from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A horizontal structural member, such as a beam or stone, that spans an opening, as between the uprights of a door or window or between two columns or piers.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A horizontal structural beam spanning an opening, such as between the uprights of a door or a window, and which supports the wall above.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A horizontal member spanning an opening, and carrying the superincumbent weight by means of its strength in resisting crosswise fracture.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. In architecture, a horizontal piece of timber or stone resting on the jambs of a door or window, or spanning any other open space in a wall or in a columnar construction, and serving to support superincumbent weight.
  • n. See lingel.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. horizontal beam used as a finishing piece over a door or window


Middle English, from Old French, probably alteration of lintier, from Vulgar Latin *līmitāris, of a threshold (meaning influenced by Latin līmen, threshold), from Latin, on a border, from līmes, līmit-, boundary.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Middle English lyntel, from Middle French lintel, from Latin limitaris ("indicating a boundary") (Wiktionary)



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