Narthex

narthex

1. (Science: botany) A tall umbelliferous plant (ferula communis). See giant fennel, under Fennel.

2. The portico in front of ancient churches; sometimes, the atrium or outer court surrounded by ambulatories; used, generally, for any vestibule, lobby, or outer porch, leading to the nave of a church.

Origin: L, giant fennel, Gr.

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