MissPres Architectural Word of the Week: Undercut Gallery

Time for another MissPres Architectural Word of the Week! If you want to check out any previous word you can do that here. As always our example photographs come from the MDAH Historic Resources Database. This week’s word might sound fancy but it really is not.

This week’s word is brought to you by the letter U as defined by The Buildings of Biloxi: An Architectural Survey

Undercut Gallery: (ən-dər-ˈkət ˈga-lə-rē) An open space cut into the main volume of a house.

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As you can see from our examples the Undercut Gallery transcends style and time period. While “Gallery” sounds like a fancy word to me, McAlester’s Field Guide tells us it’s really just the Anglicized version of the French word for porch. Porches are constructed in either of two ways. A roof can be added independent of the main roof creating a porch, or by removing one or more principle walls from under the principle roof of the house, creating our Undercut Gallery.

Do you have a favorite building in Mississippi that has a great Undercut Gallery? If so please share! With all this nice weather we are being blessed with get outside and spend some time on an Undercut Gallery, or a porch, or verandah, or piazza, or portale or loggia, or what ever you like to call it and keep your eyes out for this and all the previous MissPres Architectural Word of the Week. You just never know where they will pop up next!

Categories: Books, Columbia, Historic Preservation, Jackson, Laurel, Starkville, Summit

5 replies

  1. How exciting to hear my little Taylor cottage has an undercut gallery–not just a porch. I feel better about living here already!


  2. Beauvoir has one of my favorite undercut galleries, undercut on three sides!


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