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ABBEY, abbatia, is a society of religious persons, having an abbot or abbess to preside over them. Formerly some of the most considerable abbots and priors in England had seats and votes in the house of lords. The prior of St. John's of Jerusalem, was styled the first baron of England, in respect to the lay barons, but he was the last of the spiritual barons.

A Law Dictionary, Adapted to the Constitution and Laws of the United States. By John Bouvier. Published 1856.
References in classic literature ?
So the poor yeoman turned his feet away from the door of the nunnery, and left his master in the hands of the women.
Thrice he sounded it, but weakly and faintly, for his breath was fluttering through sickness and loss of strength; nevertheless, Little John heard it where he lay in the glade, and, with a heart all sick with dread, he came running and leaping toward the nunnery. Loudly he knocked at the door, and in a loud voice shouted for them to let him in, but the door was of massive oak, strongly barred, and studded with spikes, so they felt safe, and bade Little John begone.
The early gray of the coming morn was just beginning to lighten the black sky toward the eastward when Little John and six more of the band came rapidly across the open toward the nunnery. They saw no one, for the sisters were all hidden away from sight, having been frightened by Little John's words.
Thus died Robin Hood, at Kirklees Nunnery, in fair Yorkshire, with mercy in his heart toward those that had been his undoing; for thus he showed mercy for the erring and pity for the weak through all the time of his living
She was fond of giving alms to the poor, and was always dreaming of a nunnery, and once she burst into tears when she began talking to me about it.
She's been brought up practically in a nunnery. Her father's too absurd.
This is an easy walk through part of Gracedieu's ancient wood, under the Charnwood Forest Railway, along part of the Forest Line Canal and into the romantic ruins of Gracedieu Priory, a 13th Century nunnery, later a Tudor Mansion.
Chad Nunnery, president and owner of Composite Access Products (CAP), will discuss manhole covers as a new application for composite thermoset material in North America.
Zachary Ryan Nunnery Zachary Ryan Nunnery, 22, of Chicago, Illinois, unexpectedly passed away in his sleep on December 20, 2018.
Lizzie Nunnery's play weaves the viewpoints of four individuals: Hanna (Elinor Lawless is outstanding), the wife and mother in the shattered surroundings of her living room waiting for news of her pacifist husband, Frank (a superb Gerard Kearns).
I'd rather get me to a nunnery. Because a new survey suggests online dating could just land me with The One who thinks two women on the go at once is OK.