Ogee

# Ogee

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An ogee is a curve
Curve
In mathematics, a curve is, generally speaking, an object similar to a line but which is not required to be straight...

(often used in molding
Molding (decorative)
Molding or moulding is a strip of material with various profiles used to cover transitions between surfaces or for decoration. It is traditionally made from solid milled wood or plaster but may be made from plastic or reformed wood...

), shaped somewhat like an S, consisting of two arc
Arc (geometry)
In geometry, an arc is a closed segment of a differentiable curve in the two-dimensional plane; for example, a circular arc is a segment of the circumference of a circle...

s that curve in opposite senses, so that the ends are parallel.

The term has uses in architecture
Architecture
Architecture is both the process and product of planning, designing and construction. Architectural works, in the material form of buildings, are often perceived as cultural and political symbols and as works of art...

, mathematics
Mathematics
Mathematics is the study of quantity, space, structure, and change. Mathematicians seek out patterns and formulate new conjectures. Mathematicians resolve the truth or falsity of conjectures by mathematical proofs, which are arguments sufficient to convince other mathematicians of their validity...

, and fluid mechanics
Fluid mechanics
Fluid mechanics is the study of fluids and the forces on them. Fluid mechanics can be divided into fluid statics, the study of fluids at rest; fluid kinematics, the study of fluids in motion; and fluid dynamics, the study of the effect of forces on fluid motion...

, as well as marine construction
Construction
In the fields of architecture and civil engineering, construction is a process that consists of the building or assembling of infrastructure. Far from being a single activity, large scale construction is a feat of human multitasking...

, clock design and plastic surgery
Plastic surgery
Plastic surgery is a medical specialty concerned with the correction or restoration of form and function. Though cosmetic or aesthetic surgery is the best-known kind of plastic surgery, most plastic surgery is not cosmetic: plastic surgery includes many types of reconstructive surgery, hand...

.

## Use in architecture

In architecture, the term is used for a molding with an ogee-shaped profile, consisting (going from low to high) of a concave arc flowing into a convex arc, with vertical ends; if the lower curve is convex and higher one concave, this is known as a Roman ogee, although frequently the terms are used as if they are interchangeable and for a variety of other shapes. Alternative names for such a true Roman ogee molding include cyma reversa and talon.

The cyma reversa form occurs in antiquity. For example, in ancient Persia, the Tomb of Cyrus
Tomb of Cyrus
The Tomb of Cyrus is the burial place of the ancient Cyrus the Great of Persia. The tomb is located in Iran, at the Pasargadae World Heritage Site. Cyrus the Great , or Cyrus II of Persia was a Persian Shahenshah , who founded of the Persian Empire under the Achaemenid dynasty...

featured the cyma reversa. The cyma reversa is also evident in ancient Greek architecture.
The ogee shape is one of the characteristics of the Gothic
Gothic architecture
Gothic architecture is a style of architecture that flourished during the high and late medieval period. It evolved from Romanesque architecture and was succeeded by Renaissance architecture....

style of architecture
Architecture
Architecture is both the process and product of planning, designing and construction. Architectural works, in the material form of buildings, are often perceived as cultural and political symbols and as works of art...

, especially decorative elements in the 14th and 15th century late Gothic styles called Flamboyant
Flamboyant
Flamboyant is the name given to a florid style of late Gothic architecture in vogue in France from the 14th to the early 16th century, a version of which spread to Spain and Portugal during the 15th century; the equivalent stylistic period in English architecture is called the Decorated Style, and...

in France
France
The French Republic , The French Republic , The French Republic , (commonly known as France , is a unitary semi-presidential republic in Western Europe with several overseas territories and islands located on other continents and in the Indian, Pacific, and Atlantic oceans. Metropolitan France...

and Decorated in England
England
England is a country that is part of the United Kingdom. It shares land borders with Scotland to the north and Wales to the west; the Irish Sea is to the north west, the Celtic Sea to the south west, with the North Sea to the east and the English Channel to the south separating it from continental...

. Ogee windows and arches were introduced to European cities from the Middle East
Middle East
The Middle East is a region that encompasses Western Asia and Northern Africa. It is often used as a synonym for Near East, in opposition to Far East...

. The ogee curve is an analogue of a "cyma
Cyma
Cyma may refer to either:* A style of molding* Cyma Zarghami, the president of Nickelodeon and MTV Networks' Kids & Family Group* CYMA – Canadian Youth Mission to Armenia, a Canadian-run humanitarian program...

curve", the difference being that a cyma has horizontal rather than vertical ends.

The ogee and Roman ogee profiles are used in decorative molding
Molding (decorative)
Molding or moulding is a strip of material with various profiles used to cover transitions between surfaces or for decoration. It is traditionally made from solid milled wood or plaster but may be made from plastic or reformed wood...

