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An archivolt is an ornamental band which is frequently found on the interior or exterior of a curved arch. Its purpose is to add visual interest and architectural detail to the arch. Archivolts are commonly used in a variety of architectural designs and can range from simple to complex, depending on the aesthetic being sought. In some cases, the archivolt may be part of the decorative element of a structure, while in others it may be an integral part of the structural design. It is an important feature of Romanesque and Gothic architecture.

Equivalent words of Archivolt in other languages include: Bögenleiste (German), bandeau (French), arcoleba (Spanish), intradosso (Italian), arcovolto (Portuguese), ježek (Czech), waal (Dutch), agrement (Romanian), poniz (Slovenian), mišmaš (Se

Harris Awan


Archivolt is a noun derived from the Italian word arco volta, meaning arching vault. It is an architectural term denoting an ornamental molding or band following the curve of an arch, usually at its springing, and frequently carved with an elaborate scroll-like design. Synonyms for archivolt include arch band, arch crown, and arcature. Antonyms would include plain, simple, and unornamented. Cognates might include intrados, extrados, and corbel. Variants of archivolt are archivolts, archivolte, archivolts, archivoltes, and archivult.

Architecture, etymology, morphology, molding, scroll-design.

George Adrian Postea


Archivolt is a term of Italian origin related to the field of architecture. It is derived from the combination of two words: 'archi' meaning ‘arches’, and the suffix 'volta', which translates to ‘vault’. Historians have established that the archivolt came into popularity in the 15th century, especially in the region of Italy, where it was extensively used in the context of ornamental decorations. From a morphological point of view, the term refers to an ornamental molding that arcs over the frame of a doorway or window. In terms of pragmatic functions, an archivolt is most often used to support the construction of an arch or vault, as well as to decorate and reinforce walls.

Etymology, Morphology, Historical Evolution, Architecture, Pragmatics.

Henry Fontaine


Archivolt is a type of architectural ornamentation that is primarily used as a decorative element for a building façade. It is typically composed of a continuous band, or molding, made of stone or wood carved in curves or a series of S-shapes. The archivolt may run around the entire circumference of an archway or window, or alternatively, it may be used to adorn the entablature, frieze or other areas of a building's façade. Its purpose is to provide a decorative trim that enhances the overall look of the building and creates a sense of uniformity.

Architectural ornamentation, decorative trim, building façade, S-shaped molding.

Lauren Moore

CITATION : "Lauren Moore. 'Archivolt.' Design+Encyclopedia. (Accessed on March 27, 2023)"

Archivolt Definition
Archivolt on Design+Encyclopedia

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