1. a private or subordinate place of prayer or worship; oratory.
  2. a separately dedicated part of a church, or a small independent churchlike edifice, devoted to special services.
  3. a room or building for worship in an institution, palace, etc.
  4. (in Great Britain) a place of worship for members of various dissenting Protestant churches, as Baptists or Methodists.
  5. a separate place of public worship dependent on the church of a parish.
  6. a religious service in a chapel: Don’t be late for chapel!
  7. a funeral home or the room in which funeral services are held.
  8. a choir or orchestra of a chapel, court, etc.
  9. a print shop or printing house.
  10. an association of employees in a print shop for dealing with their interests, problems, etc.

verb (used with object), chap·eled, chap·el·ing or (especially British) chap·elled, chap·el·ling.

  1. Nautical. to maneuver (a sailing vessel taken aback) by the helm alone until the wind can be recovered on the original tack.


  1. (in England) belonging to any of various dissenting Protestant sects.


  1. a place of Christian worship in a larger building, esp a place set apart, with a separate altar, in a church or cathedral
  2. a similar place of worship in or attached to a large house or institution, such as a college, hospital or prison
  3. a church subordinate to a parish church
  4. (in Britain)
    1. a Nonconformist place of worship
    2. Nonconformist religious practices or doctrine
    3. (as adjective)he is chapel, but his wife is church Compare church (def. 8)
  5. (in Scotland) a Roman Catholic church
  6. the members of a trade union in a particular newspaper office, printing house, etc
  7. a printing office

early 13c., from Old French chapele (12c., Modern French chapelle), from Medieval Latin cappella “chapel, sanctuary for relics,” literally “little cape,” diminutive of Late Latin cappa “cape” (see cap (n.)); by tradition, originally in reference to the sanctuary in France in which the miraculous cape of St. Martin of Tours, patron saint of France, was preserved; meaning extended in most European languages to “any sanctuary.” (While serving Rome as a soldier deployed in Gaul, Martin cut his military coat in half to share it with a ragged beggar. That night, Martin dreamed Christ wearing the half-cloak; the half Martin kept was the relic.)

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