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latch

[lach] /lætʃ/
noun
1.
a device for holding a door, gate, or the like, closed, consisting basically of a bar falling or sliding into a catch, groove, hole, etc.
verb (used with object)
2.
to close or fasten with a latch.
verb (used without object)
3.
to close tightly so that the latch is secured:
The door won't latch.
Verb phrases
4.
latch on,
  1. to grab or hold on, as to an object or idea, especially tightly or tenaciously.
  2. to include or add in; attach:
    If we latch the tax on, the bill will come to over $100.
5.
latch onto, Informal.
  1. to take possession of; obtain; get.
  2. to acquire understanding of; comprehend.
  3. to attach oneself to; join in with:
    The stray dog latched onto the children and wouldn't go home.
Origin of latch
950
before 950; 1930-35 for def 5; Middle English lacchen, Old English lǣccan to take hold of, catch, seize; akin to Greek lázesthai to take
Related forms
relatch, verb (used with object)
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2016.
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Examples from the Web for latched
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Bill slammed the door and latched it, then fumbled frantically with the starter switch.

  • It's no secret that we've latched on to quite a number of your friends.

    Highways in Hiding George Oliver Smith
  • After she had locked and latched the door she set about the business of emptying her kit bags.

    The Pagan Madonna Harold MacGrath
  • The door was not latched, and every thing was so quiet that I stood still and listened.

    Aunt Kitty's Tales Maria J. McIntosh
  • When the door is latched the wooden piece F fits underneath the latch as shown by Fig. 317.

British Dictionary definitions for latched

latch

/lætʃ/
noun
1.
a fastening for a gate or door that consists of a bar that may be slid or lowered into a groove, hole, etc
2.
a spring-loaded door lock that can be opened by a key from outside
3.
(electronics) Also called latch circuit. a logic circuit that transfers the input states to the output states when signalled, the output thereafter remaining insensitive to changes in input status until signalled again
verb
4.
to fasten, fit, or be fitted with or as if with a latch
Word Origin
Old English læccan to seize, of Germanic origin; related to Greek lazesthai
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for latched

latch

v.

Old English læccan "to grasp or seize," from Proto-Germanic *lakkijanan. Not found in other Germanic languages; probably from PIE *(s)lagw- "to seize" (see analemma). In its original sense the verb was paralleled in Middle English and then replaced by French import catch (v.). Meaning "to fasten with a latch" is mid-15c. Related: Latched; latching.

n.

a fastening for a door, etc., late 13c., probably from latch (v.).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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13
14
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