verb (used with object)
verb (used without object)
- to grab or hold on, as to an object or idea, especially tightly or tenaciously.
- to include or add in; attach: If we latch the tax on, the bill will come to over $100.
- to take possession of; obtain; get.
- to acquire understanding of; comprehend.
- to attach oneself to; join in with: The stray dog latched onto the children and wouldn't go home.
Origin of latch
Word Origin for latch
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.
a fastening for a door, etc., late 13c., probably from latch (v.).
Also, latch on to.
Get hold of, grasp; also, understand, grasp mentally. For example, They latched onto a fortune in the fur trade, or Carol quickly latched on to how the sewing machine works. [c. 1930]
Attach oneself to, join in with, as in Rob didn't know the way so he latched on to one of the older children. [c. 1930]