latch

When you unlock your front door, you open the latch. A latch is a fastener or lock that you open with a key.

A latch can usually be opened with a key or by turning a knob or lifting a hook or bar. You can also use the word latch as a verb, like when your mom reminds you to latch the front and back doors before you leave for school in the morning. In some places, the word "latch-key" is used to mean "key." The root of latch is the Germanic word læccan, "to grasp or seize."

Definitions of latch
1

n catch for fastening a door or gate; a bar that can be lowered or slid into a groove

Type of:
catch
a fastener that fastens or locks a door or window

n spring-loaded doorlock that can only be opened from the outside with a key

Synonyms:
door latch
Type of:
lock
a fastener fitted to a door or drawer to keep it firmly closed

v fasten with a latch

latch the door”
Type of:
fasten, fix, secure
cause to be firmly attached

Sign up, it's free!

Whether you're a student, an educator, or a lifelong learner, Vocabulary.com can put you on the path to systematic vocabulary improvement.