A rector is a clergyman who has the charge or cure of a parish church. During the middle ages some rectories were appropriated to monasteries. In these cases, the place of the rector was supplied by another clergyman who was allowed the ‘small’ tithes of the parish for his maintenance and was called the vicar. After the dissolution of the monasteries many impropriate rectories along with the ‘great’ tithes of the parish became the property of laymen, who were known as ‘lay rectors’.