noun, often attributive
lan·​tern | \ ˈlan-tərn How to pronounce lantern (audio) \

Definition of lantern

1 : a usually portable protective case for a light with transparent openings — compare chinese lantern
2a obsolete : lighthouse
b : the chamber in a lighthouse containing the light
c : a structure with glazed or open sides above an opening in a roof for light or ventilation
d : a small tower or cupola or one stage of a cupola

Examples of lantern in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web For instance, the Coleman dual-fuel 2-mantle lantern is on sale for $67.39, falling a full 25% from its retail price of $89.95. Melissa Lee, USA TODAY, "REI is having a massive 4th of July sale and these are the top deals," 26 June 2020 Design your own lantern and launch it at Mirror Lake. Luann Gibbs, The Enquirer, "Things to do this week, July 6-12," 6 July 2012 There’s also a rechargeable lantern to illuminate the campsite or tent. oregonlive, "Father’s Day: Great sports, exercise gift ideas to get dads fit," 14 June 2020 This jack-o-lantern-esque view of Jupiter is a mosaic of images taken by the Gemini North telescope in Hawaii. Ashley Strickland, CNN, "New images reveal the heart of Jupiter's storms and the planet's jack-o-lantern glow," 9 May 2020 This is next to a brick-and-plank bridge with lanterns and a Japanese curve, wrapped with walks in curving brick patterns. Judy Rose, Detroit Free Press, "$3.2M Bloomfield Hills estate is so grand your guests can have guests," 15 Feb. 2020 The generously sized family room will feature white oak timbers and Marvin sliding glass doors that open to a spacious outdoor living area with Bevolo gas lanterns, Infratech porch heaters and a fireplace. Dallas News, "Customization available for Park Cities home by LRO Residential," 9 Feb. 2020 According to BBC News, police suspect that three women—a mother and two adult daughters—inadvertently caused the blaze by releasing floating lanterns into the sky. Brigit Katz, Smithsonian Magazine, "More Than 30 Animals, Among Them ‘Highly Endangered’ Species, Killed in Fire at German Zoo," 1 Jan. 2020 Videographer Ben Skipworth captured every delicious detail including the conclusion of festivities: the happy couple released floating lanterns with their guests then rode off into the night in a vintage Dodge. 2. Maria Carter, Country Living, "5 Seriously Romantic Wedding Videos from Fall Weddings," 22 Sep. 2016

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'lantern.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of lantern

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for lantern

Middle English lanterne, from Anglo-French, from Latin lanterna, from Greek lamptēr, from lampein to shine — more at lamp

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Time Traveler for lantern

Time Traveler

The first known use of lantern was in the 13th century

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Statistics for lantern

Last Updated

14 Jul 2020

Cite this Entry

“Lantern.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 4 Aug. 2020.

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More Definitions for lantern


How to pronounce lantern (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of lantern

: a light that has usually a glass covering and that can be carried by a handle


lan·​tern | \ ˈlan-tərn How to pronounce lantern (audio) \

Kids Definition of lantern

: a usually portable lamp with a protective covering

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