Vocabularium

*Bailiwick

the administrative unit of the English Province of the Templars,comprising a region, shire or group of villages

*Lavatorium

or laver,a washing place or basin in the cloister or infirmary supplied with piped water and distinguished architecturally due to its ritual significance

Abbess

the spiritual and administrative head of an abbey of nuns, elected by the community or nominated by the founding family of the house

Ad succurrendum

nun or monk: a person who took the habit in old age or illness to be cared for at a monastery until death

Advocate

person designated protector of a monastary

Alien priory

monastic cells owned by mother houses in France. In 1414 they were confiscated by the Crown, as enemy assets, pending a cessation of hostilities between England and France. After 1414 most were farmed out to individuals or to other monastic houses

Almoner

monastic official who dispensed a monastery's almsgiving

Almshouse

hospitals of the 12th to 14th centuries founded in order to shelter the aged or infirm, or hospitals of the 15th to 16th centuries which acted as residential homes for the poor

Alod

freehold land

Anchoress

woman living as an enclosed hermitess

Anchorite

man living as an enclosed hermit; also used for a woman instead of anchoress

Apse

the semicircular termination of the chancel, aisle or transept

Arcade

a series of arches supported on piers

Armarium

monastic library

Arpent

roughly an acre of land

Ascetic

the practice of self-denial as a way of religious life; from the Greek asketikos, meaning laborious

Assart

to form private farmland out of common land

Aumbries

recesses or cupboards used to hold sacred vessels

Bay

a unit of a building marked by vaulting or roof compartments

Bedesman/bedeswoman

the resident poor of almshouses

Beguinage

unenclosed communities of religious women common in the Low Countries from the 13th century. Originally, they supported themselves and their charitable activities by working or begging for alms

Camera

a term meaning either a subordinate chamber or suite within a medieval building, or, as it was used by the Military Orders, to refer to specialized farms or holdings without a resident preceptor

Canons regular

ordained canons living in community under a Rule, such as the Augustinian, Gilbertine or Premonstratensian. Historians use the tem beguinage to describe any informal or spontaneously founded community of religious women; some historians make a distinction between the Beguines as an Order and lay-religious or semi-monastic women in general. Georgraphically the terms beguine and beguinage (as just defined) are associated with the Low Countires, northern France and the Rhine Valley. Related or synonymous terms for beguinage include: maison, maison dieu, couvent, hopital, Beguinenhaus and begignhuis, grand beguinage, beguinenhof and begijnhof (Delmaire 1989: 126). Related words for semi-religious women in other regions of Europe include: pinzochera, bizoke, mantellata, papallarda

Cartulary

a book of collected documents usually dealing with legal and economic transactions of a monastery

Cellarage

the ground-floor space of a two-storey structure, generally vaulted

Cellaress

monastic official who procured and oversaw a monastery's food supplies

Cenobitic

a monastic vocation in which religious lived as part of an organized community; from the Greek koinobio~n, meaning community

Cens

annual rent on property paid by a landholder to a landowner

Chantress

monastic official in charge of choral service and production of books

Chantry

a mass for the dead, believed to hasten the passage of the soul through Purgatory

Chemin de ronde

a corbelled-out and crenellated passage below the top of a round tower

Clerestory

the upper storey of the nave above the aisle roof, pierced with windows to light the central body of the church

Clerg

commandery: a monastery of the Military Orders; used particularly to refer to establishments of the Hospitallers

Cloistering

(passive) barring of nonmonastics from the house; (active) prohibition of monastics from exiting the house

Close

an open space enclosed on two or more sides by buildings and serving as a central area

Cob

clay mixed with sand, straw or gravel

College

a community of secular clergy

Computation

periodic, formal accounting by a monastery's leaders

Confraternity

union of prayer and privileges between individuals and monasteries or between monasteries (also called societas)

Convent

a monastic community of men or women

Conversa (-ae)

lay sister

Conversus(i)

lay brother

Corrodian

lay people who paid, or were sponsored, to lodge in private accommodation within a monastic precinct. Often this arrangement was permanent and served as a form of pension

Corvee

work days owed by a peasant to a lord or lordship

Cura monialium

overseeing of and clerical support for a nunnery by male clergy

Curtilage

a piece of ground within the limits or boundary of a property

Decana (-ae)

monastic official who served as vice abbess

Dedication

Dedication refers to the saint or saints to which a community is dedicated. Often communties, especially the many dedicated to the Virgin Mary, were commonly referred to by other names. However, the dedication is noted in the foundation document and usually other official documents generated or addressed to the community. The holy person or persons to which a community is dedicated often plays a prominent role in the iconography of works of art produced for or by a community. (author: k gill)

Demesne

land owned and administered directly by a monastery; in the case of a secular estate, the portion of land reserved for the lord's own use

Desert fathers

hermits of the 3rd and 4th century who withdrew to the deserts of Egypt, Palestine and Syria

Diocesan

bishop of a diocese

Documents of practice

pragmatic legal, economic, and institutional records that reflect the world as it was

Documents of theory

prescriptive and hortatory records that show the world as the writer thought it should be

Donationes altaris

parishioners' offerings to priest who performed sacraments and officiated on feast days

