or lac·ri·ma·to·ry

[ lak-ruh-muh-tawr-ee, -tohr-ee ]

  1. of, relating to, or causing the shedding of tears.

noun,plural lach·ry·ma·to·ries.
  1. Also called lachrymal. a small, narrow-necked vase found in ancient Roman tombs, formerly thought to have been used to catch and keep the tears of bereaved friends.

Origin of lachrymatory

1650–60; (noun) <Medieval Latin lachrymātōrium, equivalent to lachrymā(re) to shed tears + -tōrium-tory2; (adj.) <Medieval Latin lachrymātōrius, equivalent to lachrymā(re) + -tōrius-tory1; see lachrymal

Words Nearby lachrymatory Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2024

How to use lachrymatory in a sentence

  • Roman vessels—a red thing that might have been a lamp, another that might have been a lachrymatory.

    The Daisy Chain | Charlotte Yonge
  • Alluding to the lachrymatory vials, or bottles of tears, which the Romans sometimes put into the urn of a friend.

  • Investigation showed that a horse's eyes did not shed tears in the presence of even strong lachrymatory gases.

  • Between the faces is an object like an ancient lachrymatory.

    The Catacombs of Rome | William Henry Withrow
  • Your uncle is great in the lachrymatory line, Clive Newcome.

    The Newcomes | William Makepeace Thackeray

British Dictionary definitions for lachrymatory


/ (ˈlækrɪmətərɪ, -trɪ) /

nounplural -ries
  1. a small vessel found in ancient tombs, formerly thought to hold the tears of mourners

  1. a variant spelling of lacrimatory

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