from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun An apartment or dwelling situated on the roof of a building.
  • noun A residence, often with a terrace, on the top floor or floors of a building.
  • noun A structure housing machinery on the roof of a building.
  • noun A shed or sloping roof attached to the side of a building or wall.
  • noun Sports The sloping roof that rises from the inner wall to the outer wall surrounding three sides of the court in court tennis, off which the ball is served.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun A shed or sloping roof projecting from a main wall or the side or end of a building, and sometimes constructed over a door or window to protect it from the weather; an appentice. See also cut under appentice.
  • noun Anything resembling a penthouse, or occupying the same relative position with regard to something else.
  • To provide with a penthouse or sloping roof; shelter or protect by means of a shed sloping from the wall, or of something resembling it.
  • noun In artillery, a frame structure sometimes used to protect a sea-coast gun-carriage from continuous severe weather: so made that it can quickly be put in place or removed.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun A shed or roof sloping from the main wall or building, as over a door or window; a lean-to. Also figuratively.
  • adjective Leaning; overhanging.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun An outhouse or other structure (especially one with a sloping roof) attached to the outside wall of a building.
  • noun An apartment or suite on the top floor of a tall building, especially one that is expensive or luxurious.
  • noun Any of the sloping roofs at the side of a real tennis court.

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

  • noun an apartment located on the top floors of a building


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

[Alteration of Middle English pentis, pentace, a shed attached to a wall of a building, from Anglo-Norman pentiz, penthouses, from Old French apentiz, penthouse, from apent, past participle of apendre, to belong, depend, from Medieval Latin appendere, from Latin, to hang, suspend; see append.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Anglo-Norman pentiz ("pentice"), from apendiz ("appentice"), ultimately from a suffixed form of Latin appendō ("I append").



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  • In castle architecture, a covered passage, built of stout timber and covered with raw hides, which protected soldiers or workmen when constructing a sap or mine within the range of the enemy, or those building a causeway across a ditch, or hacking with picks and axes at the footing or lower face of a wall.

    August 26, 2008