A Dictionary of the English Language/abbot
A′bbot. n. s. [in the lower Latin abbas, from אב father, which sense was still implied; so that the abbots were called patres, and abbesses matres monasterii. Thus Fortunatus to the abbot Paternus: Nominis officium jure, Paterne, geris.] The chief of a convent, or fellowship of canons. Of these, some in England were mitred, some not: those that were mitred, were exempted from the jurisdiction of the diocesan, having in themselves episcopal authority within their precincts, and being also lords of parliament. The other sort were subject to the diocesan in all spiritual government. Cowel.