Etymology
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columbarium (n.)

"subterranean sepulchre in ancient Roman places with niches for urns holding remains," 1540s, neuter of Latin columbarius, "dove-cote" (the funereal place so called from resemblance), literally "pertaining to doves;" from columba "dove, pigeon," a word of uncertain origin. Literal sense of "dove-cote" in English is attested from 1881.

updated on June 08, 2020

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