ETYM Old Eng. chirche, chireche, cherche, Scot. kirk, from AS. circe, cyrice; akin to Dutch kerk, Icel. kirkja, Swed. kyrka.
1. A group of Christians; any group professing Christian doctrine or belief; SYN. Christian church, Christianity.
2. A building used for public (especially Christian) worship; SYN. church building.
Building designed as a Christian place of worship; also the Christian community generally, or a subdivision or denomination of it, such as the Church of England. Churches were first built in the 3rd century, when persecution ceased under the Holy Roman emperor Constantine.
The original church design was based on the Roman basilica, with a central nave, aisles either side, and an apse at one end. Many Western churches are built on an east–west axis with an altar at the east end, facing toward Jerusalem.
The church in the sense of the whole body of Christians is taken to include both those who are alive (the church militant) and those who have died and are in heaven (the church triumphant).
ETYM Scot.; cf. Icel. kirkja, of Greek origin. Related to Church.
1. A Scottish church.
1. The national church of Scotland as distinguished from the Church of England or the Episcopal Church in Scotland.
ETYM AS. mynster, from Latin monasterium. Related to Monastery.
Church associated with a monastery.
(British) A monastery church.
ETYM Old Eng. schrin, AS. scrîn, from Latin scrinium a case, chest, box.
A place of worship hallowed by association with some sacred thing or person.