mon·as·tery | \ˈmä-nə-ˌster-ē \
plural monasteries

Definition of monastery 

: a house for persons under religious vows especially : an establishment for monks

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Synonyms for monastery


abbey, cloister, friary, hermitage, priory

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Examples of monastery in a Sentence

Gregory Mendel worked out his concepts of genetics by doing breeding experiments using pea plants in the monastery's garden.

Recent Examples on the Web

The prerequisite miracles ensued and in short order a chapel had been built, followed by the construction of a Benedictine monastery in 976. Smithsonian, "Explore Catalonia’s Most Beautiful Nature Parks," 15 June 2018 From alpine Alto Adige, Muri-Gries, housed in an ancient but still functioning Benedictine monastery, makes a richer style of silvaner, more textured yet clean and vibrant with aromas and flavors of apricots, herbs and flowers. Eric Asimov, New York Times, "Silvaner, a Lovely yet Unloved Spring Wine, Needs Friends," 10 May 2018 This restored Benedictine monastery was destroyed in WWII; today, its ornate basilica attracts crowds of pilgrims. Katie Parla, Condé Nast Traveler, "Road Trip: 4 Days on Italy's Backroads, from Rome to Naples," 6 Feb. 2018 It was created by scribes in a scriptorium in Wales under Jackson’s artistic direction, and is the first monumental, illuminated Bible commissioned by a Benedictine monastery in the modern era. Thomas Saccente, The Seattle Times, "Faiths celebrate St. John’s Bible at Arkansas hospital," 13 Jan. 2018 Dozens of islands lie beyond the tourist hubs, comprising ancient fishing villages, private villas, rich archaeological sites, vineyards and, on one speck of dry land, an Armenian monastery. Patrick Rogers, Town & Country, "Exploring Venice's Exclusive Private Islands," 12 Mar. 2018 Call the monastery at 262-638-2838 for scenic tower conditions. Amber Storm, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Hiking at Holy Hill: An autumn kidventure," 9 Oct. 2017 Monastero Santa Rosa is a 17th-century monastery that underwent a painstaking and dramatic restoration over several years. Town & Country, "These Are the 83 Top Hotels Around the World," 6 Oct. 2016 Villa San Michele was built in the 15th century as a monastery for the Franciscan order of monks. Town & Country, "These Are the 83 Top Hotels Around the World," 6 Oct. 2016

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'monastery.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of monastery

15th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for monastery

Middle English monasterie, from Late Latin monasterium, from Late Greek monastērion, from Greek, hermit's cell, from monazein to live alone, from monos single — more at monk

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Statistics for monastery

Last Updated

18 Oct 2018

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Time Traveler for monastery

The first known use of monastery was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for monastery



English Language Learners Definition of monastery

: a place where monks live and work together


mon·as·tery | \ˈmä-nə-ˌster-ē \
plural monasteries

Kids Definition of monastery

: a place where a community of monks lives and works

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Comments on monastery

What made you want to look up monastery? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


lying above or upon

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