From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48 [gcide]:
1. (Arch.) (a) A square hall lighted from above, into which rooms open at one or more levels. (b) An open court with a porch or gallery around three or more sides; especially at the entrance of a basilica or other church. The name was extended in the Middle Ages to the open churchyard or cemetery.
From WordNet (r) 3.0 (2006) [wn]:
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