[ lawn-der, lahn- ]
/ ˈlɔn dər, ˈlɑn- /
See synonyms for: launder / launderable on

verb (used with object)

verb (used without object)

to wash laundry.
to undergo washing and ironing: The shirt didn't launder well.


(in ore dressing) a passage carrying products of intermediate grade and residue in water suspension.
Metallurgy. a channel for conveying molten steel to a ladle.



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Origin of launder

1300–50; 1970–75 for def. 3; Middle English: launderer, syncopated variant of lavandere, lavendere washer of linen <Middle French lavandier(e) <Medieval Latin lavandārius (masculine), lavandāria (feminine), equivalent to Latin lavand- (gerund stem of lavāre to wash) + -ārius, -āria-ary; see -er2)

OTHER WORDS FROM launder Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021

Example sentences from the Web for launder

  • After due reflection I decided to start as a launderer, specialising in washing shirts at ten pfennigs, or one penny, apiece.

  • You, Cale and Richards, run to fetch a launderer that shall set a mattress in the ante-chamber for this my cousin to lie on.

    The Fifth Queen Crowned|Ford Madox Ford

British Dictionary definitions for launder

/ (ˈlɔːndə) /


to wash, sometimes starch, and often also iron (clothes, linen, etc)
(intr) to be capable of being laundered without shrinking, fading, etc
(tr) to process (something acquired illegally) to make it appear respectable, esp to process illegally acquired funds through a legitimate business or to send them to a foreign bank for subsequent transfer to a home bank


a water trough, esp one used for washing ore in mining

Derived forms of launder

launderer, noun

Word Origin for launder

C14 (n, meaning: a person who washes linen): changed from lavender washerwoman, from Old French lavandiere, ultimately from Latin 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