Double monestary

a monastery which consisted of separate communities of religious men and women, generally presided over by the abbess

Dowry

for monastics,entry gift given monastery when a nun or monk joined an order

Eremitic

a monastic vocation in which individuals withdrew from the world to live as solitary religious; from the Greek eremos, meaning desert

Exemption

freedom for a monastery from episcopal control and oversight

Familia

Group of people who answered to a monastery's orders and depended on it for their livelihood

Filiation

the act of belonging to a particular monastic order, such as the Cistercian

Geometric tracery

dating to the second half of the l4th century, and consisting of simple symmetrical shapes such as circles and trefoils

Gradual

hymn sung between the reading of the Epistle and the Gospel

Grange

farms or subsidiary residences of a monastery

Hagiography

writing of saints' lives

Hermit

individuals following a religious vocation which involved isolation and the practice of asceticism

Hospes (-itis)

free peasant

Hospice

a hospital established primarily in order to provide hospitality for travellers and pilgrims

Indulgence

remission of punishment granted a penitent for acts such as going on crusade or on pilgrimage

Infirmarian

monastic official in charge of the infirmary

Intercessory

prayers made on behalf of the soul of another

Keel moulding

a carved moulding with a sharp edge, resembling the keel of a ship

King-post

the vertical member of an internal roof structure placed on the center of a tie-beam to carry the ridge

Lavra (recluse)

a community of hermits or recluses and their cells

Lectio divina

monastics' regular daily reading and meditation on sacred texts

Leprosaria

a hospital dedicated to the care of lepers, where the administrators and caretakers live a semi-religious kind of life; the structure of the lepers' life in such an institution was also designed according to a semi-monastic plan or vision

Lus patronatus

right to name a priest to a benefice

Mandatum

ceremony of washing the feet of twelve people in memory of Christ's washing his apostles' feet

Manor

a unit of lordship in which land is divided between that of the lord (demesne) and that held by tenants, for which cash rents and labour services were owed to the lord

Martvrology

calendar of saints' feast days,to which were added the death dates of people to be remembered in monastics' daily prayers

Misericordia

from the Latin misericordia, meaning pity or mercy. The term is used to refer either to the meat-kitchen of the monastic infirmary, where a special diet was prepared for the infirm, or for the hinged seats in the stalls of the monastic choir, which were provided in order to support the nuns or monks in their long religious offices

Monastery

Monastic Houses,a community or house of a religious order or congregation

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Novice

woman or man who has entered a monastery but has not yet taken final vows

Obedience

small, dependent monastic community with fewer than eight monastics

Obedientaries

the officers of a monastic house who held special responsibility for a particular area or function, such as the cellarer, sacristan, infirmarer and hosteller

Obits

religious services conducted on the anniversary of a death

Oblation

offering oneself or a child to serve God as a nun or monk

Opus Dei

divine offices, or the hours; eight services of prayers and psalms celebrated throughout each day by nuns and monks

Ordinary

bishop with ordinary jurisdiction over a diocese

Panchart

document containing a collection of related documents

Patristic

a term referring to the church fathers or their writings

Penitetial

the religious expression of poverty and self-denial as repentance for sin

Pentice

a passage way along the side of a building formed by a single-pitch roof supported on corbels

Phlebotomy

the letting or taking of blood, carried out in the belief that regular blood-letting was necessary to maintain good health

Pinzochera

the vernacular Italian word for an uncloistered religious woman; see beguinage and beguine

Piscina

a ritual basin set generally in the south wall of a church or chapel adjacent to an altar, in which communion vessels were washed and holy water was disposed

Pittance

extra serving of food,money, or wine, received by each monastic to celebrate a festive occasion

Preceptor

the resident knight or sergeant in charge of a preceptory of the Military Orders. preceptory a monastery of the Military Orders; used particularly to refer to establishments of the Templars

Prioress

the spiritual and administrative head of a priory of nuns, elected by the community or nominated by the founding family of the monastery

Procuration

customary fee paid by a monastery to the official visitor

Pulpitum

the stone or wooden screen that divided the west end of the monastic choir from the ritual nave

Regular clergy

ecclesiastics who follow a rule

Reredorter

a name sometimes given to the latrines attached to monastic houses

Rogation Days

three days before Ascension Day

Rotulus (-i)

monastic chain-letter scroll, circulated among religious institutions to announce the death of an abbess or abbot

Sacristan

monastic official with responsibility for care of altar and vestments and care and repair of church

Sacristy

a room attached to the church in which communion vessels, and altar furnishings and other valuables were stored

Secular clergy

ecclesiastics who take holy orders but do not follow a rule

Sedilia (sing. sedile)

a series of seats for the clergy placed on the south side of the chancel

Sester

measure of grain

Taille

an arbitrary seigneurial levy on serfs

Tithe

tax assessment of one-tenth income due to local parish

Titulus (tituli)

the administrative unit of the English Province of the Hospitallers, based on a region with a preceptory at its centre

Toft

the site of a house and its outbuildings; from the Latin tofta

Triforium

a band of arcading sometimes incorporating a wall passage, above the main arcade and below the clerestory of a church

Visitor

cleric who makes periodic official visitations to secular and regular clergy in his diocese

Vowess

a widow who took vows to live an unenclosed, celibate religious life