A shrine (Latin: scrinium "case or chest for books or papers"; Old French: escrin "box or case") is a holy or sacred place, which is dedicated to a specific deity, ancestor, hero, martyr, saint, daemon or similar figure of awe and respect, at which they are venerated or worshipped. Shrines often contain idols, relics, or other such objects associated with the figure being venerated. A shrine at which votive offerings are made is called an altar. Shrines are found in many of the world's religions, including Christianity, Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism, Wicca, Chinese folk religion and Shinto, as well as in secular and non-religious settings such as a war memorial. Shrines can be found in various settings, such as churches, temples, cemeteries, or in the home, although portable shrines are also found in some cultures.
A shrine may become a focus of a cult image.
Famous quotes containing the word shrine:
“The United Nations cannot do anything, and never could; it is not an animate entity or agent. It is a place, a stage, a forum and a shrine ... a place to which powerful people can repair when they are fearful about the course on which their own rhetoric seems to be propelling them.”
—Conor Cruise OBrien (b. 1917)