atri·​um | \ ˈā-trē-əm How to pronounce atrium (audio) \
plural atria\ ˈā-​trē-​ə How to pronounce atrium (audio) \ also atriums

Definition of atrium

1 : the central room of a Roman house
2 plural usually atriums
a : a rectangular open patio around which a house is built
b : a many-storied court in a building (such as a hotel) usually with a skylight
3 [New Latin, from Latin] : an anatomical cavity or passage especially : the chamber or either of the chambers of the heart that receives blood from the veins and forces it into the ventricle or ventricles — see heart illustration

Other Words from atrium

atrial \ ˈā-​trē-​əl How to pronounce atrium (audio) \ adjective

Did you know?

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 Web Each ship gets a spooky makeover with its own Pumpkin Tree in the atrium along with costume parties, trick-or-treating, scary movies and other events for both children and adults. Richard Tribou, Orlando Sentinel, 3 May 2022 At night, the atrium’s neon lantern remains visible from the street. Los Angeles Times, 12 Apr. 2022 The center’s soaring four-story atrium will be named after the financier and philanthropist Kenneth C. Griffin, in honor of his $40 million gift to the project. New York Times, 28 Mar. 2022 At a career fair in the domestic terminal atrium at the Atlanta airport on Wednesday, about 60 employers were hiring for 3,600 job openings. Kelly Yamanouchi, ajc, 24 Mar. 2022 The show finale brings something new to the cruise line as characters will lead the audience out of the theater and into the Grand Hall atrium. Richard Tribou,, 23 Mar. 2022 That includes an indoor pond in an atrium room that perhaps can be best described as a nature lounge. Jim Riccioli, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 23 Mar. 2022 The Wall of Honor made its debut in the 2019-20 season and resides in the north atrium of Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse. Ashley Bastock, cleveland, 9 Mar. 2022 Upon entering, guests are greeted in the gorgeous atrium-style lobby, which also comes with a stunning mosaic portrait of its namesake Beatrice DePasquale Temkin. Stacey Leasca, Travel + Leisure, 9 Mar. 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'atrium.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of atrium

1577, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for atrium


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Last Updated

12 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Atrium.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 24 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for atrium


atri·​um | \ ˈā-trē-əm How to pronounce atrium (audio) \

Kids Definition of atrium

: the part of the heart that receives blood from the veins


atri·​um | \ ˈā-trē-əm How to pronounce atrium (audio) \
plural atria\ -​trē-​ə How to pronounce atrium (audio) \ also atriums

Medical Definition of atrium

: an anatomical cavity or passage especially : a chamber of the heart that receives blood from the veins and forces it into a ventricle or ventricles


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