According to Merriam Webster, creche has multiple (four) meanings. First, a small or large modeled representation or tableau of Mary, Joseph, and others around the crib of Jesus in the stable at Bethlehem, as is displayed in homes or erected for exhibition in a community at Christmas season or a home for foundlings.

In British English it means a day-care center; day nursery. In the field of animal behavior it can mean an assemblage of dependent young that are cared for communally.

The first definition is the most commonly used. A manger or trough is a rack for fodder, or a structure or feeder used to hold food for animals. The word comes from the French 'manger' ("to eat"), from Latin 'mandere' (meaning "to chew").

Mangers are mostly used in livestock raising and generally found at stables and farmhouses. They are also used to feed wild animals, e.g., in nature reserves. A similar trough providing drinking water for domestic or non-domestic animals is a watering trough and may be part of a larger watering structure called 'abreuvoir'.

The creche is, most often referred to as a Christian symbol, associated with nativity scenes where Mary and Joseph, forced by necessity to stay in a room for animals instead of a guest room, used a manger as a makeshift crib for the Baby Jesus.

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