Transom

Transom is the term given to a transverse beam or bar in a frame, or to the crosspiece separating a door or the like from a window or fanlight above

A transom and transom light over double doors. In architecture, a transom is the term given to a transverse beam or bar in a frame, or to the crosspiece separating a door or the like from a window or fanlight above it. Transom is also the customary U.S. word used for a transom light, the window over this crosspiece. In Britain, the transom above a door is usually referred to as a "fanlight" irrespective of shape, and occasionally as an "overlight" or "hopper", or by the French word "vasistas". The term "fanlight" derives from the fan-like shape of early transoms, which became a traditional part of the Georgian style. "Vasistas" sounds similar to the German phrase "was ist das?" ("what is that?"); hence folk etymology ascribes its origin to a visiting German's reaction to seeing a transom during a trip to France.

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