ga·​ble | \ ˈgā-bəl How to pronounce gable (audio) \

Definition of gable

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : the vertical triangular end of a building from cornice or eaves to ridge
b : the similar end of a gambrel roof
c : the end wall of a building
2 : a triangular part or structure


biographical name
Ga·​ble | \ ˈgā-bəl How to pronounce Gable (audio) \

Definition of Gable (Entry 2 of 2)

(William) Clark 1901–1960 American actor

Illustration of gable

Illustration of gable


1 gable 1a

In the meaning defined above

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Other Words from gable


gabled \ ˈgā-​bəld How to pronounce gabled (audio) \ adjective

Examples of gable in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The exterior features a steep roof with side gables and a minor overhang, and often includes shutters, which serve as protection from the strong New England winds. Lucia Tonelli, ELLE Decor, "What is a Cape Cod-Style House? Reasons to Love the Quintessential Look," 14 June 2019 Photo: Alamy Munich Start at Karlsplatz, not far from the main rail station, and stroll the half-dozen pedestrian-only blocks through a wonderland of pastel houses, stepped gables and windows dripping with geraniums, on down to the Rathaus. William Sertl, WSJ, "Brief, Breezy and Foolproof Itineraries to 6 European Cities," 16 Jan. 2019 In fact, two crosses—the beams and the gables—are superimposed but offset. Shonquis Moreno, Curbed, "‘If you take out the art, the building itself can’t stand’," 6 Aug. 2018 Hence the magnificent gables, the plaster scrolls, escutcheons, vases, masks, garlands, festoons, cartouches, balustrades, and whatnot. Steve King, Condé Nast Traveler, "Why We Keep Going Back to Amsterdam," 24 Dec. 2018 All, however, maintained a few common characteristics: Steep roofs, front-facing gables, small-paned windows, prominent chimneys, and asymmetrical facades. Megan Barber, Curbed, "Updated Tudor near NYC asks $1.8M," 17 Dec. 2018 The majority of their exteriors are brick, but they're accented (often in those triangular gables) with decorative half-timbering: essentially a mock frame of thin boards with stucco or stone filling in the spaces between the boards. Maggie Burch, House Beautiful, "There's A Reason You Don't See Many Tudor-Style Homes These Days," 1 Nov. 2018 The house, which was designed and redesigned, is itself a gentle manifesto, the gable a blow against the aesthetic tyranny of the modernist flat roof; the square windows a blow against the aesthetic tyranny of transparent walls. Jenny Xie, Curbed, "Postmodernism trailblazer Robert Venturi dies at age 93," 20 Sep. 2018 Magazine The penchant for evocative artistry has been a staple of the architects’ catalog ever since—as has the gable, the closest thing H&dM has to a signature trope. Ian Volner, WSJ, "Swiss Architecture Firm Herzog & De Meuron Celebrates 40 Years," 4 Nov. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'gable.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of gable


15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for gable


Middle English, borrowed from Anglo-French, going back to Latin gabulus, gabulum "gibbet" (borrowed from Celtic *gablo- "fork," whence Old Irish gabul "fork, gibbet, groin," Welsh gafl "fork, groin"), perhaps influenced in sense by northern Middle English and Scots gavel "triangular end of a building," borrowed from Old Norse gafl

Note: The word gable, attested only in Anglo-French and the French of Normandy, is unlikely to be a loan from Old Norse, which would have resulted in *gavle. Old Norse gafl appears to correspond to Old High German gibil "gable," Middle Dutch and Middle Low German gevel, and Gothic gibla, though the divergence in vocalism is unexplained.

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Dictionary Entries near gable







gable end

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21 Jun 2019

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The first known use of gable was in the 15th century

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English Language Learners Definition of gable

: a section of a building's outside wall that is shaped like a triangle and that is formed by two sections of the roof sloping down


ga·​ble | \ ˈgā-bəl How to pronounce gable (audio) \

Kids Definition of gable

: the triangular part of an outside wall of a building formed by the sides of a sloping roof

Other Words from gable

gabled \ ˈgā-​bəld \ adjective a gabled house

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More from Merriam-Webster on gable

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with gable

Spanish Central: Translation of gable

Nglish: Translation of gable for Spanish Speakers Encyclopedia article about gable

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