The rectangular slab which constitutes the uppermost element of a column capital. It is nearly always carved from the same block as the rest of the capital and is wider than the epistyle blocks that it carries. In the Doric order the undecorated abacus provides the transition between the convex echinus below and the epistyle above. In the Ionic order it is worked comparatively thinner than in the Doric and is often enriched with mouldings, though it likewise serves as a transitional element between the lower portion of the capital (volute cushion) and the epistyle.

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