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plan of the Treasury of the Athenians
Delphi, Greece


n. pl. cel·lae (sĕl′ē)
1. The inner room or sanctuary of an ancient Greek or Roman temple, in which the statue of the god was situated.
2. In Byzantine architecture, the area of a centrally planned church in which the liturgy is performed. In both senses also called naos.

[Latin; see kel- in Indo-European roots.]


n, pl -lae (-liː)
(Architecture) the inner room of a classical temple, esp the room housing the statue of a deity. Also called: naos
[C17: from Latin: room, shrine; see cell1]


(ˈsɛl ə)

n., pl. cel•lae (ˈsɛl i)
1. the principal enclosed chamber of a classical temple, containing the statue of the deity.
2. the entire central structure of a classical temple. Also called naos.
[1670–80; < Latin: storeroom, shrine, akin to cēlāre to hide; see conceal]