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Spectacles Parts & Glasses Glossary Part #4b!

A Few More Spectacles & Glasses Parts Explained…

At Spectacles Blog we have looked before at various elements of spectacles and glasses anatomy… And it’s a popular subject believe you me.  many, many people look on the internet (albeit probably hazily with broken spectacles) for the names of glasses parts.

We have covered the “bridge” that arches the nose between the lenses and supports most of the weight of most spectacles but what we haven’t described before are the terms for the different types of bridges on a pair of spectacles… So…

Keyhole bridge: Shaped like a keyhole (what else?!) which rests on the top of the sides of the nose. Supposedly this is best for small or flat-topped noses.

Eyeglasses with both saddle bridge & library temples for eyeglasses4women

Eyeglasses with both saddle bridge & library temples for eyeglasses4women

Saddle bridge:

Shaped like a horse saddle which spreads the weight of the spectacles between the sides and the top of the nose and is therefore more useful when glasses are heavy glasses – or if you just want to feel the weight less at any given point!

Adjustable bridge: This has adjustable nose pads which bend and can therefore be moved to get the fit right for maximum comfort

Double bridge: This is where there is simply a second bar/bridge over the top of the supporting bridge – with the second being for style or strength, not for comfort

And then the same applies for temples – the “arms” of your spectacles which go over your ears.and again there are various styles & types of temples which you may hear about when getting new specs…

Skull temples: The most common especially on plastic frames when they are slightly over the ear and slightly bent inwards around your head

Comfort-cable temples: These hook over and behind your ears with a flexible metal semi-circle. These are seen on older glasses a lot more than nowadays with all the plastic frames but you still get them on kids’ spectacles and on children’s and sports glasses where they’re more likely to fly off

Riding bow temples: Similar to comfort-cables but they’re in plastic and are not flexible

Spring-hinged temples: These have springs at the front end in the hinges and the slight squeeze from the spring help keep the glasses in place. (They also often open up wider than other temples and so get broken less in the process of clumsy opening

Library temples: Straight with no bend or shape for the ear so they come off easily which is good in a library (or just sitting reading at home) but not for sport or normal wear.

Paddle temples: Like library temples with straight temples but flattened at the ear end

With thanks to Reading Glasses Shopper for the gist – though I have said most of what they have said before, I did get this extra detail from their site.  I will add pictures as and when I can.


  1. Ann Zawistoski says:

    Ooh, I’ve wanted a good glasses glossary (glassary?). Awesome, thank you!
    (From Ann at Little Four Eyes (dot com) who we’ve written about before)

  2. Mick says:

    This was really useful content, I know some of my visitors have no idea what the different sections are called, this is some informative information, there’s even a few that I had no idea about.

    Take care,

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