General Question

ava's avatar

What is the difference between a Monestary and a Cloister?

Asked by ava (977points) June 20th, 2007

I was just wondering (while playing Carcasonne).

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3 Answers

elliottcable's avatar

As I understand it, the monastery is the entire place, and the cloister is just like the most holy place or something. These links may help inform you:

bpeoples's avatar

It's complicated =) At least according to the wikipedia stuff, a Cloister is an enclosed garden (bounded by a covered walkway all around, and a Monastery is the entire complex (and in Catholicism implies a community of men, rather than women).

There's also "Cloistered" which means the monk/nun doesn't interact with the outside world, which can lead to the confusion-- "Cloister" being an architectural element of a Monestary in which a monk could be Cloistered. (I hadn't realized that a Cloister wasn't a nunnery for Cloistered nuns...)

elliottcable's avatar

Isn't it awesome how even the answers can learn stuff from the question on fluther? d-:

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