SAH Archipedia uses terms from the Getty Art and Architecture Thesaurus (AAT) to categorize and classify metadata for the entries in the database. For more information on the Getty AAT, click here.

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packing plants
Facility where livestock are slaughtered, processed, and packed as meat products.

pagodas (buildings)
Multistoried shrine-like towers of stone, brick, or wood, usually associated with a Buddhist temple complex and often crowned by hemispherical or bulbous stupa. A pagoda may comprise open stories of balconies or enclosed floors, generally of diminishing size from bottom to top, often capped with corbeled cornices and pent roofs; this form is seen particularly in Japan. The pagoda derives from the stupa of ancient India, which was a dome-shaped commemorative monument, usually erected over the remains or relics of a holy man or king.

paint shops
Accessory industrial buildings where vehicles or machines are painted.

palaces
Official residences, frequently large and impressively appointed, of sovereigns or other high dignitaries; for other large stately dwellings but not official residences, use "mansions."

palazzi
Large and imposing Italian urban dwellings or palatial mansions.

palisades (outworks)
Barriers composed of long stakes, usually with pointed tops, driven into the earth close together, sometimes connected by horizontal beams.

Palladian windows
Windows of large size, characteristic of Renaissance and later classicizing styles, divided by columns or piers resembling pilasters into three lights, the middle one of which is usually wider than the others and is sometimes arched.

palm houses
Greenhouses for growing palms.

panel doors
Doors having stiles, rails, and sometimes muntins that form one or more frames around thinner, recessed or carved panels.

paneling
Wall coverings consisting of panels of wood or other material joined in a continuous surface.

panopticons
Buildings, as prisons, hospitals, or libraries, so arranged that all parts of the interior are visible from a single point.

pantheons
Temples dedicated to all the gods.

pantries
Rooms or closets in which food, groceries, and other provisions, or silverware, dishes, and other items are kept.

paper mills
Facilities that are primarily engaged in the manufacture of paper or paper products, usually from wood, recycled paper, or other fiber pulp. Originally water-driven, modern paper mills are typically powered electrically.

parade grounds
Designates extensive, flat, open spaces used for military exercises, marching, or riding.

paradise gardens
Gardens often provided with shade, flowing water, pavilions, and elaborate plantings for private enjoyment; common in Islamic countries.

parapets
Low walls, projecting from the edge of platforms, terraces, or roofs, or surmounting the cornices of a building; also, walls forming the uppermost part of defensive walls or ramparts.

parish churches (buildings)
A parish church is the principal church of a parish, serving the needs of religious administrative districts called "parishes."

parish houses
Buildings in connection with a church used for secular activities.

parish schools
Schools serving or supported by a parish, particularly an ecclesiastical parish and usually providing religious education as well as conventional education.

park districts
Urban or regional administrative areas, within the boundaries of which administrators have responsibility for the maintenance and development of all parks and recreation areas. Urban or regional administrative areas, within the boundaries of which administrators have responsibility for the maintenance and development of all parks and recreation areas.

parking garages
Stacked parking structures comprising a building or part of a building having several stories and designed or used specifically for parking automobiles.

parking lots
Plots of ground used for the parking of vehicles.

parks (grounds)
Enclosed, preserved, and extensive woodland and pasture attached to substantial residences; especially in England and British colonies.

parks (public recreation areas)
Permanently dedicated recreation areas, often open to the public and generally characterized by their natural, historic, or landscape features; often administered by governmental agencies.

parkways
Limited access highways located within a park or parklike setting and intended for only passenger cars and noncommercial traffic.

parlors
Rooms intended for conversation and the reception of guests in residences, hotels, monasteries, or churches, particularly common in the 19th century. The contemporary living room is similar to the parlor in that often another room is provided for daily family relaxation.

parochial schools (buildings)
Buildings that house elementary or secondary schools operated, controlled, or supported by a church or other religious body.

parochial schools (institutions)
Elementary or secondary schools operated, controlled, or supported by a church or other religious body. While the term literally refers to a school's relationship to an ecclesiastical parish, in common usage, control of the school may instead belong to another division of a church other than parish.

parsonages
The residences provided for clergymen, usually parsons.

parterres
Formally arranged flower beds, planters, or boxed sections of gardens, often set with raised borders and in different shapes.

partitions (interior walls)
Interior walls separating one portion of a space from another; sometimes permanent inside walls that divide buildings into various rooms, sometimes designed to move aside and open up a space. For entities other than walls that divide interior spaces, often incorporating bookshelves, cabinets, or drawers, use "room dividers."

passages (circulation spaces)
Relatively narrow spaces designed to provide access; usually interior spaces.

passenger elevators
Designates elevators primarily used to convey people.

passenger terminals
Transportation buildings with facilities for handling passengers.

passes (landforms)
Refers to narrow routes through or gaps in mountain ranges allowing passage across.

