December 14, 2007


A peripteros with a peristasis.
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]

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