Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A room in a monastery set aside for the copying, writing, or illuminating of manuscripts and records.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A room set aside for the copying, writing, or illuminating of manuscripts and records, especially such a room in a monastery.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. In an abbey or monastery, the room set apart for writing or copying manuscripts; in general, a room devoted to writing.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A writing-room; specifically, the room set apart in a monastery or an abbey for the writing or copying of manuscripts.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. a room in a monastery that is set aside for writing or copying manuscripts

Etymologies

Medieval Latin scrīptōrium, from Latin scrīptus, past participle of scrībere, to write; see skrībh- in Indo-European roots.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Medieval Latin scriptōrium, from Latin scriptōrius ("pertaining to writing"). (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • This den -- he spoke of it as his 'scriptorium' -- had a window looking out upon an elevated railway, along which the trains of the London, Chatham, and Dover line banged and rattled all day long.

    Shining Ferry

  • The scriptorium was a great writing school too, and the rules of the art of writing which were laid down there were so rigidly and severely adhered to, that to this day it is difficult to decide at a glance whether a book was written in St. Alban's or St. Edmund's Abbey.

    The Quarterly Review, Volume 162, No. 324, April, 1886

  • Sometimes the scriptorium was a large hall or studio, with various desks about; sometimes the North walk of the cloister was divided into little cells, called "carrels," in each of which was room for the writer, his desk, and a little shelf for his inks and colours.

    Arts and Crafts in the Middle Ages A Description of Mediaeval Workmanship in Several of the Departments of Applied Art, Together with Some Account of Special Artisans in the Early Renaissance

  • Usually, however, they had a large common room called the scriptorium, where either the copyist and illuminator worked separately and each on his own account, or where a number of copyists awaited with pen and parchment the dictation by one of the fraternity of some work of which a number of copies had to be made.

    Illuminated Manuscripts

  • Among the finds he made were water pools, which he believed were used for ritual bathing, and multiple inkwells found in a room that became known as the "scriptorium."

    Yahoo! News: Business - Opinion

  • In each monastery there was a special hall, called the "scriptorium", reserved for the labours of the copyists.

    The Catholic Encyclopedia, Volume 9: Laprade-Mass Liturgy

  • While explanatory texts are frustratingly short and few, photographs showing the white-robed monks serving meals in the unadorned white-walled refectory, studying in the book-lined scriptorium and making mustard and face cream in their new workhouse convey better than any script the fullness of experience possible in even the sparest settings.

    The Pared Minimum

  • Something attacks the remote Siberian Saint Samuil of Arkady monastery that contains in its scriptorium books written by the Users; every resident except Va the monk dies in the assault; the reference tomes are stolen.

    The Lost Art-Simon Morden « The Merry Genre Go Round Reviews

  • He was no longer a weary monk accustomed to bending over a wooden scriptorium.

    HITLER’S HOLY RELICS

  • One surviving text from the community — a collection of vernacular sermons by the Dominican preacher Johannes Tauler — originated in the Adelhausen scriptorium in the 1350s. 39 The manuscript itself is worn and stained, indicating some usage and possible damage in the 1410 fire.

    Sensual Encounters: Monastic Women and Spirituality in Medieval Germany

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