Definition of latch in English:


Pronunciation /laCH/ /lætʃ/

See synonyms for latch

Translate latch into Spanish


  • 1A metal bar with a catch and lever used for fastening a door or gate.

    ‘On large canvas slabs, he uses a thick rust-colored paint and applies objects such as antler-shaped branches, a door latch or a metal chain.’
    • ‘He put it on, swung down from the sides the cheek-guards, fastened the metal latch tightly.’
    • ‘He was holding the latch of a metal door in the side of the pipe.’
    • ‘Solid gates are more likely to catch the wind, and a faulty latch will cause the gate to bang about, causing you and your neighbours sleepless nights.’
    • ‘Darius flipped the latch and pushed the gate open.’
    • ‘She crept downstairs, holding her breath as she passed her mother's room, pulled on her coat and shoes then lifted the heavy latch which secured the door.’
    • ‘It is made out of household parts, including a gate latch and a bike seat, and is thought to have been used for an arms exhibition.’
    • ‘I walked over to the large oak door and lifted the latch.’
    • ‘You have to lift the latch to swing the door out, and listen for it to click when it closes.’
    • ‘Heavy-duty one-way and two-way gate latches can be operated with one hand, even on horseback!’
    • ‘He led them deep into the back of the castle before they crossed a small, obviously rarely used courtyard and he paused, pulling back the rusty latch of the small gate.’
    • ‘He simply chuckled in return, stepping closer and undoing the latch to the metal box on the floor.’
    • ‘I nodded at Mr. Gretchen and slowly made my way over to the gate and unhooked the latch.’
    • ‘Sid and Joey are proud of the family history the farms portray, from the stately Westleigh bank barn to the handmade gate hinges and latches made from iron by a 1930s farmhand.’
    • ‘Good fencing with secure gates and latches can provide homeowners with added protection and security for their homes and property.’
    • ‘Bolt-thru gate hinges and latches provides stability and long lasting performance.’
    • ‘Because if it is the one with the gate, that is quite a secure fence and it looks like a gate with a latch.’
    • ‘I reached for the gate's latch and then pain seared through my head.’
    • ‘Their products are about as accurate as a lobbed brick, and cycle like the rusty gate latch in your great aunt Emily's side yard.’
    • ‘Lifting her dress a few inches, she ran daintily across the grass and fumbled for a moment with the latch of the gate, locking it quickly behind her.’
    fastening, catch, fastener
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    1. 1.1A spring lock for an outer door that catches when the door is closed and can only be opened from the outside with a key.
      ‘Within seconds, I had located the latch and opened the door.’
      • ‘Wasting no time I pulled on my trousers and buckled them, kicking into my shoes and grabbing my shirt and jacket when the door latch opened.’
      • ‘He fumbled for the latch to open his door, and left the limousine and the beautiful woman behind as quickly as he could.’
      • ‘John undid the latch and opened the door as if he were breaking in, using his shoulder like a battering ram.’
      • ‘There is a second lock preventing the latch from opening the door.’
      • ‘It is a good idea to actually install the spring latch itself in the door temporarily to be sure the plate is properly located.’
      • ‘The kiln includes a floating door system with four spring door latches and a recess on the inner door surface.’
      • ‘Outside, several latches disengaged, one after another.’
      • ‘I was also very impressed with the ease with which the split rear seats could be dropped using spring-loaded latches.’
      • ‘Of course, it is a little late to be thinking about this now, since the plate must align with the spring latch of the lock you just installed.’
      • ‘Sturdy metal doors, held shut with spring latches, keep prying eyes and little hands away from the internal components.’
      • ‘The latch didn't catch, and the door shivered open.’
      • ‘When you depress the spring-loaded latch it opens smoothly on a hinge (also spring loaded).’
      • ‘The side access panel is secured and released by means of two knurled thumbscrews and a spring-loaded latch.’
      • ‘A deadbolt is more secure than a spring-driven latch since it's much harder to push the bolt in from the side of the door.’
      • ‘She pushed a series of buttons on the outside of the door and a latch unhitched.’
      • ‘One latch is spring-loaded and another is a two-position switch that prevents the battery from slipping out accidentally.’
      • ‘The fore-end is mounted to the barrels not with a cheap spring latch as on late American doubles, but rather with a nicely inlet lever release.’
      • ‘The key turned, the latch unlocked and the door opened.’
      • ‘John steps silently into the hallway and closes the door behind him, careful not to make a noise when he presses the button on the metal latch.’
      bolt, lock, latch, catch, fastening, fastener
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    2. 1.2Electronics A circuit that retains whatever output state results from a momentary input signal until reset by another signal.
      ‘The binding latch remains in a reset state while the battery signal is applied.’
      • ‘The compare circuit includes a holding circuitry that includes a number of latches for holding an encoded version of a memory address.’
      • ‘Sense amplifier latches are coupled to each column of memory cells.’
      • ‘In one embodiment, the storage element is a data latch comprising a clock-enabled inverter serially coupled with a flip-flop.’
      • ‘The actuator latch of a hard disk drive selectively intercepts the movement of the locking protrusion at the actuator so that the actuator is locked and unlocked.’
    3. 1.3The part of a knitting machine needle that closes or opens to hold or release the wool.

