Illustrated Architecture Dictionary ...................... Illustrated FURNITURE Glossary
(KWAH tri foil)
A four-lobed circle or arch formed by cusping
"Foil" is the French word for "leaf." The number of foils involved is indicated by a prefix, e.g. trefoil, quatrefoil, sexfoil, multifoil
Used in windows and arches
Found in Gothic Revival, Tudor Revival styles
Quatrefoils are not the same as shamrocks, though they do have four leaves; the leaves of a quatrefoil are more circular and they appear without the stem of a trefoil, except for very rarely.
Architects placed this symbol on churches to signify that the gospel, the harbinger of peace and immortality, was preached there. The four leaves may also represent the four Evangelists who wrote the gospels.
Found in Gothic style furniture.
Examples from Buffalo:
- Illustration above: 4 quatrefoils - St. Louis RC Church
- The Mansion on Delaware Avenue
- Stephen M. Clement House /Red Cross
- Asbury Delaware Avenue Methodist Church
- 29 Irving Pl.
- Miller House
- St. Paul's Cathedral
- 60 Argyle
- Table - Fillmore House Museum