The head house of the order in England was Welbeck.
The French houses, twenty-one in number, formed a separate congregation, the head-house being in Paris.
The abbot of the head monastery was the superior-general of the whole institute; he nominated the superiors of the other monasteries; he was visitor and held periodical visitations at all of them; he exercised universal supervision, control and authority; and every year a general chapter was held at the head house.
The order spread widely in Sweden and Norway, and played a remarkable part in promoting culture and literature in Scandinavia; to this is to be attributed the fact that the head house at Vastein, by Lake Vetter, was not suppressed till 1595.
The first monastery and head house of the order was at Cerfroy near Soissons.