Apse (#), n.; pl. Apses (#). [See Apsis.]

1. Arch. (a)

A projecting part of a building, esp. of a church, having in the plan a polygonal or semicircular termination, and, most often, projecting from the east end. In early churches the Eastern apse was occupied by seats for the bishop and clergy.

Hence: (b)

The bishop's seat or throne, in ancient churches.


A reliquary, or case in which the relics of saints were kept.

⇒ This word is also written apsis and absis.


© Webster 1913.