a toilet or something used as a toilet, as a trench in the earth in a camp, or bivouac area.

Origin of latrine

1635–45; < French < Latin lātrīna, short for lavātrīna place for washing, derivative of lavāre to wash Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Related Words for latrine

outhouse, toilet, bathroom, restroom, lavatory, head, privy, washroom, john

Examples from the Web for latrine

Contemporary Examples of latrine

Historical Examples of latrine

  • Longs, the latrine at Brasenose, so called because built by Lady Long.

    The Slang Dictionary

    John Camden Hotten

  • The word ‘lantine’ on p. 115 is most likely a corruption of ‘latrine’, but has been allowed to stand.


    Edwin A. Brown

  • Andrews was leaving the latrine when he heard a voice call softly, "Skinny."

    Three Soldiers

    John Dos Passos

  • There was no light in the ill-smelling shack that served for a latrine.

    Three Soldiers

    John Dos Passos

  • This latrine is for summer usenot for a week-end camp, you know.

    Natalie: A Garden Scout

    Lillian Elizabeth Roy

British Dictionary definitions for latrine



a lavatory, as in a barracks, camp, etc

Word Origin for latrine

C17: from French, from Latin lātrīna, shortened form of lavātrīna bath, from lavāre to wash
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 latrine

c.1300, probably from Latin latrina, contraction of lavatrina "washbasin, washroom," from lavatus, past participle of lavare "to wash" (see lave) + -trina, suffix denoting "workplace." Its reappearance in 1640s is probably a re-borrowing from French; especially of a privy of a camp, barracks, college, hospital, etc. Latrine rumor "baseless gossip" (of the kind that spreads in conversations in latrines) is military slang, first recorded 1918.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper