a. A horizontal molded projection that crowns or completes a building or wall.
b. The uppermost part of an entablature.
a. A strip of molding that runs along the upper part of a wall just below the ceiling.
b. An ornamental horizontal molding or frame used to conceal rods, picture hooks, or other devices.
3. An overhanging mass of windblown snow on a ridge or the crest of a mountain.
tr.v. cor·niced, cor·nic·ing, cor·nic·es
To supply, decorate, or finish with or as if with a cornice.
[Obsolete French, from Italian, possibly from Latin cornīx, cornīc-, crow, from its resemblance to a crow's beak (influenced by Greek korōnis, curved line, flourish).]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2019 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.