CHANTRY (Fr. chanterie, from chanter, to sing; Med. Lat. cantuaria), a small chapel built out from a church, endowed in pre-Reformation times for the express purpose of maintaining priests for the chanting of masses for the soul of the founder or of some one named by him. It generally contained the tomb of the founder, and, as the officiator or mass-priest was often unconnected with the parochial clergy, had an entrance from the outside. The word passed through graduations of meaning. Its first sense was singing or chanting. Then it meant the endowment funds, next the priests, and then the church or chapel itself.
Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)