A kind of detention cell or small prison at Durham used to punish monks. The offender might have had to sit in chains for up to a year. He would not be permitted to speak to or see anyone but the abbot, who let down food on a cord. At Ely, the equivalent place was called, appropriately, 'helle'.

Dictionary of Medieval Terms and Phrases. .

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  • -ling — Suffix which gives the sense of belonging or being connected with, e.g. hireling , or having a particular quality, e.g. in diminutives like foundling or halfling . Cf. Lynghouse …   Dictionary of Medieval Terms and Phrases

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