Consistories
Consistory Con*sis"to*ry (? or ?; 277) n.; pl. {Consistories}. [L. consistorium a place of assembly, the place where the emperor's council met, fr. consistere: cf. F. consistoire, It. consistorio. See {Consist}.] 1. Primarily, a place of standing or staying together; hence, any solemn assembly or council. [1913 Webster]

To council summons all his mighty peers, Within thick clouds and dark tenfold involved, A gloomy consistory. --Milton. [1913 Webster]

2. (Eng. Ch.) The spiritual court of a diocesan bishop held before his chancellor or commissioner in his cathedral church or elsewhere. --Hook. [1913 Webster]

3. (R. C. Ch.) An assembly of prelates; a session of the college of cardinals at Rome. [1913 Webster]

Pius was then hearing of causes in consistory. --Bacon. [1913 Webster]

4. A church tribunal or governing body. [1913 Webster]

Note: In some churches, as the Dutch Reformed in America, a consistory is composed of the minister and elders of an individual church, corresponding to a Presbyterian church session, and in others, as the Reformed church in France, it is composed of ministers and elders, corresponding to a presbytery. In some Lutheran countries it is a body of clerical and lay officers appointed by the sovereign to superintend ecclesiastical affairs. [1913 Webster]

5. A civil court of justice. [Obs.] --Chaucer. [1913 Webster]


The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

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