The Quadrangle

Lanterns and fleches

In architecture:
— a lantern is a small, often decorative structure which crowns a dome, turret, or roof and which has openings to admit light or for ventilation.
— a fleche is a small slender spire placed on the roof ridge of a building, usually built of a wooden framework covered with lead or occasionally copper and often acting as a ventilator.

The Quadrangle has a number of these decorating its roofs.

Information is largely from "Stained Glass and Stone" by Bertha McKenzie, "University of Sydney Architecure" by Trevor Howells, the Heritage and Conservation Register maintained by the University and the University of Sydney Grounds Conservation Plan 2002.

Photos are courtesy of the University Secretariat unless otherwise indicated. Click on images for enlargement.


The East range (built between 1854 and 1862) has a small lantern near where its rooftop joins that of the South range.

The small lantern above the South range
The small lantern above the South range


MacLaurin Hall (the former Fisher Library built between 1902 and 1909) has a steeply ribbed copper/muntz roof topped by an elaborate louvred fleche constructed of timber and clad with lead.

The fleche
The top of the fleche
The side of MacLaurin Hall from Manning Road


The former Fisher bookstack (built in 1909) next to MacLaurin Hall has a small fleche on its roof.

Detail of the small fleche
The former Fisher bookstack and a Wilkinson extension


The North-west and North ranges extend from the Western Tower around to the Great Hall and were designed by Leslie Wilkinson in the 1920s. The roof is slate with a lantern where the rooftops of the North and North-west ranges meet.

View of the lantern from Science Road
The North-west range
The lantern top


The roof of the War Memorial arch (built between 1956 and 1958) over Science Road is slate with a central copper clad lantern.

The War Memorial lantern
Detail of the top of the lantern
The lantern on the War Memorial arch with city views beyond