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Adhesive, Ceramic
Used for bonding tile to a surface.
A decorative corner piece used in floor installations.  Often used in conjunction with a fascia to create a “rug” border effect.  Some angolos may be used together to create a small rosone.
1)  Material used as a base over which a finished tile is to be installed - i.e. plywood, Back-board, etc..  (See also Sub-Strate)
2)  Material used to hold mosaic in a sheet form.
Balanced Cuts
Tiles cut to the same size on opposite walls where the perimeter of an area which will not take full tiles. Also the same sized cuts on each side of a miter.

1) One or more rows of tile installed above the floor. (See Cove Base)   

2) Refers to the structural portion of a ceramic product and to the material or mixture from which it is made, as in “Coloured Base”.  (See also Body)
A rounded top trim piece typically used in a floor application to serve as a baseboard.  (See also REL)
Beating Block
A wooden block used to embed tiles in a flat plane. Method is called "beating in".
Blend, or Blending
The mixing of tiles from different boxes before installation.
Term refers to structural portion of a ceramic product and to the material or mixture from which it is made.
Brick Pattern
Tile is set in a pattern similar to a brick wall.  Also known as a running bond or staggererd joint.
A sandstone of characteristic brown or reddish-brown colour that is due to a prominent amount of iron oxide, as interstitial material.
A trim tile with a rounded top edge used as the last tile in a wall installation that doesn’t extend to the ceiling, or up to the cabinet line, or to turn an outside edge.  (see also REL)
A roughened finish for concrete, stone or ceramic tile.
The spreading of a bond coat to the back of the ceramic tile immediately before tile is placed.  Also called back-buttering, most commonly used in floor tile installations.
See bullnose.
Ceramic Tiles
Milled clays, or mixture of clay and other ceramic material, formed into a tablet and fired at a very high temperature.  Can be left natural or glazed.
Chair Rail
A cap piece with a distinctive architectural shape.  Used to cap a wainscot or as a decorative element.
Colour Variation Guide
The colour of all tile varies some degree from piece to piece, from each production run to run. At least several pieces from the same production run should be reviewed whenever possible to determine acceptable colour variations. Any questions or concerns about your tile selection should be clarified prior to installing. Colour shade variation is rated as outlined below.

V1 = Uniform Appearance
Differences among pieces from the same production run are minimal.

V2 = Slight Variation
Clearly distinguishable differences in texture and/or pattern within similar colors.

V3 = Moderate Variation
While the colors present on a single piece of tile will be indicitive of the colors to be expected on the other tiles, the amount of colors on each piece may vary significantly. For example, "that little bit of color" on one piece may be the primary color on the next piece.

V4 = Random Variation
Random color differences from tile to tile, so that one tile may have totally different colors from that on other tiles. Thus the final installation will be unique.
Coloured Base (Body) Tile
A porcelain tile whose body is coloured the same colour as its surface.
Conventional Installation
Method of installing ceramic tile with Portland cement mortar.
Counter Rail
V- or L-shaped tile for finishing the exposed edges of countertops.
Cove Base
A base trim piece with one edge that curves to form a concave junction between the bottom wall course and the floor or to form a rounded inside corner.
A break, split, fracture, fissure, separation, cleavage or elongated narrow opening, however caused, visible without magnification to the human eye and extending from the surface into the tile, that must extend through the surface.
The cracking which occurs in fired glazes due to critical tensile stresses.
Cut stone
Stone fabricated to specific dimensions.
Decorative Tile
Tile with designs, pictures, or relief patterns  Decorative tiles are generally used as accents in a field of solid colour.
Diagonal Set
Tile installed  at a 45° angle to the wall or floor.
A crystalline deposit, typically soluble salts, carried by moisture, which has sometimes been found to come from brick, tile, concrete blocks, cement, mortar, concrete, and similar materials.
A decoration in relief or excised on the tile surface.
Epoxy Adhesive
A two part adhesive system employing epoxy resin and epoxy hardener used for bonding ceramic tile to backing.