passive solar heating
Solar heating systems that collect and transfer heat by the natural laws of convection, conduction, and radiation with little or no mechanical assistance; for solar heating systems utilizing mechanical devices to transfer heat, use "active solar heating."

pastures
Land covered with grass or similar plants and used for grazing livestock.

patent offices
Government offices or office buildings for examining claims to patents and for granting patents.

paths
Narrow walks or ways, typically not constructed like a road, and intended to be traveled by foot.

patios (recreation areas)
Paved roofless areas of relatively small or medium size associated with architecture, such as a roofless recreation area adjoining a house or a roofless inner courtyard open to the sky of Spanish or Spanish-style buildings.

pavilions (building divisions)
Refers to both for the parts of buildings that project outward from the rest, especially common as corner, central, or terminal features in French architecture, and for the detached or semidetached units into which a building (as a hospital) is sometimes divided.

pavilions (garden structures)
Light, sometimes ornamental, structures in gardens, parks, or places of recreation that are used for entertainment or shelter.

pavilions (tents)
Large, stately, or ornamental tents or tent-like coverings, usually rising to a central point rather than a ridge.

peaks (landforms)
The pointed tops of mountains, ridges, or large prominent hills; may also be used, by extension, to refer to prominent pointed mountains.

pedestrian facilities
Elements of the cultural landscape designed for the convenience and safety of pedestrians.

pedestrian malls
Open public areas, walks, or plazas, often lined with trees, shrubs, or shops, reserved for use by pedestrians.

pedestrian streets
Urban streets lined with storefronts and closed off to most automobile traffic.

pedimented dormers
Gabled dormers in which the gable is treated as a pediment.

pediments
Triangular gable walls above the horizontal cornice of a classically treated building; also, triangular or roughly triangular elements, sometimes curved, or broken at the center, surmounting porticoes or openings. Common also on furniture, including as bonnet tops.

pendentive domes
Domes with inner surfaces continuous with the surfaces of their pendentives.

peninsulas
Landforms surrounded by water on three sides, not completey independent from the mainland.

penitentiaries (buildings)
Generally refers to buildings housing prisons for those convicted of major crimes.

penitentiaries (institutions)
Generally refers to prisons for those convicted of major crimes. The term derives from the type of prison authorized by the British 1779 Penitentiary Act, enforcing strict discipline and hard labor intended to reform as well as punish. Given that, in modern systems, most prisons include reformatory or correctional functions, the original distinction is lost and the term "penitentiary" often refers to any "prison" in common usage. In the United States, penitentiaries are state or federal prisons that are reserved for the detention of convicted felons.

Pennsylvania bank barns
Barns built into hillsides and generally characterized by stone end walls and a ramp up to a second floor containing crops and machinery which overhangs, on the barnyard side, a first floor kept for livestock.

penthouses (building divisions)
Structures enclosing useful space that constitute the top level of multistory buildings and have walls set back significantly from the walls of the story below; includes quite small structures, surrounded by large areas of flat roof, such as shelters for elevator machinery.

penthouses (roofs)
Sloping roofs placed either against buildings so as to create smaller substructures (such as a sheds or outhouses) or over doorways or windows to protect from the weather.

performing arts buildings
Buildings that are used for public arts performances.

performing arts centers
Buildings or groups of buildings containing auditoriums, multipurpose spaces, and auxiliary facilities suitable for the presentation of various performing arts, such as concerts, operas, and plays.

performing arts structures
Built works used for arts and public performance.

pergolas
Garden structures with open wood-framed roofs, often latticed, supported by regularly spaced posts or columns; often covered by climbing plants such as vines or roses, shading a walk or passageway. Distinguished from "arbors," which are less extensive in extent and structure.

period rooms
Rooms in museums in which furnishings are displayed within a historically accurate architectural setting.

periodic markets
Markets at which buyers and sellers converge according to a regular schedule; merchants set up temporary stands or tables, usually occupying the same location in the market space and offering the same goods for sale on each occasion.

peristyles (Roman courtyards)
Refers to the court toward the back of a Roman house, commonly with a small garden surrounded by a colonnade.

pesthouses
Shelters or hospitals for those infected with a pestilential or contagious disease.

petroglyphs
Large scale low-relief carved, incised, or painted images on living rock, often created by ancient peoples.

physical education buildings
Buildings in which individuals can learn and develop skills in sports, exercises, and hygiene.

piazzas (squares)
In Italian cities and towns, open public spaces usually surrounded by buildings.

picket fences
Fences formed of a series of vertical posts, stakes, or rods, sometimes sharpened at the upper end, which are joined together by horizontal rails.

picnic areas
Areas in parks or other municipally maintained spaces designated for open-air food preparation and dining. They are commonly furnished with tables, seats, and waste receptacles.

pictographs
Highly simplified or conventionalized pictures that stand for the thing pictured; may be used as writing signs corresponding to individual words or phonetic elements in a language. Use also for certain prehistoric pictures and linear designs whose meanings are uncertain.

