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conventicle

play
noun con·ven·ti·cle \kən-ˈven-ti-kəl\

Definition of conventicle

  1. 1 :  assembly, meeting

  2. 2 :  an assembly of an irregular or unlawful character

  3. 3 :  an assembly for religious worship; especially :  a secret meeting for worship not sanctioned by law

  4. 4 :  meetinghouse

conventicler play \-k(ə-)lər\ noun


Did You Know?

Conventicle comes to us from Latin conventiculum and ultimately from convenire, meaning "to assemble." Conventiculum means "place of assembly" (it was applied in particular to Roman Christian meetinghouses) or simply "assembly." The English "conventicle" also originally meant "assembly." It then developed an application to illegal meetings, which, in turn, led to the arrival of a sense describing secret meetings for worship in a religion proscribed by law. And finally, "conventicle" developed a sense of "meetinghouse," echoing the earlier use of "conventiculum."

Origin of conventicle

Middle English, from Latin conventiculum, diminutive of conventus assembly


First Known Use: 14th century

Rhymes with conventicle


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