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

During his stream, the 23-year-old beautiful bride could be seen entering the chapel with her husband-to-be, along with his brothers Kevin and Nick. Lucy Wood, Marie Claire, "Sophie Turner and Joe Jonas Got Married With a Las Vegas Wedding After the Billboard Awards," 2 May 2019 Just hours after Joe Jonas hit the stage with brothers Nick and Kevin Jonas at the Billboard Music Awards in Las Vegas on Wednesday, May 1, the DNCE frontman hit the wedding chapel with fiancée Sophie Turner to tie the knot. Nicole Briese, Allure, "Sophie Turner and Joe Jonas Had a Quickie Vegas Wedding After the Billboard Music Awards," 2 May 2019 There’s a power plant, fire station, water tower, green houses, laundry and chapel, and even an old bowling alley fashioned from a Quonset hut. Scott Mcfetridge, The Seattle Times, "Huge ghost town next door clouds Iowa city’s future," 30 Mar. 2019 In churches, in wedding chapels, in maternity wards across this country and around the world. Bridget Read, Vogue, "GOP Senator Mike Lee Says Very Real, Terrifying Climate-Change Problem Should Be Solved by . . . Babies," 26 Mar. 2019 On that morning in Italy, dressed in head-to-toe Louis Vuitton, a SaksFirst Limitless client entered the historic chapel at dawn before anyone else was allowed in. Diana Nguyen, Harper's BAZAAR, "The Woman Behind New York’s Most Glamorous Closets," 22 Mar. 2019 Baptized with the full name of Louis Arthur Charles of Cambridge, he was celebrated in a private ceremony in the same small chapel where his brother George was christened in October 2013. Maeve Mcdermott, USA TODAY, "Prince Louis wore the same christening gown as siblings George and Charlotte," 9 July 2018 Earlier this month, Duke University President Vincent E. Price announced the school would leave empty a space at the entry to its chapel where a statue of Robert E. Lee had stood. Melissa Korn, WSJ, "Welcome Students, Let’s Talk About Confederate Statues," 22 Aug. 2018 However, the family then went to mass at Monaco’s grand Palatine chapel. Elise Taylor, Vogue, "How Monaco’s Royal Family Spent Christmas This Year," 4 Jan. 2019

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

13 May 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

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