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

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 Mongolia, Millennial monks are running the country’s monasteries. Staff, The Christian Science Monitor, "Meanwhile in ... Mongolia, Millennial monks are running the country’s monasteries," 21 June 2018 Fanciful or not, preliminary results from the stain sleuths support the notion that these volumes were heavily used tools of their trades and not just pretty objects on a monastery shelf. Tom Avril,, "Scans reveal secrets of medieval 'Harry Potter' book and medical texts at Penn," 14 May 2018 As far as Armenian rites of passage go, ritualistic toasting and feasting are up there with dancing the Kochari and praying at Geghard monastery. Benjamin Kemper, Smithsonian, "Raising a Glass to Armenia’s Elaborate Toasting Tradition," 13 July 2018 Their presence undercuts a Thai sense of nationhood that is girded by a triumvirate of institutions: the military, the monarchy and the Buddhist monastery. Hannah Beech, The Seattle Times, "For some Thai soccer-team members, cave ordeal was only their latest test," 10 July 2018

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

4 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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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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