Epoxy Grout
A two part grout system consisting of epoxy resin and epoxy hardener. Formulated to have impervious qualities, stain and chemical resistance, used to fill joints between tiles.
A decorative piece used in floor installations.  Often used in conjunction with an angolo to create a “rug” border effect.
Feature Strip
A narrow strip of tile with contrasting colour, texture or design. (See also Listello)
Field Tile
The main tile in a tile design.
A trade expression used in the fabrication of marble to indicate the filling of natural voids with cements, shellac or synthetic resins and similar materials.
Fire, Bisque
The process of kiln firing ceramic wear prior to glazing.
Fire, Decorating
The process of firing ceramic or metallic decorations on the surface of glazed ceramic ware.
Relatively incombustible.
A method of aligning mortar with the float strips or screeds using a straightedge. Also called dragging, pulling, rodding or off.
Floor Tile
Any type of tile designated for use on floors.  It can generally be used for walls or countertops also.
A break in rock produced by mechanical failure. Fractures include faults and joints.
Frost Proof Tile
Product manufactured for use where freezing and thawing conditions occur.
Frost Resistance
The ability of certain tiles to withstand freeze/thaw conditions with minimal effect.  Frost resistance of ceramic tile is dependent on the tile’s water absorption levels.  Frost resistance does not guarantee ‘frost proof’.
Gauged or Gauging
A grinding process to make all pieces of material to be used together the same thickness.
Glass Mosaic Tiles
Made of glass usually in sizes not over 2 inches square and 1/4" thick, mounted on either sheets of paper or plastic.  Sheets are usually 12x12 inches.
A Ceramic coating matured to the glossy state on a formed ceramic product. Also refers to the material or mixture from which coating is made:   BRIGHT GLAZE - A high gross coating with or without colour;  MATTE GLAZE - A low gloss glaze with or without colour;  OPAQUE GLAZE - A nontransparent coating with or without colour.
Glazed Tile
A fused impervious facial finish composed of ceramic materials fused to the body of the tile.
Glazed Vitrified Tile
Tiles produced with only one high temperature firing, generally producing harder glazes and a denser body than wall tiles, having a moisture absorption of below 3 percent.
Material used to fill the joints between tiles.
The process of filling tile joints with grout.
Heavy Duty Tile
Tile suitable for areas where heavy pedestrian traffic is prevalent. Can be specified to meet higher test values as determined by job requirements.
Honed Finish
Honed is a super fine smooth finish, though not as fine as a polished finish. 
Impervious Tile
Has water absorption of 0.5% or less.
Insert or Inserto
A decorative tile that co-ordinates with a field tile and is the same size.  For example, if a field tile is 4” x 4”, an insert that co-ordinates is also a 4”x4” tile, only it is decorative.
The area between tiles which is then filled with grout.
Latex-Portland Cement Grout
Combines portland cement grout with a special latex additive to make a higher-performance, less permeable grout than regular portland cement grout.
Latex-Portland Cement Mortar
A mixture of portland cement, sand and special latex additives, used for bonding tile to back-up material. It provides better bonding than normal portland cement mortar.
Caused when two edges of adjacent tile, when installed, are slightly higher or lower than the adjoining material.
Listello (or Listel)
An Italian word for a border tile used to add interest.
Lugged Tile
A tile produced with tabs on the edges for maintaining even spacing.  These are usually wall tiles.  (See Self-Spacing Tile)
Medium Duty Tile
Suitable for entryways in multiple dwellings and lobbies.
To cut on an angle to meet on an edge or corner (similar to picture frame moldings or ceiling cove moldings).
Modular multiple-cut (pattern-cut)
This refers to standard patterns used throughout the stone industry. These patterns are usually based on multiples of a given height. Stone that is multiple cut or pattern cut is pre-cut to allow typically for 1/4 -1/2 inch (6 or 13 mm) joints or beds.
Decorative stone deviating from a plane surface by projections, curved profiles, recesses or any combination thereof.
