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 (ground′sĭl′) also ground·sel (ground′səl, groun′-)
The horizontal timber nearest the ground in the frame of a building.
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.


(Building) another name for ground plate
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014



also groundsel

the lowermost sill of a framed structure, esp. one lying close to the ground.
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.
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Through half a lifetime of Catholic liturgies, during school years, in my professional work as an educator, for 14 years in a monastery, she lived at my inmost center, the groundsill of my spirituality."
The Japanese also use it in shoji screens and as structural lumber and groundsill. The natural properties of yellow cedar make it a perfect choice for putting on top of foundations because of the wood's high durability and resistance to insects," said Stevens.
Less frequently, the presence of corbels or groundsills, used to distribute the loads avoiding the concentration of shear stresses in the delivery points of the timber beams on the masonry walls, were also observed.