[ kloh-cher ]
/ ˈkloʊ tʃər /
U.S. Parliamentary Procedure


a method of closing a debate and causing an immediate vote to be taken on the question.

verb (used with or without object), clo·tured, clo·tur·ing.

to close (a debate) by cloture.

Origin of cloture

1870–75; < French clôture, Middle French closture < Vulgar Latin *clōstūra, alteration of Latin clōstra, claustra, plural of claustrum barrier. See claustral, -ure Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for cloture

British Dictionary definitions for cloture


/ (ˈkləʊtʃə) /


closure in the US Senate


(tr) to end (debate) in the US Senate by cloture

Word Origin for cloture

C19: from French clôture, from Old French closure
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

Word Origin and History for cloture



1871, the French word for "closure, the action of closing," applied to debates in the French Assembly ("action of closing (debate) by will of a majority"), then to the House of Commons and U.S. Congress, from French clôture, from Old French closture (see closure). It was especially used in English by those opposed to the tactic.

In foreign countries the Clôture has been used notoriously to barricade up a majority against the "pestilent" criticism of a minority, and in this country every "whip" and force is employed by the majority to re-assert its continued supremacy and to keep its ranks intact whenever attacked. How this one-sided struggle to maintain solidarity can be construed into "good for all" is inexplicable in the sense uttered. ["The clôture and the Recent Debate, a Letter to Sir J. Lubbock," London, 1882]
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Culture definitions for cloture


[ (kloh-chuhr) ]

A vote of a legislature used to stop debate on an issue and put the issue to a vote. (See filibuster.)

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.