Monocottura Tile
Tiles produced with only one firing, generally producing a harder glaze and denser body with moisture absorption of greater than 3%.
A plastic mixture of cement, lime, sand, and water used to bond masonry units.
Mosaic Tile
Small pieces of tile fixed into sheets.  Mosaic tile can be made from ceramic, porcelain, marble, slate, glass or metal, in plain or with an abrasive mixture throughout.  For ease of installation, mosaic tile is often sold in 12”x12” sheets.
Mounted Tile
Tile assembled into units or sheets, either back mounted or face mounted, and bonded by suitable material to facilitate handling. Back mounted has perforated paper, fiber mesh, resin or other suitable material attached to the back and/or edges so that a portion of the back of each tile is exposed to the bond coat. Face mounted has paper, or film, applied to the face of the tile, by water soluble adhesive so it is easily removed prior to grouting of the joints.
A slang term for mortar.
Natural cleft
This generally pertains to stones which are formed in layers in the ground. When such stones are cleaved or separated along a natural seam the remaining surface is referred to as a natural cleft surface.
Natural Stone Tile
Natural Stones (Granite, Marble, Limestone, Quartzite, Onyx and Slate) which is cut into tiles ranging from 12" x12" to 16” x 24” or less, usually 3/8" to 3/4" thick. Available in various finishes, including polished, honed and split faced.
Nominal Sizes
Approximate facial size or thickness of tile for general reference expressed in inches or fractions of an inch.
Non-Slip Tile
Tile with greater non-slip characteristics due to abrasive admixture, abrasive particles, grooves or patterns in surface or because of natural non-skid surface characteristics.
Nonvitreous Tile
Has water absorption of more than 7%.
Outer Corner
A trim piece with two connecting edges bullnosed.
 A thin tile of any length usually between ½” and 2” in width generally used as an decorative accent piece.
Imperfections in the surface of a ceramic body or glaze, resembling pin pricks.
Polished Finish
The finest and smoothest finish available in porcelain or stone tiles characterized by a high luster (gloss) and strong reflection of incident light, generally only possible on hard, dense materials.
Porcelain Tile
A ceramic tile, generally made by the dust-pressed method, of a composition that produces a dense, impervious, fine-grained tile with smooth and sharply formed face.    Porcelain tiles can be glazed or unglazed due to their low porosity.  Unglazed porcelain tiles are extremely durable tiles that are often used commercially.  All are frost resistant, having a water absorption of less than 0.5%.
The location of an operation where a natural deposit of stone is removed from the ground.
Quarry Tile
Unglazed tile that is usually six square inches or more in surface area and 1/2" to 3/4" thick. Made by the extrusion process from natural clay or shale.
Quarter Round or Bead
A narrow, convexly curved piece designed to create continuity where 90 degree angles occur.
A course of any thickness that is continued across the entire face. All range courses need not be of the same thickness.
RE (Round Edge)
A rounded edge of a square tile used as the last tile as in a wall installation that doesn’t extend to the ceiling, or up to the cabinet line, or to turn an outside edge.  (see also battiscopa, bullnose)
Rectified Tile
Rectified tile is first fired in a larger format and then cut to size.  This is why it can be calibrated to exact specifications.  Rectified tile can be installed with joints as small as 1/16”. 
A trim unit used to shorten the radius of a bullnose or a cove to another radius or to a square.
REL (Round Edge Long)
A rounded long edge used as the last tile in a wall installation that doesn’t extend to the ceiling, or up to the cabinet line, or to turn an outside edge.  (see also battiscopa, bullnose)
A tile with two adjoining rounded edges (one top, one side) used to finish off the corner piece in a wall installation that doesn’t reach from an end wall  and extend to the ceiling, or up to the cabinet line, or to turn an outside edge.
A square or circle design used as a decorative piece in a floor installation.  Rosones are often made of mosaics of stone or glass, sometimes in intricate water-jet patterns.
Running Bond
Tile is set in a staggered pattern similar to a brick wall.  Also kown as a brick pattern.
