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Cloister

 

A covered walkway surrounding an open-air courtyard (small area of grass or garden). It is one of the places where the monks encounter God in silent prayer. The cloister connects the various parts of the monastery: church, chapter house, refectory, etc. We have two cloisters at Solesmes: the small cloister dating from the Maurist priory and the large cloister built by Dom Bellot. The word can also be used to refer to the whole monastery as an enclosed entity protecting the monks from the distractions of the outside world.