Looking for sources of Mediaeval church architecture that shows and\or explains hard to find architectural church additions?

I can recall visiting some old Medieval churches while in France and one parish church in particular had a sort of exterior door that opened to an outdoor pulpit that could only be accessed from the interior of the church. It was explained to me that in times of old this was used by the "porter" or other church ecclesiastic to announce the weekly news and events after mass on Sundays and other major ecclesiastical celebrations.

I would like to know the name of this particular addition to the church. I was told the name some years ago, but cannot recall it.

Perhaps it was something along the lines of the Latin word: Praeconium. This should not be confused with the Praeconium Pascale or Easter Exsultet which was proclaimed from the pulpit.

If a source of this piece (type) of Medieval architecture has a name I would greatly appreciate it, even if it it is in Latin only.

This architectural design should not be confused with what was known as the ambo or the wooden pulpit was can still be easily be found in many churches today.

In Western Catholic Churches, the stand used for readings and homilies is formally called the ambo. Despite its name, this structure usually more closely resembles a lectern than the ambon of the Eastern Catholic Churches. The readings are typically read from an ambo in the sanctuary, and depending on the arrangement of the church, the homily may be delivered from a raised pulpit where there is one. Pulpit

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The pulpit of the Notre-Dame de Revel in Revel, Haute-Garonne, France.

If one can find other unique styles of Church additions from the Middle Ages, I would be equally interested also.

In case this is unobtainable, I would would consider accepting a well defined sources that had other information that is explicitly explaining hard to find historical church additions.

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    I would think that the most probable source would come from a history of architecture book specializing in church floorplans Aug 18 at 11:46

1 Answer 1


The southern Indian state of Kerala has a good number of churches built in the Middle Ages by the Portuguese. Those churches own a lot of land, much of which had been received as gifts from the then rulers. As such, the churches were able to build small extensions in the form of a cross, mostly made of concrete, accompanied by a chapel called Kappela (the word tracing its origin to Portuguese). These constructions, locally called 'Kurishadi' literally meaning 'by the cross' were done on three sides of the Church that is west, south and north, at a distance of say, half a mile, from the church. The chapels accompanying the cross would not host the Holy Eucharist and would be used for devotions like rosary and novena. These extended constructions of the church are so popular that they have become landmarks with the same name (Please find more information on Wikipedia Kurishadi/ Kappela and Christianity in Kerala: Church Architecture)

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