Cenacle Definition and Meaning

Before proceeding to determine the meaning of the term at hand, we must know its etymological origin. Specifically, we can establish that it derives from Latin, specifically from the word “cenaculum”, which can be translated as “dining room”.

The idea of ​​a cenacle refers to the site where the last supper that Jesus Christ and his disciples shared took place. It is a space that is located in the city of Jerusalem, where the apostles continued to meet after the resurrection of Christ according to Christian beliefs.

In the time of Jesus Christ, the upper room in question was a two-story building owned by one of his friends. The ground floor was used for prayer, while the upper floor was for eating.

This cenacle became an important meeting point for Christians. Over time a church was built on the site, also with two floors. The lower sector, known as “David’s Tomb”, is a site of worship for Christians, Muslims and Jews. The room upstairs is specifically known as the Cenacle.

Other interesting information about this cenacle are the following:
-It is considered that this room was part of a house that belonged to a friend of Jesus.
-Also responds to the name of upper room.
-Various are the paintings that, over the centuries, have tried to represent that Upper Room that hosted the Last Supper of Jesus. However, perhaps one of the best known is the one entitled “The Last Supper.” It is of the mural type and was made between 1495 and 1498 by the great artist Leonardo Da Vinci. It is a painting that is declared a World Heritage Site and is currently in the refectory of the Dominican convent of Santa Maria delle Grazie, in Milan. It measures about 880 centimeters wide and about 460 centimeters high.
-Nowadays, in the mentioned cenacle, what is Muslim worship is prohibited. What’s more, the Israeli authorities have declared it a synagogue of the tomb of David.

Beyond the specific place where the Last Supper of Jesus Christ took place, in Roman times the room of a house where the family met to eat was called a cenacle. The cenacle, in this sense, was an informal dining room, usually located on the upper floor. At times it was also used as a slave accommodation. On the ground floor, on the other hand, visitors were received and different meetings were held, including formal meals.

The second meaning of the concept mentioned in the dictionary of the DigoPaul refers to a meeting in which few individuals participate, who come together for professional, ideological or other reasons. For example: “I have no intention of liking the members of the Cenacle”, “Someday the investigations of the Cenacle will come to light”, “The Cenacle that governs this country will never think of the people.

In addition to all the above, we can underline that within the field of literature the term that concerns us has been used on more than one occasion to title the different works. An example of these is “The Cenacle of Blood”, written by Jesús Paguillo Palacios.


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