mantel

[man-tl]
noun
1.
a construction framing the opening of a fireplace and usually covering part of the chimney breast in a more or less decorative manner.
2.
Also called mantelshelf. a shelf above a fireplace opening.
Also, mantle.
Also called mantelpiece [man-tl-pees] , mantlepiece.


Origin:
1480–90; earlier mantell mantelet; variant of mantle

mantel, mantle.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Collins
World English Dictionary
mantel or (less commonly) mantle (ˈmæntəl)
 
n
1.  a wooden or stone frame around the opening of a fireplace, together with its decorative facing
2.  Also called: mantel shelf a shelf above this frame
 
[C15: from French, variant of mantle]
 
mantle or (less commonly) mantle
 
n
 
[C15: from French, variant of mantle]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

mantel
1489, "short, loose, sleeveless cloak," variant of mantle (q.v.). Sense of "movable shelter for soldiers besieging a fort" is from 1524. Meaning "timber or stone supporting masonry above a fireplace" first recorded 1519, a shortened form of M.E. mantiltre "mantletree" (1482).
Mantelpiece is from 1686.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Encyclopedia Britannica
Encyclopedia

mantel

hood or other similar projection, usually ornamented, that surrounds the opening of a fireplace and directs smoke up to the chimney flue. See chimneypiece.

Learn more about mantel with a free trial on Britannica.com.

Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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Example sentences
Moment later, and everything was under the fog's mantel.
The mantel is a natural spot for owls of all sizes to perch among manzanita branches.
The living room has built-in shelves and a fireplaces with a marble mantel.
Each designer's mantel is already heavy with awards, and the work all five are nominated for is invariably fantastic.
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