|—n , pl -pies|
|1.||an ornamental awning above a throne or bed or held over a person of importance on ceremonial occasions|
|2.||a rooflike covering over an altar, niche, etc|
|3.||a roofed structure serving as a sheltered passageway or area|
|4.||a large or wide covering, esp one high above: the sky was a grey canopy|
|5.||the nylon or silk hemisphere that forms the supporting surface of a parachute|
|6.||the transparent cover of an aircraft cockpit|
|7.||the highest level of branches and foliage in a forest, formed by the crowns of the trees|
|—vb , -pies, -pies, -pying, -pied|
|8.||(tr) to cover with or as if with a canopy|
|[C14: from Medieval Latin canōpeum mosquito net, from Latin cōnōpeum gauze net, from Greek kōnōpeion bed with protective net, from kōnōps mosquito]|
in architecture, a projecting hood or cover suspended over an altar, statue, or niche. It originally symbolized a divine and royal presence and was probably derived from the cosmic audience tent of the Achaemenian kings of Persia. In the Middle Ages it became a symbol of the divine presence in churches. During the 14th and 15th centuries, tombs, statues, and niches were overhung with richly decorated tabernacle work in stone, and these were reflected in delicate spiral wooden canopies over fonts.
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