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See also: Abbey


See also the 1911 Encyclopædia Britannica's article on:



From A.D. 1250 in Middle English as abbeye(convent headed by an abbot) (compare archaic English abbaye), itself a borrowing from Old French abaïe, abbaïe, abeïe, abbeïe (Modern French abbaye) from Late Latin or Ecclesiastical Latin abbātia, from Classical Latin abbās(abbot). See abbot.

Ruins of an abbey


abbey ‎(plural abbeys)

  1. The office or dominion of an abbot or abbess. [First attested around 1150 to 1350.][1]
  2. A monastery or society of people, secluded from the world and devoted to religion and celibacy, which is headed by an abbot or abbess; also, the monastic building or buildings. [First attested around 1150 to 1350.][1]
    From 1199 to 1203 William Punchard was the abbot of the abbey of Rievaulx, which was part of the Cistercian order of monks.
  3. The church of a monastery. [First attested around 1150 to 1350.][1]
  4. (Britain) A residence that was previously an abbatial building.[2][Mid 16th century.][1]

Related terms[edit]


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See also[edit]


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 Lesley Brown (editor), The Shorter Oxford English Dictionary, 5th edition (Oxford University Press, 2003 [1933], ISBN 978-0198605751), page 3
  2. ^ Laurence Urdang (editor), The Random House College Dictionary (Random House, 1984 [1975], ISBN 0-394-43600-8), page 1