World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article


Article Id: WHEBN0001009272
Reproduction Date:

Title: Cruciform  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Ipswich serial murders, List of new churches by John Douglas, Phanom Rung Historical Park, Church architecture, Buick Riviera
Collection: Church Architecture
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia


For resurrection device/parasite at the Hyperion Cantos see Cruciform (Hyperion Cantos).

Cruciform means having the shape of a cross or Christian cross.


  • Cruciform architectural plan 1
  • Cruciform DNA 2
  • Cruciform joint 3
  • Cruciform manuscript 4
  • Cruciform melody 5
  • Cruciform sword 6
  • Cruciform tail 7
  • Cruciform web design 8
  • Doctor Who: The Cruciform 9
  • See also 10
  • Sources 11

Cruciform architectural plan

Christian churches are commonly described as having a cruciform architecture. In Early Christian, Byzantine and other Eastern Orthodox forms of church architecture this is likely to mean a tetraconch plan, a Greek cross, with arms of equal length or, later, a cross-in-square plan.

In the Western churches, a cruciform architecture usually, though not exclusively, means a church built with the layout developed in Gothic architecture. This layout comprises the following:

  • An east end, containing an altar and often with an elaborate, decorated window, through which light will shine in the early part of the day.
  • A west end, which sometimes contains a baptismal font, being a large decorated bowl, in which water can be firstly, blessed (dedicated to the use and purposes of God) and then used for baptism.
  • North and south transepts, being "arms" of the cross and often containing rooms for gathering, small side chapels, or in many cases other necessities such as an organ and toilets.
  • The crossing, which in later designs often was under a tower or dome.

In churches that are not oriented with the altar at the geographical east end, it is usual to refer to the altar end as "liturgical east" and so forth.

Another example of ancient cruciform architecture[1] can be found in Herod's temple, the second Jewish temple.

Cruciform DNA

librarian Humfrey Wanley holding a cruciform Anglo-Saxon manuscript
Tchaikovsky's "Cross"-motive, associated with the crucifixion, himself, and Tristan, first appearing in mm.1-2 of his Pathétique Symphony[2] About this sound Play  . Tchaikovsky associated the cross-motif with "star-cross'd lovers", such as in Romeo and Juliet.[2]

DNA can undergo transitions to form a cruciform shape, otherwise known as a Holliday junction. This structure is important for the critical biological processes of DNA recombination and repair that occur in the cell.

Cruciform joint

A cruciform joint is a specific joint in which 4 spaces are created by the welding of 3 plates of metal at right angles.

Cruciform manuscript

A cruciform manuscript was a form of Anglo-Saxon / Insular manuscript written with the words in a block shaped like a cross.

Cruciform melody

In music, a melody of four pitches that ascends or descends by step, skips below or above the first pitch, then returns to the first pitch by step. The red lines, one between the outer and one between the inner, in the example to the left demonstrate how this depicts a cross: since the second and third pitches must cross the path of the first and fourth. Often representative of the Christian cross, such melodies are cruciform in their retrogrades or inversions. Johann Sebastian Bach, whose last name may be represented in tones through a musical cryptogram known as the BACH motif that is a cruciform melody, employed the device extensively. The subject of the fugue in c-sharp minor[3] from The Well-Tempered Clavier Book I is cruciform. See also: Cross motif.

Cruciform sword

Swiss longsword, 15th or 16th century

The plain sword used by knights, distinctive due to the flat bar used as a guard. The overall shape of the sword when held point down is that of a cross.

It is believed this shape was encouraged by the church to remind Knights of their religion. It was however very popular due to the protection it offered to the hand and certain attacks that rely on the cross to trap the blade of the enemy. See Sword.

Cruciform tail

Jetstream 31 with cruciform tail

Some airplanes use a cruciform tail design, wherein the horizontal stabilizer is positioned mid-way up the vertical stabilizer, forming a cruciform shape when viewed from the front or rear. Some examples are the F-9 Cougar,the F-10 Skyknight and the Sud Aviation Caravelle.

The cruciform tail gives the benefit of clearing the aerodynamics of the tail away from the wake of the engine, while not requiring the same amount of strengthening of the vertical tail section in comparison with a T-tail design.

Cruciform web design

Cruciform web designs use a cross-shaped web page that expands to fill the width and height of the web browser window. There are a number of different approaches to implementing them.

Doctor Who: The Cruciform

In the episode "The Sound of Drums" of the British science fiction television series Doctor Who, an object or location called "the Cruciform" is mentioned, as having been captured from the Time Lords by the Dalek Emperor. It is presumed to be something of great importance, since the Master considered losing it tantamount to defeat in the Time War, but no specific information other than that name has been given.[4]

See also


  1. ^ Jerome, Murphy-O'Connor (1998). The Holy Land: an Oxford archaeological guide from earliest times to 170. Oxford University Press, USA; 4 edition (June 25, 1998). p. 108.  
  2. ^ a b Jackson, Timothy (1999). Symphony No. 6 (Pathétique), p.51. ISBN 0-521-64676-6.
  3. ^
  4. ^ Scott, Cavan and Wright, Mark. Doctor Who: Who-ology, p. 72 (Random House 2013).
This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.

Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from Project Gutenberg are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.