What does apse mean?

apse meaning in General Dictionary

A projecting part of a building esp of a church having when you look at the plan a polygonal or semicircular termination and most frequently projecting from the east end during the early churches the Eastern apse was occupied by seats for the bishop and clergy

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  • a domed or vaulted recess or projection on a building especially the east-end of a church; typically offers the altar
  • A projecting part of a building, esp. of a church, having in the master plan a polygonal or semicircular termination, and, frequently, projecting from east end. In early churches the Eastern apse was occupied by chairs for the bishop and clergy.
  • The bishop's chair or throne, in old churches.
  • A reliquary, or instance where relics of saints had been held.

apse meaning in Etymology Dictionary

"semicircular expansion at the conclusion of a church," 1846, from Latin apsis "an arch, a vault," from Greek hapsis (Ionic apsis) "loop, arch," initially "a fastening, felloe of a wheel," from haptein "fasten together," which will be of unidentified source. The original good sense in Greek seems to have been the joining of this arcs to form a circle, particularly in making a wheel. The architectural term is earlier in the day attested in English in the Latin kind (1706).


apse meaning in General Dictionary

(letter.) A projecting section of a building, esp. of a church, having in the plan a polygonal or semicircular termination, and, usually, projecting through the east-end. At the beginning of churches the Eastern apse had been occupied by seating when it comes to bishop and clergy.

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  • (letter.) The bishop's seat or throne, in ancient churches.
  • (letter.) A reliquary, or situation when the relics of saints were held.

Sentence Examples with the word apse

The half dome of the central apse has a colossal halflength figure of Christ, with a seated Virgin and Child below; the other apses have full-length colossal figures of St Peter and St Paul.

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