re·​fec·​to·​ry | \ ri-ˈfek-t(ə-)rē How to pronounce refectory (audio) \
plural refectories

Definition of refectory

: a dining hall (as in a monastery or college)

Examples of refectory in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The loss of the refectory two years ago created an opportunity, as unfortunate as that fire was, to take a leap forward with the long-term vision for Bde Maka Ska, instead of making this congested area even more congested. Star Tribune, 16 May 2021 We were seated at a standard four-top, but the massive refectory tables that ran the length of the hall could have accommodated fifty people each. Michael Deagler, Harper's Magazine, 27 Oct. 2020 The brothers needed dining chairs for their refectory. Sarah Medford, WSJ, 9 Oct. 2020 Cardinal Lajolo added that especially after the scare in Santa Marta, the pope no longer ate in the refectory with the other priests. Jason Horowitz, New York Times, 27 Mar. 2020 Returned to the refectory, the painting sustained slight damage during the momentous flooding of Florence in 1966 but escaped largely unscathed. Meilan Solly, Smithsonian, 21 Oct. 2019 The Florentine monastery of Santa Maria Novella acquired the painting in 1817, housing it in the refectory before moving it to a new location around 1865. Meilan Solly, Smithsonian, 21 Oct. 2019 The antique refectory of Tupay has exquisitely prepared and presented dinners featuring international dishes; a buffet breakfast with a view of the main patio is served at Illariy. Alice Newell-hanson, Condé Nast Traveler, 29 Mar. 2018 The restaurant has the feel of a refectory, but the dinners are great. Geoff Dyer, GQ, 5 Feb. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'refectory.' 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 refectory

15th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for refectory

Middle English, from Anglo-French refectorie, from Late Latin refectorium, from Latin reficere

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Time Traveler for refectory

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

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Last Updated

28 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Refectory.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 19 Jun. 2021.

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English Language Learners Definition of refectory

: a large room where meals are served at a place (such as a seminary or monastery) where many people live


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