A landed estate or manor, or a group of manors, in charge of a knight of one of the medieval military orders, as the Knights of Malta or the Teutonic Knights; originally an in commendam benefice, i.e., one bestowed as a charge or trust. The order of Knights of Alcantara, c.1540, numbered 37 "Commanderies," with 53 castles and villages. Later, the pension attached to a commandership of a knightly order was termed commandery; also a conventual priory of a non-military religious order, or the buildings pertaining thereto.

New Catholic Dictionary

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