• synonyms


[skrip-tawr-ee-uh m, -tohr-]
noun, plural scrip·to·ri·ums, scrip·to·ri·a [skrip-tawr-ee-uh, -tohr-] /skrɪpˈtɔr i ə, -ˈtoʊr-/.
  1. a room, as in a monastery, library, or other institution, where manuscripts are stored, read, or copied.
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Origin of scriptorium

1765–75; < Medieval Latin scrīptōrium; see script, -tory2
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for scriptoria

Historical Examples

  • The scriptoria were manufactories of books and not centres of learning.

    Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th Edition, Volume 16, Slice 5


  • For much curious information about scriptoria and monastic libraries, see Maitlands Dark Ages, quoted above.

  • These two scriptoria were, at a later date, to become the nursery of English illumination.

  • Mention also is made elsewhere in dealing with monastic art of the usages of the scriptoria.

  • The scriptoria of the monasteries were the places where the transcribing and illuminating of MSS.

British Dictionary definitions for scriptoria


noun plural -riums or -ria (-rɪə)
  1. a room, esp in a monastery, set apart for the writing or copying of manuscripts
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Word Origin

from Medieval Latin
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 scriptoria



"writing room," 1774, from Late Latin scriptorium "place for writing," noun use of neuter of Latin scriptorius "pertaining to writing," from Latin scriptus, past participle of scribere "to write" (see script (n.)).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper