Illustrated Architecture Dictionary............... Illustrated FURNITURE Glossary
A small rectangular block - a tooth-like cube - used in a series forming a molding under Ionic and Corinthian and sometimes Doric cornices
"... derived originally from the ends of the squared timbers which carried the cornice of the primitive Ionic temple, and in the earlier stone examples copied more or less literally; it subsequently in the 4th century was introduced as a part of the bedmould of the cornice of the Ionic Order..." - The 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica" Mouldings (online October 2014)
Latin: "dentes" = teeth (Dentils supposedly resemble a row of teeth.)
Found in classical Greek and Roman architecture and derivatives, including Beaux Arts Classicism, Classical Revival, Federal, Georgian Revival, Greek Revival, Neoclassicism, Renaissance Revival, Second Empire
The Greeks were first to declare that architecture was based on the proportions and form of the human body. "Capital," for example, comes from the word "caput," or head.
In addition, dimensions were measured in terms of a human unit like the foot (piede in Italian).
Dentil molding is the exact shape of a toothy dental smile on a jack-o'-lantern.
And need we explain the folds of a groin vault?
- The Annotated Arch, by Carol Strickland. Kansas City: Andrews McMeel Pub., 2001, p. 32
... dentils with their vertical slits...
Doric of the Baths of Diocletian; Plate 19, Roland Fréart de Chambray, A Parallel of the Antient Architecture with the Modern (John Evelyn edition, 1664)
North piazza entablature, Monticello
- Calder Loth, Classical Comments: The Doric of the Baths of Diocletian and its Variants (Online Oct. 2014)
Common medieval moulding in Venice consisting of a projecting band with its upper and lower parts cut alternately into notches sloping to the middle of the band, producing the effect of a double row of staggered dentils.
- A Dictionary of Architecture and Landscape Architecture | 2000 | (online October 2014)
Small rectangular blocks, generally separated by evenly spaced open areas
See also: Open dentil
Examples from Buffalo:
- Illustration above: Albright-Knox Art Gallery
- 361 Porter Avenue
- St. Anthony's RC Church
- Forest Lawn Delaware Avenue entrance gate
- Frank H. Goodyear Mausoleum Section 23, Forest Lawn Cemetery
- 24 Chapin Parkway
- 109 Chapin Parkway
- Fairfield Library
- Engine #15 Fire Station
- Coatsworth House
- Root Building
- Ellicott Square Building
- Erlanger Theater Demolished 2007
- Knox House, 800 Delaware Avenue
- Knox Farm Main House Gouged dentils
- Ralph G. Kittinger House Gouged dentils
- Sears House Gouged dentils
- Furniture: George III bow front bookcase and chest - Dana Tillou Fine Arts