arches made up of stones with a simple double chamfer profile
Well, looking at the only pic from Lagrasse which I can find on the web which *might* be what this author is talking about:
I have to say that I can see no “double keystones” present at all –indeed, the transverse arches here seem to have *no* keystones at all; the stones of the arch just come together at the center. I would not call those “double keystones” –rather, there *is* no keystone present at all (much less two of them –structurally, an arch can only have one “key” stone).
Furthermore, as we saw in our lengthy discussion of this vexing question, the term “double keystone” *seems* to apply to keystones which are made more prominent by “doubling” the height (and, perhaps, the width) of them, relative to the other stones of the arch.
So, to call these keystone-less arches at Lagrasse “double keystones” (just because there are two stones which meet together at the apex of the arch, where a real, single keystone should be) is not only incorrect on its face, but potentially confusing (esp. if someone [say, a hapless tourist] has any idea at all what a “double keystone” might look like when she reads the term on an English Heritage site.
The only thing which I can see which might be considered “doubled” in those Lagrasse arches is the *profile* [or “plan” if you will] of the stones of the arches, which consist of two “parts” or “levels” –an inner (lower) one which has a simple chamfer to the corners of a rectangular block; this chamfer is “echoed” in the outer (upper) part of the profile of the stones and, thus, might be said to be “doubled.”
However, I’ve never seen this kind of profile described as “doubled” (unfortunately, I can’t recall what term or words might be used to describe this sort of rib profile).
So, I think I’ll just make one up.
How about, “arches made up of stones with a double chamfer profile”?
The whole of Hilary’s phrase, “il rappelle par son appareil sommaire et ses archivoltes à double clavage, les chevets des églises transpyrénéennes de la même époque,” would be rendered as something like;
“with its rather haphazard [i.e., not true ashlar] stone work and its arches made up of stones with simple, double chamfered profiles, it [the building at Lagrasse] recalls the choirs/apses typical of the churches of the region beyond the Pyrenees [in northern Spain] of the same period.”
[Btw, those Lagrasse arches are certainly *not* “Romanesque” (in any sense of that troublesome construct) –though they may well be 12th c., I could even see them as considerably later, in part because of the boldness of their span; remember that complexity in such things as rib/arch profiles is not *necessarily* an accurate indicator of date, esp. in “provincial” architecture of this sort.
Now, I use the term “profile” because that is the term used *consistently* in the art historical literature I am thoroughly familiar with.
*Technically* –lexicographically– yes, it is the “archivolt” of the arch (i.e., the inner surface of the stones of the arch) which has a “double profile.”
But, Websters (and even the venerable OED) aside, anglophile art historians who *specialize* in 12th and 13th c. architecture and sculpture, *consistently* use the term “archivolt” to specifically refer to the *stones* of an arch –especially the carved stones of the arch of a portal.
To make my point, here are the results of a google on “archivolt” (images only): http://tinyurl.com/3qy3gbf
You see, the majority of the images are of parts of sculpted (whether with figures or just with decorative designs) portals.
*That* is what “archivolt” refers to in the field.
Yes, Professor Alison Stones (who owns the very nice U. Pittsburgh site) defines “archivolt” [note the singular] as “Bands or mouldings (moldings, Am.) [note the plural] surrounding an arched opening,” and her accompanying illustration points to a *single* stone –or, perhaps, to the decoration on a single stone.
One of my favorite reference works remains Sir Bannister Fletcher’s A History of Architecture on the Comparative Method (4th ed., 1905 downloadable here: http://www.archive.org/details/historyofarchite00flet ), with its hundreds of quite wonderful drawings (very useful for translators seeking English terminology, btw).
Sir Bannister, much to my surprise, defines “Archivolt” as “The *mouldings* on the *face* of an arch resting on the impost” [emphasis mine], and he offers this illustration of what he means by “face of an arch” from a Romanesque portal:
I.e., he doesn’t mean the “moulding” on the *inside* of the arch, but rather that on the outer “face” of it --as does Professor Stones.
Useful as his work still is, some of his terminology reflects its date and the “state of the question” in architectural history.
Note added at 7 days (2011-09-15 18:52:15 GMT)
is looking more and more to me like 17th c. work (the "Congregation de Saint Maur out of St. Germain de Pres in Paris reformed Benedictine houses all over France at that time, building nice new dormitories for the monks --and huge administrative buildings-- as they went).
those windows with the round-top "lights" above them are certainly of that date, and the arches (with their "archivolts") could well be that late (certainly I'd prefer them there rather than in c. 12, though they *might* be 14th-15th c., esp. in that backward region).
Windows, walls and arches look all of a piece.
So, either this is *not* the building your source is talking about, or your source is *really* out in Left Field (a U.S. baseball term, meaning Beyond the Pale).