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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.]
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.


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]
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014


(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]
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.