A chapelle ardente (Fr. "burning chapel") is a chapel or room in which the corpse of a sovereign or other exalted personage lies in state pending the funeral service. The name is in allusion to the many candles which are lighted round the catafalque. This custom is first chronicled as occurring at the obsequies of Dagobert I (602–638).
- This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain: Chisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). "Chapelle Ardente". Encyclopædia Britannica. 5 (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press. p. 851.
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