noun \ˈnāv\

Definition of NAVE

:  the hub of a wheel

Origin of NAVE

Middle English, from Old English nafu; akin to Old English nafela navel
First Known Use: before 12th century



Definition of NAVE

:  the main part of the interior of a church; especially :  the long narrow central hall in a cruciform church that rises higher than the aisles flanking it to form a clerestory

Origin of NAVE

Medieval Latin navis, from Latin, ship; akin to Old English nōwend sailor, Greek naus ship, Sanskrit nau
First Known Use: 1673

Other Architecture Terms

buttress, casita, cornice, fanlight, garret, lintel, parapet, pilaster, plinth


noun    (Concise Encyclopedia)

Nave, Salisbury Cathedral, England, begun 1220—A.F. Kersting

Main part of a Christian church, extending from the entrance (the narthex) to the transept or chancel (area around the altar). In a basilican church (see basilica), which has side aisles, nave refers only to the central section. Medieval naves were generally divided into many bays, producing the effect of great length. During the Renaissance, the nave format became more flexible, and the nave was divided into fewer compartments, giving a feeling of spaciousness and balanced proportion among the height, length, and width, as in St. Paul's Cathedral.


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