The title archimandrite (
It is also used purely as a
The term derives from the Greek: the first element from ἀρχι archi- meaning "highest" or from archon "ruler"; and the second root from μάνδρα mandra meaning "enclosure" or "corral", "pen" and denoting a "monastery" (compare the usage of "flock" for "congregation").
The title has been in common use since the 5th century, but is mentioned for the first time in a letter to
When the supervision of monasteries passed to another episcopal official—the Great