picture windows
Outsize windows placed to frame or as if to frame a desirable exterior view; it may be placed between two narrower windows, typically in a living room or other such room in a home.

piers (marine landings)
Structures extending from the shoreline out over the sea or tidal river, to protect or partially enclose a harbor and form a landing place for vessels, or to serve as a recreational or entertainment place. A pier may also be a projecting landing stage or jetty on the bank of a river or lake. For structures built along or parallel to the shoreline serving as landing, loading, or unloading places for vessels, use "wharves" or "quays."

piers (supporting elements)
Refers to relatively isolated, solid supports of masonry or another material designed to sustain vertical pressure, including a square or rectangular pillar or pilaster, the solid masonry between doors and windows, the pillars from which an arch springs, or the pillars or posts of a gate or door. A pier may also be a solid structure of masonry or ironwork supporting a telescope or other large instrument. It is sometimes distinguished from columns or posts by being more massive in size and often square or rectangular in cross section. For cylindrical uprights and for all uprights in steel and concrete frames, the term "columns (architectural elements)" is more often appropriate; for wooden uprights square in cross-section, "posts" may be more appropriate.

pig houses
Sheds or small barns constructed to house pigs. For large commercial facilities, use "hog houses."

pigsties
Enclosures for pigs that include a covered pen and yard.

pilasters
Shallow piers or rectangular columns projecting only slightly from a wall and, in classical architecture, conforming with one of the orders.(PDARC) Common also on furniture.

pilgrimage centers
Communities that grew up around or have economies centered on a site of religious pilgrimage and activities associated with the site.

pilot plants
Designates experimental facilities, usually small scaled-down versions of a planned plant, built to test manufacturing processes and generally gain experience prior to operating the final facility.

pit dwellings
Houses, common during the prehistoric periods of many cultures, whose floors are dug out deeply below the adjacent ground level. Use "sunken huts" for multipurpose buildings of the first millennium CE, found in England and throughout northern Europe.

pitched roofs
Designates roofs with one or more surfaces that have a pitch greater than 10 degrees from the horizontal.

pits (earthworks)
Cavities in the earth, usually not below ground water level, that are shallow in proportion to their width and generally created for materials extraction or burial.

pits (theater spaces)
Refers to the ground floors of theaters, especially those at the rear; most appropriate in an English and historical rather than a modern American context.

pivoted windows
Windows whose sash rotates about fixed vertical or horizontal pivots, located at or toward the center.

planetaria (buildings)
Buildings housing devices for projecting celestial images onto the interior of a dome for public viewing; may also be used for the projecting mechanisms. For mechanical models of the solar system, use "orreries."

planets
Large natural objects that orbit a star or a stellar remnant. Planets are not radiating energy from internal nuclear fusion reactions, are not a brown dwarfs, and are bigger than an asteroid. Planets are large enough to have become round due to the force of their own gravity, and dominate the neighborhood around their orbit, and are thus distinguished from dwarf planets.

planing mills
Establishments primarily engaged in producing surfaced lumber, by cutting, smoothing, and matching wood.

planned communities
Settlements or urban or suburban environments of any size that are developed according to a single plan, usually on a previously undeveloped site.

planned unit developments
Complexes designed as unified sites that include a mix of building types and uses, common open space, and controlled density increases, rather than lot-by-lot schemes.

plans (maps)
No description is available for this term.

plantation houses
Refers to the primary, and usually largest, residences on plantations.

plantation owners
People or groups of people who own and oversee the high-level operation of plantations, which are agricultural complexes usually worked by resident labor, often reserved for those in tropical or sub-tropical locations. The term often has negative connotations in modern usage, because many plantations relied upon slave labor in the 17th through 19th centuries.

plantations
Generally, agricultural complexes usually worked by resident labor. More specifically, large estates in tropical or subtropical regions that are usually cultivated by resident unskilled or semi-skilled labor under central direction. Meaning and usage overlap with "estates(commercial agricultural holding)," although such estates are typically smaller enterprises than plantations.

planters (containers)
Any of various containers in which plants are grown or placed for decorative purposes.

plateaus (landforms)
Tablelands or flat-topped areas of considerable extent elevated above the surrounding countryside and bounded on at least one side by a vertical face.

platform mounds
Artificial earthen mounds with a flat summit, intended to support a structure or activity. They were particularly prominent in the Pre-Columbian American cultures.

plats (land)
Areas of land generally characterized by being of medium size, often comprising an individual's property, often rectangular or of another regular shape, and defined by precise boundaries. Distinguished from "lots (land)," which are typically smaller, used for a single building, and often found in a town or urban environment rather than in the countryside.

playgrounds
Areas used play and recreation, especially by children, and often containing such equipment as swings, slides, seesaws, etc.

playrooms
Rooms fitted out or reserved for children to play in.

plazas (squares)
Small public squares in towns or landscaped pedestrian spaces adjacent to office buildings or parking areas.

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