a string passed through a hole in a door, for raising the latch from the outside.

Origin of latchstring

First recorded in 1785–95; latch + string Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for latchstring

Historical Examples of latchstring

  • As he closed it he did an unprecedented thing,he drew in the latchstring.

  • It goes often to the home where the latchstring hangs on the outside.

    Laugh and Live

    Douglas Fairbanks

  • Perhaps the reader has heard before this of having the latchstring out, but has not known just what the phrase meant.

    Stories Of Ohio

    William Dean Howells

  • Now callers upon the Hamlins, in general, just pulled the latchstring and came in.

  • He twitched the latchstring, the door being so balanced on its hinges that it swung inward of itself.

British Dictionary definitions for latchstring



a length of string fastened to a latch and passed through a hole in the door so that it can be opened from the other side
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