Help Wordnik hunt for a million missing words by backing our Kickstarter!


from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. Architecture Plural of atlas2.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. Plural form of atlas.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Figures or half figures of men, used as columns to support an entablature; -- called also telamones. See caryatides.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • In architecture, figures or half figures of men used in place of columns or pilasters, to support an entablature.


From the Ancient Greek Ἄτλαντες (Atlantes), the nominative plural form of Ἄτλας (Atlas); see atlas. (Wiktionary)


  • Here was revealed, beyond a splashing fountain guarded by recumbent lions, up a hillside, densely covered with dark confiners, a baroque grotto with exuberantly rusticated arches and athletic atlantes.

    Michael Henry Adams: Some Great New Books!

  • Quales statuae (quod ait [2100] ille) quae sacris in aedibus columnis imponuntur, velut oneri cedentes videntur, ac si insudarent, quum revera sensu sint carentes, et nihil saxeam adjuvent firmitatem: atlantes videri volunt, quum sint statuae lapideae, umbratiles revera homunciones, fungi, forsan et bardi, nihil a saxo differentes.

    Anatomy of Melancholy

  • You can see this in atlantes and dictionaries until the Eighties, but the situation is almost reverse now. RENAMING THE HAN.

  • Again, figures in the form of men supporting mutules or coronae, we term "telamones" -- the reasons why or wherefore they are so called are not found in any story -- but the Greeks name them [Greek: atlantes].

    The Ten Books on Architecture

  • The walls of the narrow cella were interrupted by heavy piers supporting atlantes, or applied statues under the ceiling.

    A Text-Book of the History of Architecture Seventh Edition, revised


Log in or sign up to get involved in the conversation. It's quick and easy.