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A peripteros with a peristasis.

Peripteros (Greek: Περίπτερος) is the special name given to a type of ancient Greek or Roman temple surrounded by a portico with columns. It refers to the useful element for the architectural definition of buildings surrounded around their outside by a colonnade (pteron) on all four sides of the cella (naos), creating a four-sided arcade (peristasis). By extension, it also means simply the perimeter of a building (typically a classical temple), when that perimeter is made up of columns.[1] The term is frequently used of buildings in the Doric order.[1]


The peripteros can be a portico, a kiosk or a chapel. If it made up of four columns, it is tetrastyle; of 6, hexastyle; of 8, octastyle; of 10, decastyle; and of 12, dodecastyle. If the columns are fitted into the wall instead of standing alone, it is called a pseudo-peripteros.[citation needed]


  1. ^ a b Reber, Franz von; Joseph Thacher Clarke (1882). History of Ancient Art. University of Wisconsin - Madison: Harper & Brothers. pp. 419–420. Retrieved 2007-11-06.