Last edited 02 Dec 2020



The term ‘manse’ refers to a house provided for a Christian minister, typically of the Scottish Presbyterian, Methodist, United Free Church or Church of Scotland. It is similar to a parsonage, vicarage or rectory in England. The building is maintained by the church and inhabited by the minister during tenure. Some of the rooms can be designated public and used to receive parishioners, others can be reserved for the minister and family.

Manse may also refer to a house formerly inhabited by a minister. However, some churches, such as the Church of Scotland sometimes require that a house is no longer referred to as ‘the manse’ when it is sold, but instead uses a name such as ‘the old manse’.

In the USA, manse may be used informally to refer to any person's house or home, and the word itself is derived from the Latin words ‘mansus’ meaning a farm or dwelling, and ‘manere’ ‎(to remain), from which the word ‘manor’ is derived and it is similar to the word ‘mansion’ referring to the dwelling of a landholder.

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