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noun, plural pri·o·ries.
  1. a religious house governed by a prior or prioress, often dependent upon an abbey.
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Origin of priory

1250–1300; Middle English priorie < Medieval Latin priōria. See prior2, -y3
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words

nunnery, cloister, convent, ministry, monastery, temple, priory, friary, house, abbey, lamasery, retreat, hermitage, cell, sanctuary, order, priorate

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British Dictionary definitions for priory


noun plural -ories
  1. a religious house governed by a prior, sometimes being subordinate to an abbey
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Word Origin

C13: from Medieval Latin priōria; see prior ²
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for priory


late 13c., from Anglo-French priorie (mid-13c.), from Medieval Latin prioria "monastery governed by a prior," from Latin prior (see prior (n.)).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper