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American Dictionary of the English Language

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Theatre


THE'ATRE, noun [Latin theatrum; Gr. to see.]

1. Among the ancients, an edifice in which spectacles or shows were exhibited for the amusement of spectators.

2. In modern times, a house for the exhibition of dramatic performances, as tragedies, comedies and farces; a play-house; comprehending the stage, the pit, the boxes, galleries and orchester.

3. Among the Italians, an assemblage of buildings, which by a happy disposition and elevation, represents an agreeable scene to the eye.

4. A place rising by steps or gradations like the seats of a theater.

Shade above shade, a woody theater

Of stateliest view--

5. A place of action or exhibition; as the theater of the world.

6. A building for the exhibition of scholastic exercises, as at Oxford, or for other exhibitions.

Anatomical theater, a hall with several rows of seats, disposed in the manner of an amphitheater, and a table turning on a pivot in the middle, for anatomical demonstrations.