hall


From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:

Hall \Hall\ (h[add]l), n. [OE. halle, hal, AS. heal, heall; akin
   to D. hal, OS. & OHG. halla, G. halle, Icel. h["o]ll, and
   prob. from a root meaning, to hide, conceal, cover. See
   Hell, Helmet.]
   1. A building or room of considerable size and stateliness,
      used for public purposes; as, Westminster Hall, in London.
      [1913 Webster]

   2.
      (a) The chief room in a castle or manor house, and in
          early times the only public room, serving as the place
          of gathering for the lord's family with the retainers
          and servants, also for cooking and eating. It was
          often contrasted with the bower, which was the
          private or sleeping apartment.
          [1913 Webster]

                Full sooty was her bower and eke her hall.
                                                  --Chaucer.
          Hence, as the entrance from outside was directly into
          the hall:
      (b) A vestibule, entrance room, etc., in the more
          elaborated buildings of later times. Hence:
      (c) Any corridor or passage in a building.
          [1913 Webster]

   3. A name given to many manor houses because the magistrate's
      court was held in the hall of his mansion; a chief mansion
      house. --Cowell.
      [1913 Webster]

   4. A college in an English university (at Oxford, an
      unendowed college).
      [1913 Webster]

   5. The apartment in which English university students dine in
      common; hence, the dinner itself; as, hall is at six
      o'clock.
      [1913 Webster]

   6. Cleared passageway in a crowd; -- formerly an exclamation.
      [Obs.] "A hall! a hall!" --B. Jonson.

   Syn: Entry; court; passage. See Vestibule.
        [1913 Webster]
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