Tuesday, November 25, 2014

word of the day: pediment

The word of the day is pediment:

1. (in classical architecture) a low gable, typically triangular with a horizontal cornice and raking cornices, surmounting a colonnade, an end wall, or a major division of a façade.
2. any imitation of this, often fancifully treated, used to crown an opening, a monument, etc., or to form part of a decorative scheme.
3. Geology. a gently sloping rock surface at the foot of a steep slope, as of a mountain, usually thinly covered with alluvium.
earlier pedament, pedement, alteration, by association with Latin pēs (stem ped-) foot, of earlier peremint, perhaps an unlearned alteration of pyramid; (def 3) by construal as pedi- + -ment (dictionary.com)
"Careme created pastry temples in evocative ruin, resting on marzipan rocks; pastry pediments and pyramids and Chinese pavilions."
 - Adam Gopnik, "Bakeoff: What is happening to our pastry?", 3 November 2014 The New Yorker 

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