Definition of pendentive in English:

Share this entry


Pronunciation: /pɛnˈdɛntɪv/


A curved triangle of vaulting formed by the intersection of a dome with its supporting arches.
Example sentences
  • Each storey is articulated by a balcony, projecting on a system of stalactite pendentives - this feature appearing for the first time in India and no doubt imported from classical Islamic construction.
  • The spaces are called spandrels - or pendentives, but the more general architectural term is spandrels.
  • His most important commission was for the apse and the pendentives beneath the cupola in; the dome was commissioned from his great rival, the Baroque painter.


Early 18th century: from the French adjective pendentif, -ive, from Latin pendent- 'hanging down', from the verb pendere.

Share this entry

What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.