was a subdivision of an ecclesiastical parish
, and certain areas of Lowland Scotland
up to the mid 19th Century. It had a similar status to a township
but was so named as it had a chapel
which acted as a subsidiary place of worship to the main Parish Church. Such chapelries were common in the North of England where the Parishes had been established in medieval times when the area was sparsely populated, thus obliging parishioners to travel long distances to the parish church.
A chapelry also had a role in civil government, being a subdivision of a parish which was used as a basis for the Poor Law until the etablishment of Poor Law Unions in the 19th century.