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noun 
  1. The set of apartments within which the cardinals of the Roman Catholic Church are continuously secluded while engaged in choosing a pope.
  2. The group of Roman Catholic cardinals locked in a conclave until they elect a new pope; the body of cardinals
It was said a cardinal, by reason of his apparent likelihood to step into St. Peter's chair, that in two conclaves he went in pope and came out again cardinal. — South?
  1. A private meeting; a close or secret assembly.
The verdicts pronounced by this conclave (Johnson's Club) on new books, were speedily known over all London. — William Macaulay
Etymology: French from conclave, a room that may be locked up; con- + clavis'' key. See clavicle


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