Anne Arch

An arch over the triple opening of the so called Venetian or Palladian window,flat over the narrow side lights, round over the larger central opening.

Queen Anne Style

1.English architecture during the reign of Queen Anne, from 1702 to 1714; primarily country houses and many houses in the suburbs of London,often of red brick.Characterized by a dignified simplicity and moderateness in scale;avoidance of the appearance of massiveness;hipped roofs hidden behind parapets; sash windows.2.An eclectic style of domestic architecture primarily of the 1870s and 1880s in England and the United States;mis named after Queen Anne;actually based on country house and cottage Elizabethan architecture.A blending of Tudor Gothic,English Renaissance,Flemish,(and in the United States on Colonial elements),houses in this style usually are characterized by an asymmetrical façade with emphasis on verticality;often,a front facing gable; commonly,timber framed and irregular in plan and elevation;decorative trusses,bracketed posts,gingerbread in the form of spindlework,finials,and castiron cresting; textured shingles,masonry with variations in wall surface treatment and color;carved orna mentation, and patterned horizontal siding; contrasting wall materials used in combination with the various stories decorated differently;one or more conspicuous porches often set within the main structure of the house;typically,an irregularly shaped,steeply pitched roof, ornamented gables and ridges,overhanging eaves,bargeboards,second story projections,various shaped ornamental dormers,cresting, finials, pendants,and/or pinnacles; shingles laid in decorative patterns;tall ornamented chimneys;frequently,a tower;a paneled main entry door typically located off the central axis of the façade.Occasionally called Victorian Queen Anne styleto avoid confusion with the 18th- century Queen Anne style,1 from which it dif- fers markedly.

Queen Bolt

Same as queen rod.

Queen Closer

A brick which has been cut in half along its length;it is of normal thickness but half normal width;used to complete a course or to space normal sized bricks.

Queen Closure

Same as queen closer.

Queen Post

One of the two vertical supports in a queen post truss.

Queen Rod, Queen Bolt

A metal rod which serves as a queen post.

Queen Truss

See queen post truss.

Queen-post Roof

A roof supported by two queen posts.

Queen-post Truss, Queen Truss

A roof truss having two vertical posts between the  rafters  and the tie beam;the upper ends of the vertical posts are connected by a straining piece, 1 (such as a tie rod or cable).


Said of a metal which was first heated and then cooled by contact with a liquid,gas,or solid,for the purpose of hardening or tempering.

Quetta Bond

A bond in brickwork having vertical voids in which reinforcement is placed (usually connecting to foundations,floors, and roof);the voids then are filled with mortar.

Quick Condition

A soil condition in which water flows upward with sufficient velocity to reduce significantly the bearing capacity of the soil through a decrease in intergranular pressure.

Quick Disconnect Device

1.A hand operated device that provides a means for connecting and disconnecting a gas appliance.2.A connector (to a gas supply) that is equipped with an automatic means for shutting off the supply when the device is disconnected.

Quick Set

See flash set,false set.

Quick Soil

A soil deposit that is reasonably stable if undisturbed,but suddenly becomes loose when disturbed.

Quick Sweep

Descriptive of any carpentry or joinery work having a small radius of curvature.


Descriptive of a device having a high opening speed regardless of how it is operated.

Quick-change Room

In a theater,a dressing room on or near the stage,where actors may make quick changes of costume or makeup.

Quick-closing Valve

A valve or faucet whose automatic closure is fast acting.


lime A hydraulic lime.

Quick-response Early-suppression Sprinkler

A fast response sprinkler that is listed as providing fire suppression of specific hazards.

Quick-response Extended Coverage Sprinkler

A fire sprinkler that is listed as providing the characteristics of both a quick response sprinkler and an extended coverage sprinkler.

Quick-response Sprinkler

A fire sprinkler that combines the characteristics of a fast response sprinkler and a spray sprinkler.


See lime.


Fine sand,sometimes with an admixture of clay,which is saturated with water so that it has no bearing capacity at its surface;fine sand in a quick condition.

Quilt Insulation

A blanket type thermal insulation having,on one or both principal faces,a flexible facing that is stitched or quilted.

Quilted Figure

See blister figure.


An arrangement of elements so that four are symmetrically placed around a central one.

Quincunx Plan

Same as cross-in-square plan.