span·​drel | \ ˈspan-drəl How to pronounce spandrel (audio) \
variants: or less commonly spandril

Definition of spandrel

1 : the sometimes ornamented space between the right or left exterior curve of an arch and an enclosing right angle
2 : the triangular space beneath the string of a stair

Illustration of spandrel

Illustration of spandrel

S spandrel 1

Examples of spandrel in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The span that went down was the 1905 Milwaukee Light, Heat & Traction (MLH&T) spandrel-arch bridge over the Root River, near 98th Street and Layton Avenue. Milwaukee, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "112 years of rail history ends with demolition of interurban rail bridge in Greenfield," 3 Jan. 2018 As the new Le Meridien hotel, developers restored the building's original spandrels and replaced the clear glass. Diane Cowen, Houston Chronicle, "Houston Mod honors preservation of mid-century buildings, arts," 21 Dec. 2017

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

First Known Use of spandrel

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for spandrel

Middle English spandrell, from Anglo-French spaunder, from espandre to spread out — more at spawn

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

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Cite this Entry

“Spandrel.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 7 Apr. 2020.

More from Merriam-Webster on spandrel

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with spandrel Encyclopedia article about spandrel

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