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Perhaps from Latin cornix (crow), influenced by Ancient Greek κορωνίς (korōnís, crown).


cornice (plural cornices)

Cornice, Wainwright Bldg, St. Louis (Louis Sullivan)
  1. (architecture) A horizontal architectural element of a building, projecting forward from the main walls, originally used as a means of directing rainwater away from the building's walls.
  2. A decorative element applied at the topmost part of the wall of a room, as with a crown molding.
    • 1963, Margery Allingham, chapter 1, in The China Governess[1]:
      The half-dozen pieces […] were painted white and carved with festoons of flowers, birds and cupids. […]  The bed was the most extravagant piece.  Its graceful cane halftester rose high towards the cornice and was so festooned in carved white wood that the effect was positively insecure, as if the great couch were trimmed with icing sugar.
  3. A decorative element at the topmost portion of certain pieces of furniture, as with a highboy.
  4. (geography) An overhanging edge of snow on a ridge or the crest of a mountain and along the sides of gullies.
    • 1999, Harish Kapadia, “Ascents in the Panch Chuli Group”, in Across Peaks & Passes in Kumaun Himalaya, New Delhi: Indus Publishing Company, →ISBN, page 136:
      Looking to the east we could see Api and the mountains of west Nepal, shapely snow peaks in the distance, while in the immediate foreground, much lower but still dramatic, were the peaks of Panch Chuli IV and V (III was hidden by the lip of a huge cornice), Telkot and Nagling, all of them unclimbed, all steep and challenging.


See also[edit]


The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout#Translations.


cornice (third-person singular simple present cornices, present participle cornicing, simple past and past participle corniced)

  1. (transitive) To furnish or decorate with a cornice.





cornice f (plural cornici)

  1. frame
  2. cornice
  3. ledge
  4. background, setting

Derived terms[edit]





  1. ablative singular of cornix