Word of the Day – Tuesday, May 31st



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NAVE (nayv)

The central part of a church

Common clues: Pew's place; Section flanked by aisles; Center of a cathedral; Basilica part; Church area; Congregational area

Crossword puzzle frequency: 3 times a year

Frequency in English language: 12113 / 86800

Video: National Cathedral Nave

In Romanesque and Gothic Christian abbey, cathedral and church architecture, the nave is the central approach to the high altar. "Nave" ( Medieval Latin navis, "ship,") was probably suggested by the keel shape of its vaulting. The nave of a church, whether Romanesque, Gothic or Classical, extends from the entry—which may have a separate vestibule, the narthex— to the chancel and is flanked by lower aisles separated from the nave by an arcade.

Romanesque nave of the abbey church of Saint-Georges-de-Boscherville, Normandy/ Picture taken by Urban, December 2004/ GFDL

Though to a modern visitor the impressive nave seems to be the principal part of a Gothic church, ambitious churches were built in a series of campaigns as funds were available, working outward from the liturgically essential sanctuary, and many were consecrated before their nave was completed. Many naves were not completed to the initial plan, as tastes changed, and some naves were never completed at all. In Gothic architecture, the precise number of arcaded bays in the nave was not a material concern.

The height of the nave provides space for clerestory windows above the aisle roofs, which give light to the interior, leaving the apse in shadow, as at the abbey of Saint-Georges-de-Boscherville (illustration, above). The architectural antecedents of this construction lay in the secular Roman basilica, a kind of covered stoa sited adjacent to a forum, where magistrates met and public business was transacted.

This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Nave".  

10 We >1 96 Wheel hub

9 Mo+ >1 01 Church part APSE

7 We- >1 04 Pew area

6 We- >1 99 Pew locale

5 We+ >1 02 Basilica center

4 We- >1 07 Center of a cathedral

4 Th- >1 01 Congregational area

3 We+ >1 01 Basilica area APSE BEMA

08 Basilica section APSE BEMA

3 Mo+ >1 06 Central church area

3 Mo LAT 08 Central church section

3 Th- >1 08 Church center

3 We- >1 92 Hub CORE

3 We+ LAT 05 Main church section

3 Tu+ >1 01 Pew's place

3 Tu+ >1 07 Principal church area

2 Th- >1 07 Basilica part APSE

2 >1 06 Central part of a church

2 Tu >1 06 Hub of a wheel

2 Fr NYT 01 Narthex neighbor

2 Tu >1 02 Narthex's neighbor

2 Mo NYT 01 Pews' place

2 Fr- >1 07 Place to pray

03 Villainous-sounding church site

2 We CSy 99 Where the pews are