Definition of gable in English:



  • 1The triangular upper part of a wall at the end of a ridged roof.

    ‘a house with mock-Tudor gables’
    • ‘The landscape which preoccupies me happens to be in its nature fairly geometric, like the triangular gable of a roof, the crossed bars of a gate or the circular shape of an oil drum head on.’
    • ‘The roof is an inverted gable, a reference to all the gabled houses in the neighborhood.’
    • ‘A slight pagoda-like lift to the gables and unusual terracotta roof ornaments lend a hint of the exotic to the large shingled houses.’
    • ‘Profuse with cobbled streets, the steeply pitched roofs, prominent cross gables with the structures lavishly covered with ornamental half-timbering, this part of town gave her an archaic feeling.’
    • ‘They set up a small building with wooden gables on its roof.’
    • ‘Exterior features of the house are a steeply pitched roof, large gables and architectural details such as the ornamental dripstones above the mullion windows.’
    • ‘From outside, it seems to be unnecessarily picturesque to give the mass the planners had required to balance that of the bed factory, a brick gable fronting a pitched roof covered in industrial corrugated cladding.’
    • ‘The house, with its steeply pitched red-tiled roof, precipitous gables and tall tapering chimneys, is L-shaped with a well-head in the angle, its conical top resembling a Welsh wizard's hat.’
    • ‘Rather than facing in one direction, the gables of the main house meet to form a 90-degree angle dictated by the T-shaped floor plan.’
    • ‘The Deadwood house has a typical asymmetrical composition with a steeply pitched hipped roof and a front-facing gable.’
    • ‘A simple, small-scale pavilion, raised above grassy terrain and roofed with a simple gable with generous overhangs, is built of plywood panels with glass louvers set into a lightweight steel frame.’
    • ‘At one point, they measured the angle of the roof gables at Machu Picchu and advised the artist to make them steeper.’
    • ‘Note the white walls, terracotta roof and the gables of the building.’
    • ‘James had designed and built the house with an extended gable in the roof.’
    • ‘Historians think they had roof gables facing the street.’
    • ‘Those living in the Alpine or forest regions have traditionally lived in wooden houses with shingled or tiled roofs and carved gables.’
    • ‘As it stood there, lifting its proud roofs and gables to the sky, it might have been its own funeral monument.’
    • ‘I also found myself strangely unable to go to bed while building a model house with a roof of valleys and gables.’
    • ‘The prevailing style of the roughly 3,800 neighboring houses features large gables and verandas, with porticos, pediments, and glossy interiors.’
    • ‘At its height, the storm lifted gables and roofs from buildings, flung rafters and entire advertising kiosks through the air, tore trees from the ground, and drove human beings before it like living torches.’
    1. 1.1 A wall topped with a gable.
      • ‘It was a lovely evening, we watched hundreds of masonry bees excavating the soft sandstone of a gable end, chortled at a dollop of doggerel on the subject of dog dirt and strode off down a dead-end lane.’
      • ‘But he had the perseverance to try to perfect the skills of the game and this he did hitting a ball off the gable end of his Tinnahinch home and playing hurling in the yard between the family home and that of his uncle's house.’
      • ‘A building was also damaged near Castlecroddick when the gable end of a large garage collapsed during the gales.’
      • ‘They didn't realise there was any problem with putting it on the gable end and her husband had only finished it the day before the planning officer called.’
      • ‘Barmaid Kathryn, 22, said: ‘They only came to render the wall and repair the gable end.’’
      • ‘But in Byrom Street, Blackburn town centre, near to the old St Wilfrid's school building, the gable end of a derelict church was blown down.’
      • ‘They have all these fancy windows which are pointing out towards a blank lane while the building's side, which is nothing more than a blank gable end, points at one of the finest views in Europe.’
      • ‘Daubing a slogan on a wall is far cheaper than covering a gable end, and quicker.’
      • ‘The mural on the gable end of the recently painted community centre is, ‘always a pleasant surprise,’ said the adjudicators.’
      • ‘But the task proved impossible because the gable end of the building is used as an anchor point for a cable owned by the electricity company.’
      • ‘A fireball then burst from the gable end of the second property and damaged a third.’
      • ‘Part of the gable end of the headquarters of York & County Press in Walmgate, York, has been removed to allow a new four-tonne automatic inserter to be moved into place.’
      • ‘Designer Tony Cooper turned a wall at the gable end into a built-in unit that meets all the requirements.’
      • ‘Part of Selby town centre was cordoned off when the gable end of a shop was struck by lightning, leaving a chimney stack poised precariously over a busy shopping street.’
      • ‘She had told the court the repeated football playing by neighbourhood children and thudding of a ball on the gable end wall of their home in nearby Primrose Grove, had driven her and her husband to the end of their tether.’
      • ‘It is a real shame even to have lost the Victorian structure, but some of the frontage and the gable end are even older.’
      • ‘Three hours after industrial action was confirmed, blue watch was called to the village of Thorner, where a car carrying five young people had careered off the road, smashed through a garden wall and into the gable end of a house.’
      • ‘The gable end of a newly-built block of flats came tumbling down in Topping Street, off Walmersley Road, Bury, and landed on a Mercedes car, smashing its windows.’
      • ‘Worthy of note too was the altar arrangements beneath the gable end of what was once the Parish Church of Monasterevin.’
      • ‘Initially I shall think small, accepting private commissions on the basis of work exhibited on the gable end of the shop.’
    2. 1.2 A gable-shaped canopy over a window or door.
      • ‘I shivered as the rain began to soak me through; I quickly stepped back under the protection of the small gable over the door.’


Middle English: via Old French from Old Norse gafl, of Germanic origin; related to Dutch gaffel and German Gabel ‘fork’ (the point of the gable originally being the fork of two crossed timbers supporting the end of the roof-tree).