Dentil & Modillions

Our dentil & modillions coving and cornice

The type of cornice characterised by small toothlike projections is known as Dentil cornice. It is another design whose origins lie in the Greek Ionic architectural style and was used to decorate the temples of the period. Although they resemble teeth it is believed that the original intention was to mimic the exposed ends of closely spaced beams. This is also suggested by the absence of a frieze in early examples and consequently the shallower entablature, however this changed during the Roman period.

In the Corinthian architectural order an extended and widely spaced Dentil that looks like a bracket was introduced to cornice. An innovation which evolved and was later embellished by being carved into the shape of a scroll. These widely spaced brackets are known as Modillions and appear to support the projecting mouldings above. Dentils though were not forgotten and often they were often included in a cornice that also incorporated Modillions, we stock a cornice (LPC019) which demonstrates this development perfectly. The use of Modillions and Dentil mouldings received fresh impetus during the Renaissance and beyond. Great architects like Palladio made much use of Modillions and so too did the Victorians during their neo classical revivals.

The enduring popularity of these styles is reflected in our range of Modillions and Dentil coving. We have tried to incorporate as many different designs as possible to give you a great choice in different sizes.