temple

noun (1)
tem·​ple | \ ˈtem-pəl How to pronounce temple (audio) \

Definition of temple

 (Entry 1 of 7)

1 : a building for religious practice: such as
a often capitalized : either of two successive national sanctuaries in ancient Jerusalem
b : a building for Mormon sacred ordinances
c : the house of worship of Reform and some Conservative Jewish congregations
2 : a local lodge of any of various fraternal orders also : the building housing it
3 : a place devoted to a special purpose a temple of cuisine

temple

noun (2)

Definition of temple (Entry 2 of 7)

1 : the flattened space on each side of the forehead of some mammals including humans
2 : one of the side supports of a pair of glasses jointed to the bows and passing on each side of the head

Temple

biographical name (1)
Tem·​ple | \ ˈtem-pəl How to pronounce Temple (audio) \

Definition of Temple (Entry 3 of 7)

Frederick 1821–1902 archbishop of Canterbury (1896–1902)

Temple

biographical name (2)

Definition of Temple (Entry 4 of 7)

Shirley 1928–2014 Shirley Temple Black American actress and diplomat

Temple

biographical name (3)

Definition of Temple (Entry 5 of 7)

Sir William 1628–1699 British statesman

Temple

biographical name (4)

Definition of Temple (Entry 6 of 7)

William 1881–1944 son of Frederick Temple archbishop of Canterbury (1942–44)

Temple

geographical name
Tem·​ple | \ ˈtem-pəl How to pronounce Temple (audio) \

Definition of Temple (Entry 7 of 7)

city in northeast central Texas south-southwest of Waco population 66,102

Other Words from temple

Noun (1)

templed \ ˈtem-​pəld How to pronounce templed (audio) \ adjective

First Known Use of temple

Noun (1)

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Noun (2)

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for temple

Noun (1)

Middle English, in part going back to Old English tempel, templ, in part borrowed from Anglo-French temple, both borrowed from Latin templum "space of sky or land delimited orally by an augur, piece of ground used for taking auspices, sacred precinct, building consecrated to a deity," of uncertain origin

Note: Latin templum has been traditionally derived from the Indo-European verbal base tem- "cut" (see tome), on the assumption that the original templum was a space "cut out" by the augur; the suffix would presumably be -lo-, with the -p- secondary. Greek témenos "sacred precinct" has been compared. More recently templum as been associated with a putative *temp- "stretch, extend," assuming a further sense "measure" (see tempo); the templum would then be a space "measured" by an augur.

Noun (2)

Middle English, borrowed from Anglo-French, going back to Vulgar Latin *tempula, altered (with conformation to the suffix -ula) from Latin tempora, plural (taken as feminine singular) of tempus "side of the forehead, temple," of uncertain origin

Note: On the assumption that Latin tempor-, tempus "time" meant originally "stretch, extent" (see tempo) tempus "temple" has been taken as a semantic bifurcation of the same word, the temple of the head being the place where the skin is stretched tightly against the skull. Compare Old Norse þunn-vangi, Old High German dunnwangi "temple," literally, "thin-cheek."

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about temple

Statistics for temple

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for temple

The first known use of temple was before the 12th century

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for temple

temple

noun
tem·​ple | \ ˈtem-pəl How to pronounce temple (audio) \

Kids Definition of temple

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a building for worship

temple

noun

Kids Definition of temple (Entry 2 of 2)

: the flattened space on either side of the forehead

temple

noun
tem·​ple | \ ˈtem-pəl How to pronounce temple (audio) \

Medical Definition of temple

1 : the flattened space on each side of the forehead of some mammals (as humans)
2 : one of the side supports of a pair of glasses jointed to the bows and passing on each side of the head

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on temple

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

WORD OF THE DAY

appealing forcibly to the mind or reason

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Farm Idioms Quiz

  • cow coming home
  • What does 'poke' refer to in the expression 'pig in a poke'?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Word Winder's CrossWinder

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

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

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