A matte-texture surface finish with no gloss, accomplished by exposing the surface to a steady flow of sand under pressure.
Sawed edge
A clean cut edge generally achieved by cutting with a diamond blade, gangsaw or wire saw.
Sculptured Tile
Tile with a decorative design of high and low areas molded into the finished face.
Self-Spacing Tile
Tile with lugs, spacers or protuberances on the sides which automatically space the tile for grout joints.
Semivitreous Tile
Has water absorption of more than 3%, but not more than 7%.  (See also Monocottura)
Shade Variation Guide
See Colour Variation Guide
A flat stone used under windows, doors, and other masonry openings.
A lengthwise cut of a large quarry block of stone produced by sawing or splitting in the first milling or quarrying operation. A slab has two parallel surfaces.
Slip-Resistant Tile
Tile having greater slip-resistance characteristics due to an abrasive admixture, abrasive particles in the surface, or grooves or patterns in the surface.
Cross, T-shaped and Y-shaped, they are used in installation to separate tile on walls and floors to produce a grout joint.  Manufactured in various thicknesses from 1/16" to 1/2".
Sometimes synonymous with rock, but more properly applied to individual blocks, masses or fragments taken from their original formation or considered for commercial use.
Straight Joint
The style of tile installation which features all joints in alignment.
Straight Set
Tile set square to the wall.
Structural Defects
Cracks or laminations in the tile body which detract from the aesthetic appearances and/or structural soundness of the installation.
The underlayment for the ceramic tile installation.
Subway Tile
A smaller rectangular wall tile in sizes such as 3” x 6”, 4” x 8”, etc. 
Terra Cotta
Hard-baked clayware, including tile of variable colour averaging a reddish red-yellow hue.
A surface of chips or pieces of, stone, usually marble, mixed with cement, and ground to a flat surface, exposing the chips, which take a high polish.
Thin Marble
A fabricated marble unit of 2 inches (50 mm) or less in thickness.
Thin Stone/Thin Veneer
A cladding under 2 inches (50mm) thick.
The bonding of tile with suitable materials applied approximately 1/8" thick.
A flat strip projecting above the floor between the jambs of the door; a threshold; a strip of stone or tile placed where two floor types meet – i.e. carpet-tile, or hardwood-tile.
Tile (Ceramic)
A ceramic surfacing unit, usually relatively thin in relation to facial area, made from clay or a mixture of clay and other ceramic material. Has glazed or unglazed face and is fired above red heat in the course of manufacture to a temperature sufficiently high to produce specific physical properties and characteristics.
The light-emitting quality of certain marble varieties containing a crystal structure capable of' transmitting light.
Trim Pieces
Finishing pieces used to cover exposed tile bisque and come in various shapes such as bases, bullnose, caps, corners, mouldings, angles, step nosings etc. necessary to achieve an installation of the desired sanitary and/or architectural design.
Unglazed Tile
A hard, dense tile of uniform composition throughout, deriving colour and texture from the materials of which the body is made.
Vein Cut
Cutting quarried marble or stone perpendicular to the natural bedding plane.
Coloured markings in limestone, marble, alabaster, etc.
A non-loadbearing facing of stone attached to a backing for the purpose of ornamentation, protection or insulation. Veneer shall support no vertical load other than its own weight and possibly the vertical dead load of veneer above.
Vitreous Tile
Has water absorption of more than 0.5%, but not more than 3%.
The area of a tiled wall that is installed from the floor to the chair rail height, or slightly higher, with a border or cap finishing the installation.
Wall Tile
Tile intended for use on walls.
Water Proofing (or Waterproof Membranes)
One or more coatings of a compound that is used to control or restrict the movement of water. 
An expression used in the marble finishing trade to indicate the filling of natural voids with colour-blended materials.
The removal of material or impairment of surface finishing through friction or impact use.
Natural alteration by either chemical or mechanical processes due to the action of constituents of the atmosphere, surface waters, soil and other ground waters, or to temperature changes; the inclined top surface of a stone such as a coping, cornice, or windowsill.