Cónventicle. n.s. [conventiculum, Latin.]
- An assembly; a meeting.
They are commanded to abstain from all conventicles of men whatsoever; even out of the church, to have nothing to do with publick business. Ayliffe's Parergon.
- An assembly for worship. Generally used in an ill sense, including heresy or schism.
It behoveth, that the place where God shall be served by the whole church be a publick place, for the avoiding of privy conventicles, which, covered with pretence of religion, may serve unto dangerous practices. Hooker, b. v. sect. 12.
A sort of men, who are content to be stiled of the church of England, who perhaps attend its service in the morning, and go with their wives to a conventicle in the afternoon. Swift.
- A secret assembly; an assembly where conspiracies are formed.
Ay, all of you have laid your heads together,
(Myself had notice of your conventicles)
And all to make away my guiltless life. Shakesp. Henry VI.