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Catholic Dictionary




A monk or nun living as a member in a religious group or community. Cenobitical life was instituted in the East by St. Pachomius (290-346) and modified by St. Basil (329-79). The greatest development, fitting it to Western needs, came through St. Benedict's Rule. (Etym. Latin coenobium, monastery; from koinos, common + bios, life.)

See Also: HERMIT