Ark (?), n. [OE. ark, arke,
arche, AS. arc, earc, earce, fr. L.
arca, fr. arcere to inclose, keep off; akin to Gr. ? to
keep off.] 1. A chest, or coffer. [Obs.]
Bearing that precious relic in an ark.
2. (Jewish Hist.) The oblong chest of acacia
wood, overlaid with gold, which supported the mercy seat with its golden
cherubs, and occupied the most sacred place in the sanctuary. In it Moses
placed the two tables of stone containing the ten commandments. Called also
the Ark of the Covenant.
3. The large, chestlike vessel in which Noah and
his family were preserved during the Deluge. Gen. vi. Hence: Any
place of refuge.
4. A large flatboat used on Western American rivers
to transport produce to market.