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Baptistery

A building or part of a building in which baptism is administered. One of the rooms in the third-century house-church at Dura-Europos was furnished as a baptistery with font and canopy. Separate baptisteries appear in the fourth century, sometimes containing a suite of rooms; candidates assembled in one, disrobed in another, were baptized in the next, dressed in white robes in a fourth-and thence entered the church. During the Middle Ages, baptisteries ceased to be built, a font at the back of the church being regarded as sufficient provision for baptism. There have been some modern attempts to give greater prominence to the place of baptism, in architectural terms.