AskDefine | Define cloisters

User Contributed Dictionary



  1. Plural of cloister


  1. third-person singular of cloister

Extensive Definition

A cloister (from Latin claustrum) is a part of cathedral, monastic and abbey architecture. A cloister consists usually of four corridors, with a courtyard or garth in the middle. It is intended to be both covered from the rain, but open to the air. The attachment of a cloister to a Cathedral church usually indicates that it is (or was once) a monastic foundation.
Cloistered (or "Claustral") life is also another name for the life of a monk or nun in the enclosed religious orders; the modern English term enclosure is used in contemporary Catholic church law to mean cloistered, and cloister is sometimes used as a synonym for monastery.
In medieval times, cloisters served the primary function of quiet meditation or study gardens.
The worldwide biggest cloister (12000 m²) is in the Certosa di Padula in southern Italy.

See also


cloisters in Breton: Kloastr
cloisters in Catalan: Claustre
cloisters in Czech: Křížová chodba
cloisters in German: Kreuzgang
cloisters in Spanish: Claustro
cloisters in Esperanto: Klostro
cloisters in French: Cloître
cloisters in Galician: Claustro
cloisters in Italian: Chiostro
cloisters in Hebrew: קלויסטר
cloisters in Luxembourgish: Kräizgank
cloisters in Dutch: Kloostergang
cloisters in Japanese: 回廊
cloisters in Norwegian: Korsgang
cloisters in Polish: Krużganek
cloisters in Portuguese: Claustro
cloisters in Swedish: Korsgång
cloisters in Thai: ระเบียงคด
cloisters in Chinese: 回廊
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