Making sense of "plinth" calls for first defining this rather funny sounding noun. If you check into the word's etymology
, or origins, you'll discover that it came from the Greek plinthos
, which meant tile or brick.
Now, you could really go down the plinthos path by imagining that the word referred to any sort of structure designed with those two building materials. Plinth, however, is much more specific in its form and function.
Picture a piece of sculpture or a statue sitting on a base. The solid platform beneath the art piece is a plinth. The plinth could be a plain block or slab, or it might be or inscribed or otherwise decorated. Historically, a plinth could be quite large — the Taj Mahal stands on a marble plinth that supports the main tomb as it reaches 200 feet to the sky — or pretty little — early Egyptian pottery known as alabastrons often appeared on small plinths perfect for displaying the alabaster beauties.
So, if you wanted to be creative (and descriptive) with the word plinth in a sentence, you might say something like, "Annie was overjoyed when she won the bid on eBay for the brand-new puggle figurine perched atop a shiny pink plinth."