Quick Reference

1 The Ark which Noah built to preserve life during the Flood (q.v.).

2 The Ark of the Covenant, the most sacred religious symbol of the Hebrew people and believed to represent the Presence of God. It was in the form of a wooden rectangular box, overlaid with gold inside and out. According to the traditional accounts the Israelites carried the Ark from the time of the Exodus into the land of Canaan. In Solomon's Temple its home was the ‘Holy of Holies’, which the High Priest alone entered once a year. It was apparently captured when Jerusalem fell to the Babylonians c.586 bc and nothing is known of its later history.

The Christian Fathers interpreted the Ark of Noah as typifying the Church, the Ark of the Covenant as a symbol of the Lord.

Subjects: Biblical Studies.

Reference entries

See all related reference entries in Oxford Index »