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1. In Classical architecture, an arrangement of a particular style of column together with the entablature (which it supports) and standardized details, including its base and capital. The Greeks developed the Corinthian order, Doric order, and Ionic order; the Romans added the Composite order and Tuscan order. For each order, the height and spacing of the columns is established in terms of a specified number of diameters of the lower part of the columns; the design of the base and capital is also prescribed. The height of the entablatures is determined by the height of the columns.
2. In masonry, one ring of several around an arch.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Architecture and Construction. Copyright © 2003 by McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.