Lake in Early Days of Monasticism on Mount Athos (1909) traces the development through three well-defined stages in the 9th and 10th centuries - (a) the hermit period, (b) the loose organization of hermits in lauras, (c) the stricter rule of the monastery, with definite buildings and fixed rules under an ii-youµevos or abbot.
The most famous monasteries are those on Mount Athos; in 1902 there were twenty lauras with many dependent houses and 7522 monks there, mainly.
In the Lauras the young monks lived a cenobitical life, but the elders a semi-eremitical one, each in his own hut within the precincts of the Laura, attending only the solemn church services.
The monasteries are of three kinds: cenobia proper, wherein full monastic common life, with personal poverty, is observed; others called idiorrhythmic, wherein the monks are allowed the use of their private means and lead a generally mitigated and free kind of monastic life; and the lauras, wherein the life is semi-eremitical.
How would you define lauras? Add your definition here.