clere·​sto·​ry | \ ˈklir-ˌstȯr-ē How to pronounce clerestory (audio) , -st(ə-)rē \
variants: or less commonly

Definition of clerestory

1 : an outside wall of a room or building that rises above an adjoining roof and contains windows

Illustration of clerestory

Illustration of clerestory

clerestory 1

Examples of clerestory in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web And so Notre Dame’s clerestory windows were enlarged, the roofs changed and the flying buttresses reconstructed, although the cathedral remained relatively dark despite its fashionable update. Washington Post, "The battle for Notre Dame," 16 Jan. 2020 Its powder blue entry accesses the interior, which is anchored by an open-concept great room under skylights and clerestories. Jack Flemming,, "‘South Park’ producer Eric Stough swaps spots in Westchester," 10 July 2019 Rich in modernist style, the Laurel Canyon home pairs walls of glass, clerestories and skylights with various shades of hardwood in the open floor plan. Jack Flemming, Los Angeles Times, "Actress Sarah Carter scoops up Brie Larson’s Hollywood Hills home," 27 Aug. 2019 The multilevel house, completed last year, has a clean-looking black façade punctuated by bands of clerestory windows and sliding glass doors. Los Angeles Times, "Hot Property Newsletter: L.A.’s celebrity-forward neighborhoods see more realty action," 19 Oct. 2019 In one converted garage project, long clerestory windows were placed high on the walls of a small living room. Washington Post, "Biophilic decor: Ways to bring the feel of nature indoors," 15 Oct. 2019 In this converted garage project, long clerestory windows were placed high on the walls of a small living room. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Biophilic decor: Ways to bring the feel of nature indoors," 15 Oct. 2019 The 2,090-square-foot home features beamed ceilings, cork flooring, clerestories and painted brick. Los Angeles Times, "Restored post-and-beam in Pasadena was architect’s own home," 6 Aug. 2019 Skylights, bands of clerestories and floor-to-ceiling windows bring natural light into the white-walled interior. Los Angeles Times, "Actor-spokesman Dennis Haysbert looks to leave Malibu home in good hands," 22 Aug. 2019

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

See More

First Known Use of clerestory

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for clerestory

Middle English, from clere clear + story

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about clerestory

Time Traveler for clerestory

Time Traveler

The first known use of clerestory was in the 15th century

See more words from the same century

Statistics for clerestory

Last Updated

21 Jan 2020

Cite this Entry

“Clerestory.” The Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., Accessed 23 January 2020.

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for clerestory


How to pronounce clerestory (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of clerestory

technical : the upper part of a wall that rises above a roof and that has windows

More from Merriam-Webster on clerestory

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with clerestory Encyclopedia article about clerestory

Comments on clerestory

What made you want to look up clerestory? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


out of the ordinary or unreasonable

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Intact Latin Quiz

  • roman tablet
  • What did focus mean in Latin?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

Add Diction

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!