tympanum (plural tympanums)

  1. (architecture) A triangular space between the sides of a pediment.
  2. (architecture) The space within an arch, and above a lintel or a subordinate arch, spanning the opening below the arch.
    • 2005, Alan Hollinghurst, The Line of Beauty, Bloomsbury Publishing, paperback, page 9
      It was a black-and-white picture of a Romanesque doorway, with flanking saints and a lively Last Judgement in the tympanum [...].
  3. The middle ear.
  4. The eardrum.
  5. (anatomy) A hearing organ in frogs, toads and some insects.
  6. (anatomy) In certain birds, the labyrinth at the bottom of the windpipe.
  7. (engineering) A drum-shaped wheel with spirally curved partitions by which water is raised to the axis when the wheel revolves with the lower part of the circumference submerged; used for raising water, as for irrigation.
  • German: Tympanum
  • Italian: timpano
  • Russian: тимпан

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