Hall Church

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Hall church

A church with side aisles as high, or nearly as high, as the central nave.

Hall Church


a long church with naves of equal height or with a slightly higher middle nave without windows (pseudobasilica). There are also single-naved hall churches without transepts, such as Predigtkirchen (preaching churches) and churches belonging to mendicant orders often followed this design. The even lighting of a hall church conceals its interior articulation and creates a worldly atmosphere. This makes the church particularly suitable for community group meetings.

Several well-known hall churches with at least two naves date from the llth century (for example, St. Bartholomew Chapel, Paderborn, Germany, c. 1017, and St. Sernin Church, Toulouse, France, end of the llth century). During the 12th century, hall churches became prevalent in Westphalia and were the models for the parish churches built from the 13th to the 15th century in the Hanseatic cities (the most famous was the Roman Catholic Church of the Virgin Mary, Gdansk, 1343–1502). Gothic hall churches were also built in Italy, Spain, and other European countries. Hall cathedrals were less frequently built (for example, Bristol Cathedral, Great Britain, begun in 1142, rebuilt during the 13th, 14th, and 15th centuries). Since the time of the Renaissance, very few hall churches have been built.


Rosemann, H. Die Hallenkirche auf germanischem Boden. Munich, 1924. (Dissertation.)

hall church

A church having aisles, no clerestory, and an interior of approximately uniform height.