Definitions for voussoirvuˈswɑr
This page provides all possible meanings and translations of the word voussoir
wedge-shaped stone building block used in constructing an arch or vault
One of a series of wedge-shaped bricks forming an arch or vault.
one of the wedgelike stones of which an arch is composed
Origin: [F., akin to vote an arch, a vault.]
A voussoir is a wedge-shaped element, typically a stone, used in building an arch or vault. Although each unit in an arch or vault is a voussoir, two units are of distinct functional importance: the keystone and the springer. The keystone is the center stone or masonry unit at the apex of an arch. The springer is the lowermost voussoir, located where the curve of the arch springs from the vertical support or abutment of the wall or pier. The word is a mason's term borrowed in Middle English from French verbs connoting a "turn". Each wedge-shaped voussoir turns aside the thrust of the mass above, transferring it from stone to stone to the springer's bottom face, which is horizontal and passes the thrust on to the supports. Voussoir arches distribute weight efficiently and take maximum advantage of the compressive strength of stone, as in an arch bridge. In Eastern Romanesque and Arab architecture the voussoirs are often in alternating colors, usually red and white.
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