noun, plural columbaria [kol-uhm-bair-ee-uh] .
a sepulchral vault or other structure with recesses in the walls to receive the ashes of the dead.
any one of these recesses.

1840–50; < Latin: literally, a nesting box for pigeons, equivalent to columb(a) pigeon, dove + -ārium -ary Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
columbarium (ˌkɒləmˈbɛərɪəm)
n , pl -ia
1.  another name for a dovecote
2.  a vault having niches for funeral urns
3.  a hole in a wall into which a beam is inserted
[C18: from Latin, from columba dove]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin & History

"subterranean sepulchre in ancient Roman places with niches for urns holding remains," neut. of L. columbarius, "dove-cote" (so called from resemblance), lit. "pertaining to doves;" from columba "dove." Lit. sense of "dove-cote" is attested from 1881 in Eng.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Encyclopedia Britannica


sepulchral building containing many small niches for cinerary urns. The term is derived from the Latin columba ("dove," or "pigeon"), and it originally referred to a pigeon house or dovecote. It later acquired its more common meaning by association

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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Example sentences
Addresses for urns within a columbarium-it was almost too precious.
The columbarium is a wall with honeycomb niches for urns filled with cremated
The columbarium is proposed to be within a courtyard area within the
  educational building addition.
The cemetery also includes a columbarium wall for those who choose cremation.
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