The superior of a priory, and next below an abbot in dignity.
a chief magistrate, as in the republic of Florence in the middle ages.
The Prior is the leader of the local community or house*. Known as the praepositus by St. Augustine, he is regarded in the Augustinian tradition as the "first among equals" with authority, along with his Council,* to make decisions in the name of the community. The Prior differs, for example, from an Abbot in the Benedictine tradition in the limits of his authority and his term of office.
In Benedictine monasteries, the second in command after the abbot; also a term for the head of a religious house that did not have the legal status of a monastery. (Lynch, Joseph H. The Medieval Church: A Brief History, 364) Related terms: Priory
assistant to the abbot, or chief of a small monastery (prioress in a nunnery).
An officer in a monastic order or religious house, sometimes next in rank below an abbot. [ 32
the head of a religious order; in an abbey the prior is next below the abbot
the deputy of an abbot in a major Benedictine institution; or the head of a lesser Benedictine house; or the head of any house in some orders
The head of a priory, a place next in rank below an abbey
The head or deputy head of a monastery. In the case of St. Michael's, the prior was the direct and immediate head of the community.
A prior is a monk who deputizes for the Abbot.