Dormitory - Encyclopedia




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DORMITORY (Lat. dormitorium, a sleeping place), the name given in monasteries to the monks' sleeping apartment. Sometimes it formed one long room, but was more generally subdivided into as many cells or partitions as there were monks. It was generally placed on the first floor with a direct entrance into the church. The dormitories were sometimes of great length; the longest known, in the monastery of S. Michele in Bosco near Bologna (now suppressed), is said to have been over 400 ft. In some of the larger mansions of the Elizabethan period the space in the roof constitutes a long gallery, which in those days was occasionally utilized as a dormitory. The name "dormitory" is also applied to the large bedrooms with a number of beds, in schools and similar modern institutes.

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