Share this entry

propylaeum Syllabification: prop·y·lae·um
Pronunciation: /ˌpräpəˈlēəm/

Definition of propylaeum in English:

noun (plural propylaea-ˈlēə)

1The structure forming the entrance to a temple.
Example sentences
  • These venturi formed ventilation flues and water storage tanks, together with the entrance propylaea and dramatic earth sculpture, demonstrating the effect the architects were seeking, ‘the earth rises and falls like a human breast’.
  • Distantly inspired by the propylaea on the Acropolis in Athens, it was the first of the ceremonial Doric gateways to rise in modern Europe.
1.1 (the Propylaeum) The entrance to the Acropolis at Athens.


Via Latin from Greek propulaion, neuter (used as a noun) of propulaios 'before the gate', from pro 'before' + pulē 'gate'.

Words that rhyme with propylaeum

athenaeum, atheneum, coliseum, Liam, lyceum, mausoleum, museum, peritoneum, Te Deum

Definition of propylaeum in:

Share this entry


What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove ads and access premium resources