One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1A round or eye-like opening or design.
- ‘Either way, feeding a signal from a microphone placed in the oculus gives a real audio picture of the size of the space.’
- ‘Each of the upper study areas has an oculus in the floor revealing its counterpart below.’
- ‘Vents in the facade, the cupolas, and the oculi inside allowed air to circulate throughout the building.’
- ‘What could have swayed Capponi away from the plan for an oculus and toward the tall, narrow shape employed by Marcillat?’
- 1.1 A circular window.
- ‘A large oculus brings a cylinder of light down into the main library, bathing the interior in a softly luminous glow.’
- ‘The oculus window will complement two large stained glass windows that have been installed in the third-floor ceiling.’
- ‘The oculus windows depicted in each of their two cells illuminate the figures with an otherworldly silvery light.’
- ‘The sun streams in through the open oculus, tracing a circular disk across the walls and floor, creating a walk-in solar observatory.’
- ‘The light entering through the oculus at the top floods the space with hypnotic patterns of light and shadow.’
- 1.2 The central boss of a volute.
- ‘Formed by the intersection of toroidal geometries, the roof is composed of two shells that interlock at the centre of which is a great glass oculus.’
- 1.3 An opening at the apex of a dome.
- ‘The major interior space, the Potomac rotunda, balloons under a domed ceiling with an oculus, reaching a height of 120 feet.’
- ‘Supported by slender steel columns that splay arboreally at their tops, the concrete canopy is perforated by a series of different-sized oculi.’
- ‘At the top of the columns a concrete-on-steel deck platform forms the oculus of the interior dome.’
- ‘A round stained glass window will be installed above the oculus (opening at the top of the dome).’
- ‘At the centre of the dome is an oculus, a circular hole, which is the only source of light.’
Mid 19th century: from Latin, literally ‘eye’.
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