Minster signified originally, as in the writings of Cassian, St. Athanasius, and Jerome, the cell of a solitary; but the word was extended by Eusebius to embrace the church or the abode of a religious community.
(1.) A church of regular canons.
(2.) A church formerly served by monks (in Germany the term Minster is still employed, and Marmoutier in Francemajus monasterium, or great minster).
(3.) A cathedral.
(4.) Many large churches, held by secular canons, were dignified by the title of minster.
(5.) Paris churches, in 960, were called minsters, and several retain the name. These were the original outposts of the Church, isolated stations of priests living under rule and in community, which in time became parishes.