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[ri-fek-tuh-ree] /rɪˈfɛk tə ri/
noun, plural refectories.
a dining hall in a religious house, a college, or other institution.
Origin of refectory
1475-85; < Late Latin refectōrium, equivalent to Latin refec-, combining form of reficere to renew (see refect) + -tōrium -tory2 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for refectory
Historical Examples
  • He found the passages all deserted, the nuns being assembled in the refectory.

  • He would return to the refectory, as if relieved of some great crime.

  • He started to his feet as the priest, whom he had seen on the deck of the Excelsior, entered the church from the refectory.

  • The bell rang for supper, and they went down to the refectory.

    The Christian Hall Caine
  • She led him into the refectory, because Daniel Fagg was in the drawing room.

  • In church and in the refectory he kept his eyes away from him.

    The Christian Hall Caine
  • He wondered, when the dinner-hour approached, that there came to him no summons from the refectory.

    The Art of Illustration Charles Haddon Spurgeon
  • But if his reception in the refectory was chilling, his welcome in the courtyard was warm enough.

    The Christian Hall Caine
  • The others, yielding to their bolder spirit, followed after, and soon were wildly romping in the refectory.

    Sharing Her Crime May Agnes Fleming
  • South of the cloister-court was the refectory and other apartments.

British Dictionary definitions for refectory


/rɪˈfɛktərɪ; -trɪ/
noun (pl) -tories
a communal dining hall in a religious, academic, or other institution
Word Origin
C15: from Late Latin refectōrium, from Latin refectus refreshed
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for refectory

"dining hall," especially one in a monastery, early 15c., from Medieval Latin refectorium, from past participle stem of reficere "to remake, restore," from re- (see re-) + facere (see factitious).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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