Architectural terms: Column

In architecture, the column is the upright, cylindrical, load-bearing component that stands free of the walls and supports the entablature and roof of a building. It is distinguished from a pillar — which may be square, oval, or rectangular — by always being round. Its three sections are the capital, the shaft, and the base. The three distinct types of columns in classical Greek architecture are the Doric, Ionic, and Corinthian. Columns in a row constitute a colonnade.

Source: 2001 Grolier Multimedia Encyclopedia, ©2000 Grolier Interactive Inc. — All Rights Reserved.
Relevant publications: Robin S. Oggins, Cathedrals (1996). Otto von Simson, The Gothic Cathedral: Origins of Gothic Architecture & the Medieval Concept of Order (1988). Stan Parry, Great Gothic Cathedrals of France (2001).
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