Portal (i.e. avant-portail), an architectural term, designates an external canopy raised in front of the principal doors of a church by way of shelter, whereas a porch is a projecting outwork independent of the door. SEE PORCH. There are fine examples of portals in the cathedrals of Rheims, Paris, St. Ouen's, and Rouen, Amiens, Sems, Senlis, anti Bourges, Westminster, and of smaller dimensions at churches in Salisbury, Lichfield, and Verona and other Italian towns. "Penniless porch," the resort of beggars, was the local name of the cemetery-gate of Wells.