grotto


noun, plural grot·toes, grot·tos.

  1. a cave or cavern.
  2. an artificial cavernlike recess or structure.

noun plural -toes or -tos

  1. a small cave, esp one with attractive features
  2. a construction in the form of a cave, esp as in landscaped gardens during the 18th century
n.

1610s, from Italian grotta, ultimately from Latin crypta “vault, cavern,” from Greek krypte “hidden place” (see crypt). Terminal -o may be from its being spelled that way in many translations of Dante’s “Divine Comedy.”

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