frieze - A decorative horizontal band usually placed along the upper end of a wall. In ancient Greek art architecture, the part of the entablature between the architrave and the cornice. Also, any sculptured or ornamental band in a building, or on furniture, pottery, etc. Parts of a processional frieze that once decorated the Parthenon are in museums in London, Paris, and Athens. (pr. freez)
Mesopotamian, Nimrud, Ashurnasirpal II at War, c. 875 BCE, limestone relief, height 39 inches. Such relief sculptures lined the halls and throne room of the king's palace. Many depicted historical scenes of the king dominating enemies and wild beasts. The panels are arranged in friezes — an innovation of Assyrian sculptors and architects. In the battle scene above, the Assyrian king Ashurnasirpal attacks a fortified city whose walls are defended by archers. A winged deity above the king both protects him and blesses the event. The Assyrians clearly have the advantage. See history painting and Mesopotamian art.
Northwestern Iran, Ziwiye (possibly), Jar with frieze of bulls, 8th-7th century BCE, glazed ceramic, height 17.1 inches (43.5 cm), Metropolitan Museum of Art, NY.
Friezes as they figure into a diagram of the Doric order and a diagram of the Ionic order.
France, Limoges, after a c. 1555 etching by Bernard Salomon, 1578, Oval Plate, enamel on copper, 0.390 x 0.515 m, Louvre. The rim of this plate is decorated with a frieze of monsters and animals, with an escutcheon bearing the date 1578 at the top. See monochrome and vessel.
Louis H. Sullivan (American, 1856-1924), Pair of elevator grilles, frieze, and overgrille, c. 1893, cast and wrought iron, copper-plated wrought iron, 118 x 67 inches overall, Minneapolis Institute of Arts. The frieze is the larger horizontal copper element. This was made for the Chicago Stock Exchange Building. See Prairie style.
Also see abacus, acropolis, capital, classical orders, column, Corinthian, cornice, Doric, echinus, entablature, frieze, Greek art, Ionic, lateral, metope, post and lintel, Roman art, shaft, trabeation, and triglyph.