In addition, many others are more likely to be familiar with the term in a religious reference.
On the Norfolk Broads or anywhere where sailboat masts need to be lowered quickly, these tabernacles are essential.
Even Norfolk Trading wherries had them housing the massive mast with 2.5 tonnes of lead counterbalancing the raising and lowering action.
The mystery behind this essential sailboat item is just how did such a completely unrelated definition get applied to the boat and the marine environment without any obvious connection whatsoever?
Here is the marine definition...
The reason why these mast supports are called tabernacles is open to interpretation and is really quite ambiguous.A sailboat mast tabernacle is a device used to house the mast with the ability to lower the mast and act as a hinge to permit this process.
The sailboat tabernacle design is subject to any individual boat and are made of metal mostly but can also be manufactured from wood.
The more formal definition refers to a religious site of worship which is transient in the fact that it may be a tent or a mobile hut, however, it can also be fixed.
It can refer to an ornamental locked box used for reserving communion hosts.
Its archaic definitions include a tent or dwelling pace and even a sanctuary for the Israelites during the Exodus.
Its worldly origins or derivations are from the Latin word tabernāculum meaning "tent" or "hut", which in ancient Roman religion was a ritual structure.