lecture hall ［講堂］ ( kōdō): One of the main structures on the compound of a Buddhist temple, in which sutras are read, Buddhist doctrines taught, and rituals performed. The lecture hall has traditionally been one of the seven structures on the grounds of Buddhist temples in Japan. Located behind the main hall on the temple compound, it is generally more spacious than the other buildings, including the main hall. It is the building where priests assemble to listen to sermons and attend rituals. Some of the oldest surviving lecture halls in Japan are the hall called Dempō-dō in the eastern precinct of Hōryū-ji temple in Nara, built in 739; the hall at Tōshōdai-ji temple in Nara, built around 760; and the hall in the western precinct of Hōryū-ji temple, built in 990.