transitive verb

[with object]
  • 1Fasten (a door or gate) with a latch.

    ‘she latched the door carefully’
    • ‘Kathryn rolled her eyes and latched the door securely.’
    • ‘Once the viewing was over, they latched the door again, in silence.’
    • ‘And he shushed her, pulling her into the house, and latching the back door.’
    • ‘Alexandra did so, quietly shutting and latching the door behind her.’
    • ‘After latching the door I turned back into the dark room and froze.’
    • ‘So we latched the door and waited in dark silence with bottles in our hands while four huge dudes tried to kick in the windows and doors yelling at us to come out so they could shoot and kill us.’
    • ‘Without waiting for a reply, he latched the door shut again.’
    • ‘Noah latched the gate and turned around, standing next to her.’
    • ‘He nodded to one of the serfs, who turned and latched the door.’
    • ‘Aimee went into the last cubicle and latched the door, deciding that she should read a book there until the bell rings.’
    • ‘I latched the glass door, and locked the other one, and then I left for the streets.’
    • ‘Kathryn started as well and quickly slipped from the stall and latched the door.’
    • ‘He stepped out of the shed and latched the door behind him just as Trent slammed the tailgate shut.’
    • ‘He kept disappearing into the toilet where he would latch the door and snort cocaine.’
    • ‘She latched the door shut as she stepped outside and looked around.’
    • ‘‘My mother wants to see you,’ Marc said, latching the door softly.’
    • ‘She took of her halter, slipped out of the stall, and then closed and latched the stall door.’
    • ‘‘Alright,’ Sam called, exiting the barn and sliding the two large doors shut and latching them.’
    • ‘She shut the door, latched it, and climbed into the driver's seat.’
    • ‘Her father walked briskly to the door, and latched it shut, before having a seat at the counter.’
    fasten, secure, make fast, bar, bolt
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1Electronics no object (of a device) become fixed in a particular state.

Phrasal Verbs

    latch onto
    • 1latch onto somethinginformal Take up an idea or trend enthusiastically.

      • ‘the newspapers latched onto the idea of healthy eating’
      1. 1.1(of one substance) cohere with another.
        • ‘the DNA chain latches onto its counterpart’
    • 2latch onto somethinginformal Understand the meaning of something.

      • ‘she'll soon latch onto what is happening’
    • 3latch onto someoneinformal Attach oneself to someone as a constant and usually unwelcome companion.

      • ‘he spent the whole evening trying to latch onto my friends’


Old English læccan ‘take hold of, grasp (physically or mentally’), of Germanic origin.