In an ancient Roman house, an atrium was an open central court that contained the impluvium, a basin where rainwater collected. It originally contained the hearth and functioned as the center of family life. The term later came to be used for the open front courtyard of a Christian basilica, where congregants collected before services. The atrium was revived in the 20th century in the form of glass-covered, greenery-filled multistory spaces sometimes found in shopping centers, office buildings, and large hotels.
Examples of atrium in a Sentence
Recent Examples on the WebIn the meantime, visitors can get a preview of the entrance and retail area, which includes an impressive 36-foot-tall, 166,000 lbs, 3,200-year-old Ramses II statue in the atrium.—Nada El Sawy, Condé Nast Traveler, 21 Nov. 2023 Bridges, now suspended from the center’s ceiling, crisscross the new atrium, where lounges spill like rice-paddy fields down from the upper floors.—Michael Kimmelman, New York Times, 17 Nov. 2023 True to Viking’s sleek and Scandi-style roots, the shiny new vessel comes outfitted with 41 residential-style staterooms, an open-air atrium, two modern restaurants, and an infinity-edge plunge pool flanking Aton’s signature Aquavit terrace.—Michelle Gross, Robb Report, 13 Nov. 2023 To round out the offerings there is a world-class spa with a two-story atrium, private poolside cabanas, and some of the best cuisine in the Keys.—Tracey Minkin, Travel + Leisure, 27 Oct. 2023 Now that has all moved to Pennsylvania Avenue, including a segment of the Berlin Wall displayed in an atrium.—Nick Anderson, Washington Post, 6 Oct. 2023 The atrium essentially connected the rest of the domus, much like a kitchen can open up to a living area and dining room in a modern open-concept space.—Mary Cornetta, Better Homes & Gardens, 10 Nov. 2023 King Charles and Queen Camilla View a Piece of Queen Elizabeth's Royal History Before State Visit to Kenya
Then, inside the atrium of the museum, Charles and Camilla were joined by local schoolkids to view exhibits documenting Kenya’s history and the events leading to the country’s independence.—Simon Perry, Peoplemag, 31 Oct. 2023 The main-deck guest suites have windows measuring nearly 20 feet across, while the winter garden on the stern has fully retracting glass doors, and there’s even a glass staircase and elevator in the main atrium.—Michael Verdon, Robb Report, 9 Oct. 2023 See More
These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'atrium.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.
: a chamber of the heart receiving blood from the veins and forcing it into a ventricle that in lung-breathing vertebrates (as frogs and human beings) is one of two chambers of which the right receives blood full of carbon dioxide from the body and the left receives oxygen-rich blood from the lungs but in gill-breathing vertebrates (as fishes) is only a single chamber