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Welcome to the Ontario Architecture Website

Click here for the schools page

This is a non-profit educational website developed to help you appreciate architecture both in Ontario and the rest of the world. The website is in two parts:

Building Styles

is an explanation of some of the architectural styles that you will find in Ontario Canada. Find these on the left of the Glossary page or on the Building Styles page. The Building Styles page takes longer to load because there are a great many pictures.

To describe the buildings it is necessary to use architectural terms. For those not familiar with these terms, there are links in both the text and the image. Move your cursor over the picture and you will can find links to pages describing these architectural terms. Don't forget about the Back button.

This website was made to help people of all ages appreciate the architecture in their own town or city. Architecture is the most accessible of all the art forms, and once you start looking at buildings, you will never stop.

By looking at the different styles of architecture and understanding the terms and where they came from, you may find that buildings that you have known for years become more interesting.

The architectural styles described are all from Ontario Canada, but the "vocabulary" of the buildings is often hundreds or thousands of years old. For further reading, there is a bibliography on the page "About this Site".


Building Terms

is an explanation of some architectural terms. These are found on the right side of the Glossary page and on the Building Terms pages. Because there are so many pictures, the Building Terms pages take much more time to load than the Glossary, but if you are looking for a particular architectural feature and can't remember the name, you may find it in these pages.

The Building Terms section was set up for many reasons. Almost all building styles in Canada originated somewhere else. Some Terms pages will give you a historical perspective. For example,

Ionic columns originated in Greece before 500 B.C. These columns can be found in Classical Revival and Neo-Classical architecture in Canada, the United States and Europe. Pages on Greek Architecture , the Ionic order, Columns, Architraves, Cornices, Volutes etc. will illustrate some of the origins of these building terms.

Drip molds and Label stops, along with Finials, Scalloping, Bargeboarding, Cantilevering, Molding and other detailing are indicative of Gothic or medieval building styles. These can be found in Gothic Revival, Neo-Gothic and Period Revival styles in Canada, the United States, and Europe.

Many other terms are included simply for interest and inspiration.



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Finial Hood or Drip Mold Gingerbread, bargeboard Scalloping Sash Window Architrave Transom Columns Scalloping Hood or Drip Mold Sash Window Chimney