ambry

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English[edit]

Alternative forms[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From Anglo-Norman almarie, aumer, etc., from Old French almarie, from Latin armārium.

Pronunciation[edit]

Noun[edit]

ambry (plural ambries)

  1. (now historical, rare) A bookcase; a library or archive. [from 13th c.]
    • 1485, Sir Thomas Malory, Le Morte Darthur, Book XVII:
      And all thys was made in grete bookes, and put up in almeryes at Salysbury.
    • 2006, Ernest A Savage, Old English Libraries, p. 97:
      This collection, then, was the college reference library; corresponding with the common aumbry of the monastery, but also indicative of the principle of all library organisation [...].
  2. (obsolete) A storehouse. (Especially a niche or recess in a wall used for storage.)
    • 1767, Patrick Sanderson, The antiquities of the abbey or cathedral church of Durham. Also a particular description of the county palatine of Durham, compiled from the best authorities and original manuscripts. [] [1], Durham: printed by J. White and T. Saint, for P. Sanderson, page 75:
      In the closets or almeries on each side of the Frater-house door in the Cloisters, Towels were kept white and clean to dry their Hands upon.
    • 1767, Patrick Sanderson, The antiquities of the abbey or cathedral church of Durham. Also a particular description of the county palatine of Durham, compiled from the best authorities and original manuscripts. [] [2], Durham: printed by J. White and T. Saint, for P. Sanderson, page 72:
      Within the Frater-house Door, on the Left Hand at entering, is a strong Almery in the Wall, wherein a great Mazer, called the Grace Cup, stood, which every Day served the Monks after grace, to drink out of round the Table; which cup was finely edged about with Silver, and double gilt.
  3. (now rare) A pantry, or place to store food. [from 14th c.]
    • 2004, Mary Ellen Snodgrass, Encyclopedia of Kitchen History, p. 128:
      Used by a wholesaler or retailer as a wine cabinet, the ambry cupboard suited the needs of a neighborhood inn or small-scale private kitchen.
  4. (architecture) A cupboard or storage area in a church to hold books, communion vessels, vestments, etc.; an armarium. [from 16th c.]
    • 1787, William Hutchinson, The History and Antiquities of the County Palatine of Durham, vol. II, p. 64:
      At the end of the bench adjoining to the Frater-house door, was a fine almery fixed to the wall, and another on the other side of the door [...].
    • 1983, Dennis G Michno, A Priest's Handbook, Morehouse 1998, p. 75:
      Nothing else should be kept in the tabernacle or aumbry where the Sacrament is reserved, but a small container of water and a cloth may be kept on the shelf for cleansing one's fingers.
    • 2003, Wm. B. Eerdmans, translating Erwin Fahlbusch et al., The Encylopedia of Christianity, vol. III, p. 321:
      Portions of the consecrated bread from the Eucharist were stored or reserved in an ambry or tabernacle to be taken to the sick.

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Anagrams[edit]