Greek: koinos, common; bios, life

A monk who forms one of a religious community, as distinguished from a hermit or anchorite, one who leads a solitary or eremitical life. The cenobitical type of monasticism was instituted by Saint Pachomius in the East, c.318, and, considerably modified by Saint Basil the Great, gradually replaced the eremitical. Its introduction into the West dates from the visit to Rome of Saint Athanasius of Alexandria, c.340. The greatest development, adapting it to Western needs, came through Saint Benedict‘s Rule. See also