Definitions

circum'ambulatory

Ambulatory

[am-byuh-luh-tawr-ee, -tohr-ee]
The ambulatory (Med. Lat. ambulatorium, a place for walking, from ambulare, to walk) is the covered passage around a cloister; a term applied sometimes to the procession way around the east end of a cathedral or large church and behind the high altar.

Aisles that line the nave extend through the transept and continue in a half-circle that runs behind the apse. Along the ambulatory, there are small chapels (chantries). This modification by Romanesque architects allowed visitors to move freely around the altar without disturbing the monks' devotions.

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