"Abacus is a Latin term applied to an apparatus used by the Chinese for facilitating arithmetical operations, consisting of a number of parallel cords or wires, upon which balls or beads are strung, the uppermost wire being appropriated to units, the next to tens, &c.-In classic architecture it denotes the tablet forming the upper member of a column, and supporting the entablature. In Gothic architecture the upper member of a column from which the arch springs."—(Charles Leonard-Stuart, 1911)

Abacus

"Abacus is a Latin term applied to an apparatus used by the Chinese for facilitating arithmetical operations,…

An abacus is denoted primarily a square tablet of any description, and was hence employed in the following significations: 1. A table, or side-board, chiefly used for the display of gold and silver cups, and other kinds of caluable and ornamental utensils. The use of abaci was first introduced at Rome from Asia Minor after the victories of Cn. Manlius Vulso, B.C. 187, and their introduction was regarded as one of the marks of the growing luxury of the age; 2. A draught-board or chess-board; 3. A board used by mathematicians for drawing diagrams, and by arithmeticians for the purposes of calculation; 4. In architecture, the flat square stone which constituted the highest member of a column, being placed immediately under te architrave.

Abacus

An abacus is denoted primarily a square tablet of any description, and was hence employed in the following…

An instrument for performing arithmetical calculations by means of sliding balls or counters.

Abacus

An instrument for performing arithmetical calculations by means of sliding balls or counters.

"The upper plate of a column, beneath the architrave." — Williams, 1889

Abacus

"The upper plate of a column, beneath the architrave." — Williams, 1889

Two Chinese men use the abacus to calculate for their business. "The abacus was one of the earliest aids to calculation." -Hill, 1921

Chinese Abacus

Two Chinese men use the abacus to calculate for their business. "The abacus was one of the earliest…

A device used for counting.

Roman Abacus

A device used for counting.

The byzantine capital is found in the St. Sophia in Turkey. This design is called a Trapeziform, a byzantine design that has a cylindrical shaft continued to the square abacus.

Byzantine Capital

The byzantine capital is found in the St. Sophia in Turkey. This design is called a Trapeziform, a byzantine…

The Doric capital is an Italian Renaissance design consisting of the abacus, which is square and the echinos, which is circular.

Doric Capital

The Doric capital is an Italian Renaissance design consisting of the abacus, which is square and the…

The Greek Corinthian capital is found in a monument in Lysikrates, Athens. It is a design of spiral curves that rise from the rows of leaves and unite in pairs. The center of each sides of the abacus is decorated with palmettes or rosettes.

Greek Corinthian Capital

The Greek Corinthian capital is found in a monument in Lysikrates, Athens. It is a design of spiral…

The late Gothic capital has an abacus that is octagonal with projected leaves. This capital has an appearance of an inverted bell.

Late Gothic Capital

The late Gothic capital has an abacus that is octagonal with projected leaves. This capital has an appearance…

The late Gothic capital has an abacus that is octagonal with projected leaves. This capital has an appearance of an inverted bell.

Late Gothic Capital

The late Gothic capital has an abacus that is octagonal with projected leaves. This capital has an appearance…

The Roman Corinthian capital is found in the palaces of the emperors in Rome. It is a design of spiral curves that rise from the rows of leaves and unite in pairs. The center of each sides of the abacus is decorated with palmettes or rosettes.

Roman Corinthian Capital

The Roman Corinthian capital is found in the palaces of the emperors in Rome. It is a design of spiral…

This chalk board also offers abacus-like beads at the top for keeping track of tallies.

Chalk Board

This chalk board also offers abacus-like beads at the top for keeping track of tallies.

"Corinthian Order. From the Monument of Lysicrates, at Athens." —D'Anvers, 1895

Corinthian order

"Corinthian Order. From the Monument of Lysicrates, at Athens." —D'Anvers, 1895

"Ionic order. From the Temple of Athene (Minerva) at Priene." —D'Anvers, 1895

Ionic order

"Ionic order. From the Temple of Athene (Minerva) at Priene." —D'Anvers, 1895

The Greek Doric pilaster capital is found in the ancient Greek temple of Erechtheum in Athens. It has an egg-and-dart design that runs under the abacus. Directly beneath that is decorated with leaves and rosettes.

Greek Doric Pilaster Capital

The Greek Doric pilaster capital is found in the ancient Greek temple of Erechtheum in Athens. It has…

Special rods used for multiplication, division, and extracting square roots.

Napier's Rods

Special rods used for multiplication, division, and extracting square roots.