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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