chapter house

1. Eccles. a building attached to or a hall forming part of a cathedral or monastery, used as a meeting place for the chapter.
2. a building used by a chapter of a society, fraternity, sorority, etc.
[bef. 1150; ME chapitelhus, OE captelhus]

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 chamber or building, often reached through the cloister, in which the chapter, or heads of monastic bodies, assemble to transact business. Chapter houses occur in various forms. In England the chapter houses of the medieval cathedrals were originally rectangular in plan (e.g., Canterbury), but the most common design is a polygon with a central pillar to support a vaulted ceiling. Particularly fine octagonal examples can be seen at Salisbury or Westminster. There are oblong chapter houses at Canterbury and Exeter and a circular one at Worcester. English chapter houses are often provided with a vestibule (e.g., Lincoln and Salisbury). On the continent of Europe, chapter houses are more rare than in England and are almost always rectangular.

      In post-medieval times, occasions for building chapter houses in the proper sense were rare; but, because the form was so characteristic of medieval architecture, 19th-century Gothic revivalists made considerable use of it in secular adaptations—typical examples being the chapter house adjoining the Ashmolean Museum, Oxford, and the library of the House of Commons, Ottawa.

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Universalium. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Chapter House — • A building attached to a monastery or cathedral in which the meetings of the chapter are held Catholic Encyclopedia. Kevin Knight. 2006. Chapter House     Chapter House      …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • Chapter house — Chapter Chap ter, n. [OF. chapitre, F. chapitre, fr. L. capitulum, dim. of caput head, the chief person or thing, the principal division of a writing, chapter. See {Chief}, and cf, {Chapiter}.] 1. A division of a book or treatise; as, Genesis has …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • chapter house — chapter houses 1) N COUNT A chapter house is the building or set of rooms in the grounds of a cathedral where the members of the clergy hold their meetings. 2) N COUNT In a university or college, a chapter house is the place where a fraternity or …   English dictionary

  • chapter house — n. 1. the place where a chapter, as of monks, meets ☆ 2. the house of a fraternity or sorority chapter …   English World dictionary

  • Chapter-house — (engl., spr. tschäppter haus), Kapitelhaus, ein vier oder mehreckiger Anbau an englische Kathedralen, in dem sich das Domkapitel zu seinen Sitzungen zu versammeln pflegte …   Meyers Großes Konversations-Lexikon

  • chapter house — chapter ,house noun count 1. ) AMERICAN a meeting place for students who are members of a FRATERNITY or SORORITY at a university 2. ) a building where the priests who work in a CATHEDRAL have meetings …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

  • Chapter house — This article is about church architecture. For the Navajo administrative meeting place, see Chapter house (Navajo Nation). The Chapterhouse at Lincoln Cathedral. Note the flying buttresses surrounding the building …   Wikipedia

  • chapter house — noun Etymology: Middle English chapitre hous, from chapitre chapter + hous house 1. : a building, room, or suite of rooms where a chapter meets or transacts its business 2. : a meeting place or residence of a local chapter of a college fraternity …   Useful english dictionary

  • chapter house — noun a) A building attached to a cathedral, church, or monastery and used as a meeting place. The cloister, and the chapter house adjoining to the church, are the finest here of any I have seen in England; the latter is octagon, or eight square,… …   Wiktionary

  • chapter house — UK / US noun [countable] Word forms chapter house : singular chapter house plural chapter houses 1) a building where the priests who work in a cathedral have their meetings 2) American a meeting place for students who are members of a fraternity… …   English dictionary

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