lavatory

noun
lav·​a·​to·​ry | \ ˈla-və-ˌtȯr-ē How to pronounce lavatory (audio) , British -və-t(ə-)rē \
plural lavatories

Definition of lavatory

1 : a vessel (such as a basin) for washing especially : a fixed bowl or basin with running water and drainpipe for washing
2 : a room with conveniences for washing and usually with one or more toilets the airplane's lavatory

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from lavatory

lavatory adjective

Synonyms for lavatory

Synonyms

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of lavatory in a Sentence

a wide choice of lavatories on sale at plumbing supply stores the school's filthy, broken-down lavatories were a disgrace
Recent Examples on the Web The flight attendants also said that other passengers were starting to panic because the coughing passenger had gotten up about five times to use the lavatory, the pilot wrote. Hugo Martín, Los Angeles Times, "Coughing, sneezing, vomiting: Visibly ill people aren’t being kept off planes," 1 Jan. 2021 As the man returned from the lavatory with a mask dangling from one ear, a flight attendant asked him to put it on properly. Michael Laris, Anchorage Daily News, "Sneezed on, cussed at, ignored: Airline workers battle mask resistance with scant government backup," 2 Jan. 2021 The good news is that the air in the lavatory does not seem to pose a major risk. Jayme Deerwester, USA TODAY, "Chinese agency advises flight crews to wear diapers to reduce COVID-19 risk in lavatory: reports," 12 Dec. 2020 The men's dressing room has a dental lavatory, two wash basins with hot and cold running water, two plate-glass mirrors and a plug-in for electric razors. Popular Mechanics Editors, Popular Mechanics, "New York to Europe by Clipper: A Prelude to an Historic Flight," 30 Oct. 2020 The study did not measure what happens when an infected passenger turns his or her head to talk to a fellow traveler or gets out of the seat to walk down the aisle or use the lavatory. Hugo Martin, Anchorage Daily News, "Is the COVID-19 risk on airplanes really as low as airlines claim?," 3 Nov. 2020 The study did not measure what happens when an infected passenger turns his or her head to talk to a fellow traveler or gets out of the seat to walk down the aisle or use the lavatory. al, "What is the risk of catching COVID-19 on an airplane? UAB professor says findings ‘misrepresented’," 30 Oct. 2020 In one notorious instance, a 2013 flight from Nova Scotia to the Dominican Republic had to make an emergency stop in Bermuda when an entire family was caught smoking in a lavatory. Natalie Hamilton, Smithsonian Magazine, "Why Do the Planets All Orbit the Sun in the Same Plane?," 19 Nov. 2020 The study did not measure what happens when an infected passenger turns his or her head to talk to a fellow traveler or gets out of the seat to walk down the aisle or use the lavatory. Hugo Martin, Anchorage Daily News, "Is the COVID-19 risk on airplanes really as low as airlines claim?," 3 Nov. 2020

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

See More

First Known Use of lavatory

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for lavatory

Middle English lavatorie, from Medieval Latin lavatorium, from Latin lavare to wash — more at lye

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about lavatory

Time Traveler for lavatory

Time Traveler

The first known use of lavatory was in the 14th century

See more words from the same century

Statistics for lavatory

Cite this Entry

“Lavatory.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/lavatory. Accessed 13 Apr. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for lavatory

lavatory

noun

English Language Learners Definition of lavatory

formal : a room with a toilet and sink
US, technical : a bathroom sink

lavatory

noun
lav·​a·​to·​ry | \ ˈla-və-ˌtȯr-ē How to pronounce lavatory (audio) \
plural lavatories

Kids Definition of lavatory

1 : a small sink (as in a bathroom)
2 : a room for washing that usually has a toilet

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on lavatory

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

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

The Exceptions Quiz III

  • one green toy robot amidst many red toy robots
  • Which of these words does not mean "nonsense"?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

TAKE THE QUIZ
Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!