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n. pl. con·sis·to·ries
a. Roman Catholic Church An assembly of cardinals presided over by the pope for the solemn promulgation of papal acts, such as the canonization of a saint.
b. A governing body of a local congregation in certain Reformed churches.
c. A court appointed to regulate ecclesiastical affairs in Lutheran state churches.
d. An Anglican diocesan court presided over by a bishop's chancellor or commissary.
2. The meeting of a consistory.
3. A council; a tribunal.
[Middle English consistorie, from Old French, from Latin cōnsistōrium, place of assembly, from cōnsistere, to stand together; see consist.]
con′sis·to′ri·al (kŏn′sĭ-stôr′ē-əl) adj.
n, pl -ries
1. (Ecclesiastical Terms) Church of England
a. the court of a diocese (other than Canterbury) administering ecclesiastical law
b. the area in a church where the consistory meets
2. (Roman Catholic Church) RC Church an assembly of the cardinals and the pope
3. (Protestantism) (in certain Reformed Churches) the governing body of a local congregation or church
4. archaic a council or assembly
[C14: from Old French consistorie, from Medieval Latin consistōrium ecclesiastical tribunal, ultimately from Latin consistere to stand still]
consistorial, ˌconsisˈtorian adj
con•sis•to•ry(kənˈsɪs tə ri)
n., pl. -ries.
1. any of various ecclesiastical councils or tribunals.
2. the place where such a body meets.
3. the meeting of any such body.
4. a solemn assembly of Roman Catholic cardinals summoned and presided over by the pope.
5. a bishop's court in the Anglican Church for dealing with ecclesiastical and spiritual questions.
6. the local governing board of certain Reform churches.
7. any assembly or council.
8. Obs. a council chamber.
[1275–1325; Middle English consistorie < Anglo-French < Late Latin consistōrium meeting place]
con•sis•to•ri•al (ˌkɒn sɪˈstɔr i əl, -ˈstoʊr-) con`sis•to′ri•an, adj.
Consistorya solemn council; a court; an ecclesiastical senate. See also conclave.
Examples: consistory of bishops, of martyrs, 1641; of saints, 1641; of senators, 1660.