Con*sis"to*ry . [L. consistorium a place of assembly, the place where the emperor's council met, fr. consistere: cf. F. consistoire, It. consistorio. See Consist.]


Primarily, a place of standing or staying together; hence, any solemn assembly or council.

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

2. Eng. Ch.

The spiritual court of a diocesan bishop held before his chancellor or commissioner in his cathedral church or elsewhere.


3. R. C. Ch.

An assembly of prelates; a session of the college of cardinals at Rome.

Pius was then hearing of causes in consistory. Bacon.


A church tribunal or governing body.

⇒ 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.


A civil court of justice.




© Webster 1913.

Con*sis"to*ry, a.

Of the nature of, or pertaining to, a consistory.

"To hold consistory session."



© Webster 1913.

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