latch

1 of 3

verb (1)

latched; latching; latches

intransitive verb

1
: to lay hold with or as if with the hands or arms
used with on or onto
2
: to associate oneself intimately and often artfully
used with on or onto
latched onto a rich widow

latch

2 of 3

noun

: any of various devices in which mating mechanical parts engage to fasten but usually not to lock something:
a
: a fastener (as for a door) consisting essentially of a pivoted bar that falls into a notch
b
: a fastener (as for a door) in which a spring slides a bolt into a hole
also : night latch

latch

3 of 3

verb (2)

latched; latching; latches

transitive verb

: to make fast with or as if with a latch

Example Sentences

Noun He lifted the latch and opened the gate. I heard her key turn in the latch.
Recent Examples on the Web
Verb
Fans latch on to Wilde’s age, her hair, her apparent low levels of hotness compared to Harry. Ct Jones, Rolling Stone, 6 Sep. 2022 While the songs throughout Mary Bragg come from honest feelings, the tracks also embody a universal message that listeners can latch onto in their own lives. Annie Reuter, Forbes, 3 Oct. 2022 Having the mutation means HIV can’t latch onto cells, giving natural resistance. Grace Browne, WIRED, 12 Sep. 2022 For the war is an attempt of Putin’s Russia, shrinking in terms of population and power, to latch onto the prospering people that Gorbachev let go. Thomas Geoghegan, The New Republic, 31 Aug. 2022 And few politicians were as ready to latch on to the new threat to reproductive rights. Daniel Strauss, The New Republic, 7 Oct. 2022 And starved of living trees, the structures can go dormant in the soil for decades, waiting to latch on to their next arboreal snack. Katherine J. Wu, The Atlantic, 15 Aug. 2022 But if one rider gets injured, fans are left without a favorite to latch on to for the season. Brian Steinberg, Variety, 11 July 2022 The fans that latch onto these people that should be in street clothes for games blow my mind. Ira Winderman, Sun Sentinel, 17 Sep. 2022
Noun
Like other scooters in its class, the Yes folds up easily via a latch on the frame and locks into place, weighs 34 pounds, and its lithium ion battery charges from empty to full in about six hours. Scott Kramer, Forbes, 1 Aug. 2022 The automaker said in documents posted Tuesday by U.S. safety regulators that dust and dirt can accumulate on the secondary hood latch. Mark Heim | Mheim@al.com, al, 28 June 2022 The object Petit had was not a handgun and was a 6-inch black metallic latch actuator. Minyvonne Burke, NBC News, 2 Sep. 2022 Additionally, the door should have a secure latch to prevent escapes. Theresa Holland, Peoplemag, 26 Sep. 2022 The Yumbox has only one latch, so little hands can open this bento box with ease. Jessica Hartshorn, Good Housekeeping, 25 July 2022 In contrast, the latch on the Airbus fan cowl doors is in the center of the underside of the pod and can be inspected only by crawling under it. Dominic Gates, Anchorage Daily News, 24 Aug. 2022 Mom, her two daughters and three young granddaughters visited Baribault’s new and unique B Linked Permanent Jewelry Bar and now have delicate 14k gold bracelets with no latch. Pam Mcloughlin, Hartford Courant, 10 Sep. 2022 With an all-steel construction, this gate is suitable for openings between 24 and 40.5 inches wide and opens with a rotating latch that mounts directly to a wall or banister. Kevin Cortez, Popular Mechanics, 7 Sep. 2022 See More

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

Word History

Etymology

Verb (1)

Middle English lachen, from Old English læccan; perhaps akin to Greek lambanein to take, seize

First Known Use

Verb (1)

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Noun

13th century, in the meaning defined above

Verb (2)

1530, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of latch was in the 13th century

Dictionary Entries Near latch

Cite this Entry

“Latch.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/latch. Accessed 2 Dec. 2022.

Kids Definition

latch 1 of 3

verb

1
: to get hold
2
: to attach oneself

latch

2 of 3

noun

: a catch (as a spring bolt) that holds a door or gate closed

latch

3 of 3

verb

: to catch or fasten by means of a latch

More from Merriam-Webster on latch

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