A stoa is a long, covered pathway surrounding a building that was used primarily in ancient Greece. These structures allowed Greek citizens to meet and conduct business even on rainy days and enabled the social and political discourse unique to Greece during the Classical Period.
Romans used a similar architectural feature called an arcade, but their version consisted of a series of arches made into a long hallway. The Greek stoa was a more square-shaped lintel construction. The stoas and arcades of the Greek and Roman temples held special significance for ritual days because the priest or temple leader stood there when sacrificing.