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 (bĕth′əl, bĕth′ĕl′)
A town of ancient Palestine north of Jerusalem. It is now a major archaeological site.


1. A hallowed or holy place.
a. A chapel for seafarers.
b. Chiefly British A Nonconformist chapel, especially a Baptist or Methodist one.

[Hebrew bêt 'ēl, house of God : bayit, house; see byt in Semitic roots + 'ēl, God; see ʔl in Semitic roots.]
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.


1. (Placename) an ancient town in the West Bank, near Jerusalem: in the Old Testament, the place where the dream of Jacob occurred (Genesis 28:19)
2. (Christian Churches, other) a chapel of any of certain Nonconformist Christian sects
3. (Nautical Terms) a seamen's chapel
[C17: from Hebrew bēth 'Ēl house of God]
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014


(ˈbɛθ əl)

1. a sacred area or sanctuary. Gen. 28:19.
2. a church or hostel for sailors.
[1610–20; < Hebrew bēth 'ēl house of God]


(ˈbɛθ əl, -ɛl, ˌbɛθˈɛl)

a village in W Jordan, near Jerusalem; dream of Jacob. Gen. 28:19.
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.bethel - a house of worship (especially one for sailors)bethel - a house of worship (especially one for sailors)
house of God, house of prayer, house of worship, place of worship - any building where congregations gather for prayer
Based on WordNet 3.0, Farlex clipart collection. © 2003-2012 Princeton University, Farlex Inc.
References in classic literature ?
'I know who has been putting that in your head,' rejoined her son disconsolately; 'that's Little Bethel again.
With more kisses, and hugs, and tears, than many young gentlemen who start upon their travels, and leave well-stocked homes behind them, would deem within the bounds of probability (if matter so low could be herein set down), Kit left the house at an early hour next morning, and set out to walk to Finchley; feeling a sufficient pride in his appearance to have warranted his excommunication from Little Bethel from that time forth, if he had ever been one of that mournful congregation.
Thompson's "Land and the Book." They have spoken often, in happily worded language which never varied, of how they mean to lay their weary heads upon a stone at Bethel, as Jacob did, and close their dim eyes, and dream, perchance, of angels descending out of heaven on a ladder.
Should I of these the liberty regard, Who, freed, as to their ancient patrimony, Unhumbled, unrepentant, unreformed, Headlong would follow, and to their gods perhaps Of Bethel and of Dan?
Nor did ISRAEL scape Th' infection when their borrow'd Gold compos'd The Calf in OREB: and the Rebel King Doubl'd that sin in BETHEL and in DAN, Lik'ning his Maker to the Grazed Ox, JEHOVAH, who in one Night when he pass'd From EGYPT marching, equal'd with one stroke Both her first born and all her bleating Gods.
'"Cook, housemaid, and nursemaid; each female servant required to join the Little Bethel Congregation three times every Sunday--with a serious footman.
The Guru Nanak Gurdwara in Willenhall and the Bethel Convention Centre in West Bromwich are preparing to run their annual events to bring people together in worship.
The village of Schaumburg is pleased to announce the Bethel Lane Relocation Project has been awarded several accolades from the American Public Works Association.
The Bethel Woods Center for the Arts announced a three-day festival of "music, culture and community" that will celebrate "the golden anniversary at the historic site of the 1969 Woodstock festival."
A state of emergency was declared in Bethel Park, Pennsylvania, after extreme flooding slammed the area Wednesday.&nbsp;Several instances of building collapse and people getting trapped on flooded roads&nbsp;were reported as heavy rains lashed the region.