See caption
Cupola, Belfast City Hall
Wikimedia Commons

A cupola is a small dome on top of a roof, a larger dome, or some other high structure;[1] it may be either circular or polygonal in shape.[2]

The term is a borrowing from Italian, derived from the Latin cūpula, meaning little cask or small vault, and is also used for the revolving dome of an observatory.[3]



Clarke, Michael. “Cupola.” The Concise Oxford Dictionary of Art Terms, Online, Oxford University Press, 2010,
OED. “Cupola, n.” Oxford English Dictionary, Online, Oxford  University Press, 2023,
Quiney, Anthony. “Cupola.” The Oxford Companion to Architecture, edited by Patrick Goode, Online, Oxford University Press, 2009,