Holy-of-holies



noun
1.
a place of special sacredness.
2.
the innermost chamber of the Biblical tabernacle and the Temple in Jerusalem, in which the ark of the covenant was kept.
3.
Eastern Church. the bema.
noun
1.
any place of special sanctity
2.
(capitals) the innermost compartment of the Jewish tabernacle, and later of the Temple, where the Ark was enshrined

the second or interior portion of the tabernacle. It was left in total darkness. No one was permitted to enter it except the high priest, and that only once a year. It contained the ark of the covenant only (Ex. 25:10-16). It was in the form of a perfect cube of 20 cubits. (See TABERNACLE.)

A place of awe or sacredness, as in The corporate board room is the holy of holies here. This expression is a translation of the Hebrew term for the sanctuary inside the tabernacle of the Temple of Jerusalem, where the sacred Ark of the Covenant was kept (Exodus 26:34). Its figurative use dates from the second half of the 1800s.

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