chapel

noun
chap·​el | \ ˈcha-pəl How to pronounce chapel (audio) \

Definition of chapel

1 : a subordinate or private place of worship: such as
a : a place of worship serving a residence or institution
b : a small house of worship usually associated with a main church
c : a room or recess in a church for meditation and prayer or small religious services
2 : a place of worship used by a Christian group other than an established church a nonconformist chapel
3 : a choir of singers belonging to a chapel
4 : a chapel service or assembly at a school or college
5 : an association of the employees in a printing office
b : a room for funeral services in a funeral home

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Did You Know?

Chapel is ultimately derived from the Late Latin word cappa, meaning "cloak." How did we get from a garment to a building? The answer to this question has to do with a shrine created to hold the sacred cloak of St. Martin of Tours. In Medieval Latin, this shrine was called "cappella" (from a diminutive of cappa meaning "short cloak or cape") in reference to the relic it contained. Later, the meaning of "cappella" broadened to include any building that housed a sacred relic, and eventually to a place of worship. Old French picked up the term as "chapele," which in turn passed into English as "chapel" in the 13th century. In case you are wondering, the term a cappella, meaning "without instrumental accompaniment," entered English from Italian, where it literally means "in chapel style."

Examples of chapel in a Sentence

a wedding chapel in Las Vegas Church services will be held in the chapel this week.

Recent Examples on the Web

The royal village church, with its plaques and monuments, is like the private chapel of ailing megalomaniacs: the shrine of a clique. Moira Hodgson, WSJ, "‘The Quest for Queen Mary’ Review: Mum’s the Word," 10 Feb. 2019 Advertising everything from auto shops and grocers to bars and chapels, Carey's work started from a simple commercial core (NextCity profiled him in 2017, noting Carey would even offer retouches to businesses for $10 or $15). Nathan Mattise, Ars Technica, "How do you preserve beloved New Orleans folk art? A Web font, of course," 23 Nov. 2018 More stories: Collapsed chapel, a school gym and hope, all part of this weekend's Mass Mob Immaculate Ukrainian Catholic Church is the largest Eastern Catholic Church of its own law, according to its website. Deasia Paige, Detroit Free Press, "Ukrainian Catholic tradition to be celebrated at next Detroit Mass Mob," 13 July 2018 Cambo said one tenant, a memorial chapel, has already vacated the site. Lisa J. Huriash, Sun-Sentinel.com, "Part of Margate shopping center may be demolished for new apartment complex," 6 July 2018 Relatives and friends may call at the funeral home chapel on Saturday morning (July 7th) from 9:00 10:30 am. courant.com, "John J. Leckfor," 5 July 2018 On Wednesdays from 7-8 p.m., Mark, 66, leads a current events discussion class at Temple Sholom's chapel, 132 SE 11th Ave. in Pompano Beach. Sergio Carmona, Jewish Journal, "Rabbi bringing people together through discussions," 22 June 2018 Service will follow at 11 at the funeral home chapel, with a graveside service thereafter at Greenwood Cemetery in Eustis. Orlando Sentinel, OrlandoSentinel.com, "Deaths in Central Florida: 6/5," 5 June 2018 There will be tours open to the public over the weekend for the chapel, which will be used for small weddings and funerals. Peter Marteka, Courant Community, "New Life For An Old House," 1 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'chapel.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of chapel

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for chapel

Middle English, from Anglo-French chapele, from Medieval Latin cappella, from diminutive of Late Latin cappa cloak; from the cloak of St. Martin of Tours preserved as a sacred relic in a chapel built for that purpose

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Statistics for chapel

Last Updated

18 Mar 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for chapel

The first known use of chapel was in the 13th century

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More Definitions for chapel

chapel

noun

English Language Learners Definition of chapel

: a small church
: a room or small building that is used for private church services or prayer by a family or group
: a room or area in a church that is used for prayer or small religious services

chapel

noun
chap·​el | \ ˈcha-pəl How to pronounce chapel (audio) \

Kids Definition of chapel

1 : a building or a room or place for prayer or special religious services
2 : a religious service or assembly held in a school or college

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More from Merriam-Webster on chapel

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with chapel

Spanish Central: Translation of chapel

Nglish: Translation of chapel for Spanish Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about chapel

Comments on chapel

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