noun \ˈla-və-ˌtr-ē, British -və-t(ə-)rē\

: a room with a toilet and sink

: a bathroom sink

plural lav·a·to·ries

Full Definition of LAVATORY

:  a vessel (as a basin) for washing; especially :  a fixed bowl or basin with running water and drainpipe for washing
:  a room with conveniences for washing and usually with one or more toilets
:  toilet 3b
lavatory adjective

Examples of LAVATORY

  1. a wide choice of lavatories on sale at plumbing supply stores
  2. <the school's filthy, broken-down lavatories were a disgrace>

Origin of LAVATORY

Middle English lavatorie, from Medieval Latin lavatorium, from Latin lavare to wash — more at lye
First Known Use: 14th century

Related to LAVATORY

bath, bathroom, bog [British], can, cloakroom [British], comfort station, convenience [chiefly British], head, john, latrine, toilet, loo [chiefly British], potty, restroom, washroom, water closet

Other Building Terms

batten, cistern, hearth, lath, transom, wainscot


Next Word in the Dictionary: lave (noun)
Previous Word in the Dictionary: lavatorial
All Words Near: lavatory

Seen & Heard

What made you want to look up lavatory? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).