American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
- n. A rounded convex molding, often a quarter section of a circle or ellipse.
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. In Roman and later architecture, a convex molding forming in section a quarter of a circle. Also called quarter-round. In Greek architecture moldings of this class are bounded by an arc of an ellipse, the curve being greatest toward the top, and resembling that of an egg, whence the molding derives its name. See also cuts under
GNU Webster's 1913
- n. (Arch.) A round, convex molding. See
- From Italian, from Latin ovum ("egg"). (Wiktionary)
- Obsolete Italian, diminutive of uovo, ovo, egg, from Latin ōvum. (American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
“THE RULE JOINT HINGE is used to connect the top and the drop leaf of a table in cases where continuity of design is desired, so that the edge of the top and the leaf will show an ovolo moulding when the table is either open or closed.”
“_ They are of similar size and general appearance to the ordinary ovolo moulding plane.”
“This stone spans a large channel 2ft. 3in. wide, within which is fitted a very thick lead pipe, gradually narrowed _horizontally_ and turned up under the _ovolo_ concave stone.”
“Resting on the platform, formed by these three steps, is a quarter circle pedestal,  on which stands a large stone 6ft. 8in. long and 9in. thick, over-hanging its base, and presenting a concave line towards the bath with an _ovolo_ section in its thickness.”
“The lip and base have the favorite ovolo moulding; the body has two rows of fluting separated by a transverse band, charged with leaves, and with a swan in the centre.”
“In the form shown in Fig. 73 we find, first, a row of sixteen simple leaves, like those of a reed, with the points of a second row showing between them; then a single row of eight acanthus leaves; then the scroll-work, supporting a palmette on each side; and finally an abacus whose profile is made up of a trochilus and an ovolo.”
“[Footnote: The egg-and-dart is found only on the ovolo, the leaf-and-dart only on the cyma reversa or the cyma recta (concave above and convex below) Both ornaments are in origin leaf-patterns one row of leaves showing their points behind another row.]”
“Finally, attention may be called to the ASTRAGAL or PEARL-BEADING just under the ovolo in Figs. 61, 71.”
“Its distinguishing features are the insertion between ovolo and spiral roll of a torus ornamented with a braided pattern, called a GUILLOCHE; the absence of the palmettes from the corners formed by the spiral roll; and the fact that the channel of the roll is double instead of single, which gives a more elaborate character to that member.”
“The ovolo has a convex profile, and is sometimes called a quarter-round; it is enriched with an EGG-AND-DART ornament The spiral roll may be conceived as a long cushion, whose ends are rolled under to form the VOLUTES.”
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Decorative trims and moldings and their elements, from room-scale to whole-building-scale, including, of course, ovolo.
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