Definition of spandrel in English:



  • 1The almost triangular space between one side of the outer curve of an arch, a wall, and the ceiling or framework.

    • ‘Relief panels containing scenes from the Childhood of Christ filled the triangular spandrels between the gables dominating the screen's facade.’
    • ‘The building service core is a solid, while transparency is achieved through variations in a curtain wall composed of vision, spandrel, and fritted glass.’
    • ‘About 1,100 glass panels, including windows and spandrels, were blown out.’
    • ‘On the rear wall is a kind of private chapel, a wall niche framed by pilasters and faced with spandrels with inlaid vegetal ornament, which shelters an altar.’
    • ‘The new tower appears in Bayard's photograph of 1851, yet Ruskin's spandrel is just visible - still unscathed.’
    1. 1.1 The space between the shoulders of adjoining arches and the ceiling or moulding above.


Late Middle English: perhaps from Anglo-Norman French spaund(e)re, or from espaundre ‘expand’.