Altar Steps


Altar Steps
Altar Steps
The number of steps leading up to the high altar is for symbolical reasons uneven; usually three, five, or seven, including the upper platform

Catholic Encyclopedia. . 2006.

Altar Steps
    Altar Steps
     Catholic_Encyclopedia Altar Steps
    In the beginning altars were not erected on steps. Those in the catacombs were constructed on the pavement, and in churches they were usually erected over the confession, or spot where the remains of martyrs were deposited. In the fourth century the altar was supported by one step above the floor of the sanctuary. At present the number of steps leading up to the high altar is for symbolical reasons uneven; usually three, five, or seven, including the upper platform (predella). These steps are to pass around the altar on three sides. They may be of wood, stone, or bricks, but St. Charles (Instructions on Ecclesiastical Building, xi, no. 2) would have the two or four lower steps of stone or bricks, whilst he prescribes that the predella, on which the celebrant stands, should be made of wood. The steps should be about one foot in breadth. The predella should extend along the front of the altar with a breadth of about three feet six inches, and at the sides of the altar about one foot. The height of each step ought to be about six inches. Side altars must have at least one step.
    A.J. SCHULTE
    Transcribed by Michael C. Tinkler

The Catholic Encyclopedia, Volume VIII. — New York: Robert Appleton Company. . 1910.


Catholic encyclopedia.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Altar Carpets — • The sanctuary and altar steps of the high altar are ordinarily to be covered with carpets Catholic Encyclopedia. Kevin Knight. 2006. Altar Carpets     Altar Carpets      …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • Altar (in Liturgy) — • In the New Law the altar is the table on which the Eucharistic Sacrifice is offered Catholic Encyclopedia. Kevin Knight. 2006. Altar (in Liturgy)     Altar (in Liturgy) …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • Altar Lamp — • In the Old Testament God commanded that a lamp filled with the purest oil of olives should always burn in the Tabernacle of the Testimony without the veil Catholic Encyclopedia. Kevin Knight. 2006. Altar Lamp     Altar Lamp …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • Altar (Catholicism) — High altar of St. Michael s Church, Munich. In the liturgy of the Roman Catholic Church, the altar is where the Sacrifice of the Mass is offered. Mass may sometimes be celebrated outside a sacred place, but never without an altar, or at least an… …   Wikipedia

  • ALTAR — (Heb. מִזְבֵּח, mizbe aḥ, derived from the root zbḥ (זבח), meaning to slaughter (as a sacrifice) ), originally the place where sacrificial slaughter was performed (e.g., the sacrifice of Isaac in Gen. 22). According to biblical law however,… …   Encyclopedia of Judaism

  • Altar Ledge — • A step behind the altar, raised slightly above it, for candlesticks, flowers, reliquaries, and other ornaments Catholic Encyclopedia. Kevin Knight. 2006. Altar Ledge     Altar Ledge   …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • Steps, Altar — • The number of steps leading up to the high altar is for symbolical reasons uneven; usually three, five, or seven, including the upper platform Catholic Encyclopedia. Kevin Knight. 2006 …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • Altar Candlesticks — • Consists of five parts: the foot, the stem, the knob about the middle of the stem, the bowl to receive the drippings of wax, and the pricket, i.e. the sharp point that terminates the stem on which the candle is fixed Catholic Encyclopedia.… …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • Altar Screen — • A cloth, on which images of Our Lord, of the Blessed Virgin, or of saints, are represented, may be suspended above the altar, unless such images are painted on the wall Catholic Encyclopedia. Kevin Knight. 2006. Altar Screen     Alta …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • Altar Cards — • To assist the memory of the celebrant at Mass in those prayers which he should know by heart, cards on which these prayers are printed are placed on the altar in the middle, and at each end Catholic Encyclopedia. Kevin Knight. 2006. Altar Cards …   Catholic encyclopedia


Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.