a) An underfloor space or flue through which heat from a furnace passes to heat the floor of a room or a bath, as illustrated by the ancient Roman hypocaustum, and the traditional Korean ondol (온돌, 溫突).
b) An underfloor heating system, even without such an underfloor space or flue, as adapted to the modern housing, east and west. <!Underfloor heating was first used by the Romans. Initially the preserve of the rich, underfloor heating became increasingly commonplace in public buildings and villas, particularly in the colder regions of the Roman Empire.

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  • Hypocaust — Hyp o*caust, n. [L. hypocaustum, Gr. ?; ? under + ? to burn: cf. F. hypocauste.] (Anc. Arch.) A furnace, esp. one connected with a series of small chambers and flues of tiles or other masonry through which the heat of a fire was distributed to… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • hypocaust — ► NOUN ▪ an ancient Roman heating system, comprising a hollow space under the floor into which hot air was directed. ORIGIN Greek hupokauston place heated from below …   English terms dictionary

  • hypocaust — [hī′pō kôst΄, hip′ōkôst΄] n. [L hypocaustum < Gr hypokauston < hypokaiein, to heat by applying fire below < hypo (see HYPO ) + kaiein, to burn] a space below the floor in some ancient Roman buildings, into which hot air was piped to warm …   English World dictionary

  • Hypocaust — A hypocaust (Latin hypocaustum ) is an ancient Roman system of central heating. The word literally means heat from below , from the Greek hypo meaning below or underneath, and kaiein , to burn or light a fire. They are traditionally considered to …   Wikipedia

  • hypocaust — /huy peuh kawst , hip euh /, n. a hollow space or system of channels in the floor or walls of some ancient Roman buildings that provided a central heating system by receiving and distributing the heat from a furnace. [1670 80; < L hypocaustum …   Universalium

  • Hypocaust — Ein Hypokaustum oder Hypokauste (griech. hypokauston = „von unten heizen“) ist eine Warmluftheizung (Hypokaustenheizung), bei der ein massiver Körper mit warmer Luft durchströmt wird, der aber im Vergleich zu einem Heizkörper eine niedrigere… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • hypocaust — noun Etymology: Latin hypocaustum, from Greek hypokauston, from hypokaiein to light a fire under, from hypo + kaiein to burn Date: 1678 an ancient Roman central heating system with underground furnace and tile flues to distribute the heat …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • hypocaust —    (HYE poh kawst) [Latin, from Greek] In ancient Rome, a space or channel, under the floor or in the wall, in which heated air was received and distributed through a central heating system. In the summer palace of Herod the Great (d. 4 b.c.) on… …   Dictionary of foreign words and phrases

  • hypocaust — [ hʌɪpə(ʊ)kɔ:st] noun an ancient Roman heating system, comprising a hollow space under the floor into which hot air was directed. Origin from L. hypocaustum, from Gk hupokauston place heated from below …   English new terms dictionary

  • hypocaust — hy·po·caust …   English syllables

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