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n. pl. chan·tries Ecclesiastical
1. An endowment to cover expenses for the saying of masses and prayers, usually for the soul of the founder of the endowment.
2. An altar or chapel endowed for the saying of such masses and prayers.
[Middle English chanterie, from Old French, from chanter, to sing; see chant.]
n, pl -tries
1. (Ecclesiastical Terms) an endowment for the singing of Masses for the soul of the founder or others designated by him or her
2. (Ecclesiastical Terms) a chapel or altar so endowed
3. (Ecclesiastical Terms) (as modifier): a chantry priest.
[C14: from Old French chanterie, from chanter to sing; see chant]
chan•try(ˈtʃæn tri, ˈtʃɑn-)
n., pl. -tries.
1. an endowment for the singing or saying of mass for the souls of the founders or of persons named by them.
2. a chapel or the like so endowed.
Chantrya body of priests who say masses for the dead in a chantry chapel.
Example: chantry of priests, 1775.
A small self-contained chapel, usually inside but sometimes outside a medieval church, financially endowed by the founder so that regular masses could be said for the repose of his or her soul.