porter

1
[ pawr-ter, pohr- ]
/ ˈpɔr tər, ˈpoʊr- /

noun

a person hired to carry burdens or baggage, as at a railroad station or a hotel.
a person who does cleaning and maintenance work in a building, factory, store, etc.
an attendant in a railroad parlor car or sleeping car.

Nearby words

  1. porte,
  2. porte-cochere,
  3. portend,
  4. portent,
  5. portentous,
  6. porter chair,
  7. porter's sign,
  8. porter, cole,
  9. porter, david,
  10. porter, david dixon

Origin of porter

1
1350–1400; Middle English, variant of portour < Middle French porteour < Late Latin portātōr- (stem of portātor). See port5, -or2

porter

2
[ pawr-ter, pohr- ]
/ ˈpɔr tər, ˈpoʊr- /

noun

a person who has charge of a door or gate; doorkeeper.
Roman Catholic Church. ostiary(def 1).

Origin of porter

2
1250–1300; Middle English < Anglo-French < Late Latin portārius gatekeeper. See port4, -er2

porter

3
[ pawr-ter, pohr- ]
/ ˈpɔr tər, ˈpoʊr- /

noun

a heavy, dark-brown ale made with malt browned by drying at a high temperature.

Origin of porter

3
First recorded in 1720–30; short for porter's ale, apparently orig. brewed for porters

Porter

[ pawr-ter, pohr- ]
/ ˈpɔr tər, ˈpoʊr- /

noun

port

2
[ pawrt, pohrt ]
/ pɔrt, poʊrt /

noun

the left-hand side of a vessel or aircraft, facing forward.

adjective

pertaining to or designating port.
located on the left side of a vessel or aircraft.

verb (used with or without object)

to turn or shift to the port, or left, side.

Origin of port

2
First recorded in 1570–80; special use of port4

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for porter


British Dictionary definitions for porter

porter

1
/ (ˈpɔːtə) /

noun

a person employed to carry luggage, parcels, supplies, etc, esp at a railway station or hotel
(in hospitals) a person employed to move patients from place to place
US and Canadian a railway employee who waits on passengers, esp in a sleeper
East African a manual labourer

Word Origin for porter

C14: from Old French portour, from Late Latin portātōr, from Latin portāre to carry

noun

mainly British a person in charge of a gate or door; doorman or gatekeeper
a person employed by a university or college as a caretaker and doorkeeper who also answers enquiries
a person in charge of the maintenance of a building, esp a block of flats
Also called: ostiary RC Church a person ordained to what was formerly the lowest in rank of the minor orders

Word Origin for porter

C13: from Old French portier, from Late Latin portārius doorkeeper, from Latin porta door

noun

British a dark sweet ale brewed from black malt

Word Origin for porter

C18: shortened from porter's ale, apparently because it was a favourite beverage of porters

Porter

/ (ˈpɔːtə) /

noun

Cole. 1893–1964, US composer and lyricist of musical comedies. His most popular songs include Night and Day and Let's do It
George, Baron Porter of Luddenham. 1920–2002, British chemist, who shared a Nobel prize for chemistry in 1967 for his work on flash photolysis
Katherine Anne. 1890–1980, US short-story writer and novelist. Her best-known collections of stories are Flowering Judas (1930) and Pale Horse, Pale Rider (1939)
Rodney Robert. 1917–85, British biochemist: shared the Nobel prize for physiology or medicine 1972 for determining the structure of an antibody
William Sidney. original name of O. Henry

port

1
/ (pɔːt) /

noun

a town or place alongside navigable water with facilities for the loading and unloading of ships

Word Origin for port

Old English, from Latin portus harbour, port

port

2
/ (pɔːt) /

noun

Also called (formerly): larboard
  1. the left side of an aircraft or vessel when facing the nose or bow
  2. (as modifier)the port bow Compare starboard (def. 1)

verb

to turn or be turned towards the port

Word Origin for port

C17: origin uncertain

port

3
/ (pɔːt) /

noun

a sweet fortified dessert wine

Word Origin for port

C17: after Oporto, Portugal, from where it came originally

port

4
/ (pɔːt) /

noun

nautical
  1. an opening in the side of a ship, fitted with a watertight door, for access to the holds
  2. See porthole (def. 1)
a small opening in a wall, armoured vehicle, etc, for firing through
an aperture, esp one controlled by a valve, by which fluid enters or leaves the cylinder head of an engine, compressor, etc
electronics a logic circuit for the input and ouput of data
mainly Scot a gate or portal in a town or fortress

Word Origin for port

Old English, from Latin porta gate

port

5
/ (pɔːt) military /

verb

(tr) to carry (a rifle, etc) in a position diagonally across the body with the muzzle near the left shoulder

noun

this position

Word Origin for port

C14: from Old French, from porter to carry, from Latin portāre

port

6
/ (pɔːt) /

verb

(tr) computing to change (programs) from one system to another

Word Origin for port

C20: probably from port 4

port

7
/ (pɔːt) /

noun

Australian (esp in Queensland) a suitcase or school case

Word Origin for port

C20: shortened from portmanteau

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 porter
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Medicine definitions for porter

Porter

[ pôrtər ]
Rodney Robert 1917-1985

British biochemist. He shared a 1972 Nobel Prize for his research on the chemical structure and nature of antibodies.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

Science definitions for porter

Porter

[ pôrtər ]
Rodney Robert 1917-1985

British biochemist who shared with George Edelman the 1972 Nobel Prize for physiology or medicine for their study of the chemical structure of antibodies.

port

[ pôrt ]

An opening, as in a cylinder or valve face, for the passage of steam or fluid.
A place where data can pass into or out of a central processing unit, computer, or peripheral. With central processing units, a port is a fixed set of connections for incoming and outgoing data or instructions. With computers and peripherals, a port is generally a socket into which a connector can be plugged.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Idioms and Phrases with porter

port

see any port in a storm.

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.