a vacant enclosed area in front of a church.
a colonnade or portico in front of a church.

Origin of parvis

1350–1400; Middle English < Middle French; Old French pare(v)is < Late Latin paradīsus church courtyard, orig. the one before St. Peter's, Rome. See paradise
Also called paradise. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for parvis

Historical Examples of parvis

  • The Parvis was filled with a thick smoke, which the musketry streaked with flame.

  • Thanks to this thicket of pikes and arquebuses, the Parvis was empty.

  • Parvis took the journal from her, directing his glasses to the portrait.

  • Parvis continued to scrutinize her, as if trying to intercept her gaze.

  • The canons for whom these beautiful homes were constructed had only to cross the parvis to enter the cathedral.

British Dictionary definitions for parvis




a court or portico in front of a building, esp a church

Word Origin for parvis

C14: via Old French from Late Latin paradīsus paradise
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012