compluvium


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Related to compluvium: The impluvium

compluvium

compluvium, B
The aperture in the center of the roof of the atrium in a Roman house, sloping inward to discharge rainwater into a cistern or tank.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Architecture and Construction. Copyright © 2003 by McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
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Under the compluvium (the opening that let the rain in), the impluvium was more than just a cistern, for the image of the sky was caught in it, and light was reflected upwards to the roof and surrounding rooms, as well as reaching them from above.(5) Water, luminosity, volume and structure were all intimately related.
This large central hallway typically had a fair sized rectangular hole in the roof (compluvium) through which rainwater fell and collected in an impluvium (no 4) or catchment pool.