, often framed between moldings with a square section. As such it is part of the standard classical decorative vocabulary, adopted from architrave and cornice moldings of the Ionic order
Ionic order
The Ionic order forms one of the three orders or organizational systems of classical architecture, the other two canonic orders being the Doric and the Corinthian...

and Corinthian order
Corinthian order
The Corinthian order is one of the three principal classical orders of ancient Greek and Roman architecture. The other two are the Doric and Ionic. When classical architecture was revived during the Renaissance, two more orders were added to the canon, the Tuscan order and the Composite order...

. An ogee is also often used in the "crown molding
Crown molding
Crown molding encapsulates a large family of moldings which are designed to gracefully flare out to a finished top edge. Crown molding is generally used for capping walls, pilasters, and cabinets, and is used extensively in the creation of interior and exterior cornice assemblies and door and...

" frequently found at the top of a piece of case furniture, or for capping a baseboard
Baseboard
In architecture, a baseboard is a board covering the lowest part of an interior wall...

or plinth
Plinth
In architecture, a plinth is the base or platform upon which a column, pedestal, statue, monument or structure rests. Gottfried Semper's The Four Elements of Architecture posited that the plinth, the hearth, the roof, and the wall make up all of architectural theory. The plinth usually rests...

, or where a wall meets the ceiling. An ogee molding may be run in plaster or wood, or cut in stone or brickwork.

## Other uses

Ogee is also a mathematical term, meaning an inflection point
Inflection point
In differential calculus, an inflection point, point of inflection, or inflection is a point on a curve at which the curvature or concavity changes sign. The curve changes from being concave upwards to concave downwards , or vice versa...

; the aesthetic appeal of the ogee curve forms part of the leitmotif
Leitmotif
A leitmotif , sometimes written leit-motif, is a musical term , referring to a recurring theme, associated with a particular person, place, or idea. It is closely related to the musical idea of idée fixe...

of the Booker-prize winning novel The Line of Beauty
The Line of Beauty
The Line of Beauty is a 2004 Booker Prize-winning novel by Alan Hollinghurst.-Plot introduction:Set in Britain in the early to mid-1980s, the story surrounds the post-Oxford life of the young gay protagonist, Nick Guest....

.

In fluid mechanics
Fluid mechanics
Fluid mechanics is the study of fluids and the forces on them. Fluid mechanics can be divided into fluid statics, the study of fluids at rest; fluid kinematics, the study of fluids in motion; and fluid dynamics, the study of the effect of forces on fluid motion...

, the term is used for an ogee-shaped aerodynamic
Aerodynamics
Aerodynamics is a branch of dynamics concerned with studying the motion of air, particularly when it interacts with a moving object. Aerodynamics is a subfield of fluid dynamics and gas dynamics, with much theory shared between them. Aerodynamics is often used synonymously with gas dynamics, with...

profile. For example, a wing may have ogee profile, particularly on supersonic aircraft such as the Concorde
Concorde
Aérospatiale-BAC Concorde was a turbojet-powered supersonic passenger airliner, a supersonic transport . It was a product of an Anglo-French government treaty, combining the manufacturing efforts of Aérospatiale and the British Aircraft Corporation...

. Also, the downstream face of a dam
Dam
A dam is a barrier that impounds water or underground streams. Dams generally serve the primary purpose of retaining water, while other structures such as floodgates or levees are used to manage or prevent water flow into specific land regions. Hydropower and pumped-storage hydroelectricity are...

spillway is usually formed in an ogee curve to minimize water pressure.

An "ogee washer" is a heavy washer with a large bearing surface used in marine timber construction to prevent bolt heads or nuts from sinking into the face of timbers. The term ogee is used due to the ogee shape in radial symmetry around the center. Due to the size and shape, they are generally manufactured as a cast iron product in accordance with ASTM A47 or A48.

An "ogee clock" is a common kind of weight-driven 19th-century pendulum clock
Pendulum clock
A pendulum clock is a clock that uses a pendulum, a swinging weight, as its timekeeping element. The advantage of a pendulum for timekeeping is that it is a resonant device; it swings back and forth in a precise time interval dependent on its length, and resists swinging at other rates...

in a simplified Gothic taste, made in the United States for a mantelpiece or to sit upon a wall bracket. It is rectangular, with ogee-profile molding that frames a central glass door that protects the clock face and the pendulum. The door usually carries a painted scene in the area beneath the face. Ogee clocks are one of the most commonly encountered varieties of American antique clocks.

In aesthetic facial surgery, the term is used to describe the malar or cheekbone prominence transitioning into the mid-cheek hollow. The aim of a mid-face rejuvenation is to restore the ogee curve and enhance the cheekbones. This enhancement is also commonly a part of a routine facelift
Facelift
Facelift is the common name for rhytidectomy, a cosmetic surgery procedure.Facelift may also refer to:* Facelift , the revival of a product through cosmetic means such as changing its appearance...

.