General English


  • The portion of the end of a building that extends from the eaves to the peak or ridge of the roof. The gable's shape is determined by the type of building on which it is used: triangular in a building with a simple ridged roof, or semi-octagonal in a building with a gambrel roof.

Real Estate

  • noun the triangular top section of a side wall on a building with a pitched roof that fills the space beneath where the roof slopes meet
  • noun a triangular structure added to a building for decoration, e.g. a canopy over a door or window

Origin & History of “gable”

The notion underlying gable is probably of ‘topping’ or ‘surmounting’, for it has been traced back by some to prehistoric Indo-European *ghebhalā, which also produced Greek kephalḗ ‘head’. Its immediate source was Old Norse gafl, which gave English the form gavel, subsequently remodelled on the basis of Old French gable (itself probably borrowed originally from the Old Norse word).