Difference Between Similar Terms and Objects

Difference Between Abbey and Priory

Abbey vs Priory

Abbey and Priory are Christian monasteries. These two are synonymous terms and it is hard to make out a difference between the two. Both the Abbey and priory has its own importance in the Christian world. But still there are some slight differences between Abbey and priory.

First of all, what is Abbey? Abbey is a monastery or a group of monks and nuns who are very much devoted to celibacy and religion. The men inmates in abbey are called monks and women inmates are called nuns. The monks are under an Abbot and Nuns are under an abbess.

Priory is sometimes regarded as subordinate to Abbey. The prior is generally lower in rank than the Abbot. The monks and the nuns choose the Abbot or Abbess among themselves and later clarified by the Bishop of the Diocese. The prior and the prioress are chosen in two ways. One way is that the inmates themselves choose their leader and the other way is that the prior or the prioress is subject to the will of the abbot.

Both the Abbey and Priory has been founded by exact monastic order. An abbey is a monastery that should have not less than 12 monks. On the other hand, there are priories that do not speculate to the exact number of monks.

When talking of the etymology, abbey is taken from Latin abbatia and derived from Syriac abba that means father. Priory has been derived from Medieval Latin prioria that means monastery governed by a prior.

Summary

1. It is hard to make out a difference between Abbey and priory

2. Abbey is a monastery or a group of monks or nuns who are very much devoted to celibacy and religion. Priory is also a monastery that consists of monks and nuns.

3. The monks are under an Abbot and Nuns are under an abbess. A prior or a prioress heads the priory.

4. Priory is sometimes regarded as subordinate to Abbey.

5. Abbey is taken from Latin abbatia and derived from Syriac abbathat means father. Priory has been derived from Medieval Latin prioria that mans “monastery governed by a prior.

6. The monks and the nuns choose the Abbot or Abbess among themselves and later clarified by the Bishop of the Diocese. The prior and the prioress are chosen in two ways. One way is that the inmates themselves choose their leader and the other way is that the prior or the prioress is subject to the will of the abbot.


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2 Comments

  1. Um, your choice of words could be a bit better (outside of the grammatical faults, which I’m willing to overlook).

    The residents of a religious institution are called ‘inhabitants’ and not ‘inmates.’ They joined the community of their own free will, they were not (under most circumstances) incarcerated within it.

    It’s fun to imagine all sorts of horrible things that we’ve been so smart to undo, but in fact it wasn’t like that.

    Outrage is cheap; so are historically-informed superiority complexes.

    • Well said, but I think were not here to disect every bit of grammar or people’s selection of words, I fully understand what she or he was trying to say! and note some of us are not that skilled at English as we wish we were!

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