Belt course

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A highly decorative terra-cotta belt course between the brick and stone wall materials.

A belt course, also called a stringcourse or bandcorse, is a continuous row or layer of stones, tile, brick, shingles, etc. in a wall and are often used to separate floors of a house. The Romanesque style of architecture is notable for the use of belt courses, particularly those adorned with intricate carvings and designs.

A belt course is usually a decorative element and does not have a strictly functional purpose. The use of belt courses in residential architecture is most often seen in formal structures on the east coast of the United States, specifically the southeast. Similar to a belt course is an entablature which runs along the top of a row columns instead of along a wall, and is associated with the same Romanesque style of architecture.