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Sanctuary Definition

Other Sanctuary Definition

[n] area around the altar of a church for the clergy and choir; often enclosed by a lattice or railing
[n] a shelter from danger or hardship
[n] a consecrated place where sacred objects are kept

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asylum, bema, chancel, refuge

Misc. Definitions

\Sanc"tu*a*ry\, n.; pl. {Sanctuaries}. [OE. seintuarie, OF. saintuaire, F. sanctuaire, fr. L. sanctuarium, from sanctus sacred, holy. See {Saint}.] A sacred place; a consecrated spot; a holy and inviolable site. Hence, specifically: (a) The most retired part of the temple at Jerusalem, called the Holy of Holies, in which was kept the ark of the covenant, and into which no person was permitted to enter except the high priest, and he only once a year, to intercede for the people; also, the most sacred part of the tabernacle; also, the temple at Jerusalem. (b) (Arch.) The most sacred part of any religious building, esp. that part of a Christian church in which the altar is placed. (c) A house consecrated to the worship of God; a place where divine service is performed; a church, temple, or other place of worship. (d) A sacred and inviolable asylum; a place of refuge and protection; shelter; refuge; protection. These laws, whoever made them, bestowed on temples the privilege of sanctuary. --Milton. The admirable works of painting were made fuel for the fire; but some relics of it took sanctuary under ground, and escaped the common destiny. --Dryden.

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