latch

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latchkey child

A child who is home alone after school or in general because their parents or guardians are at work. I know it makes me sound horrible, but I just don't want Tommy hanging out with those latchkey children from down the road. Being a latchkey child was tough at times, but it taught me the value of self-reliance at an earlier age than most.
See also: child, latchkey

latchkey kid

A child who is home alone after school or in general because their parents or guardians are at work. I know it makes me sound horrible, but I just don't want Tommy hanging out with those latchkey kids from down the road. Being a latchkey kid was tough at times, but it taught me the value of self-reliance at an earlier age than most.
See also: kid, latchkey

latch onto (someone or something)

1. To understand or make sense of something. Once he latched onto the instructions in the manual, he was able to complete the repair.
2. To gain or obtain something. I need to latch onto a birthday card before the party on Saturday.
3. To become closely involved with a person or group. I latched onto the one friend I'd made at orientation and followed her around the cafeteria.
See also: latch

on the latch

Of a door, closed but not locked. Primarily heard in UK. In the small village where I grew up, you knew everyone around you, so everyone left their doors on the latch.
See also: latch, on

latch on (to someone)

to get hold of someone. I don't know where Jane is. Let me try to latch onto her.
See also: latch, on

latch onto something

 
1. Fig. to obtain something. (See also latch on(to someone or something).) I have to latch onto a hundred bucks by Friday night. I latched onto a good book about repairing plumbing.
2. Fig. to begin to understand something. When Fred finally latched onto the principles of algebra, he began to get better grades. Sue doesn't quite latch onto the proper stance in golf.
See also: latch

latch string is always out

Fig. You are always welcome. Come by anytime. The latch string is always out. No need to call before you come over. For you folks, the latch string is always out.
See also: always, latch, out, string

latch onto

Also, latch on to.
1. Get hold of, grasp; also, understand, grasp mentally. For example, They latched onto a fortune in the fur trade, or Carol quickly latched on to how the sewing machine works. [c. 1930]
2. Attach oneself to, join in with, as in Rob didn't know the way so he latched on to one of the older children. [c. 1930]
See also: latch

on the ˈlatch

(British English) closed but not locked: Can you leave the door on the latch so I can get in?
See also: latch, on

latch

on to/onto
1. To get hold of; obtain: latched on to a fortune in the fur trade.
2. To cling to.
References in periodicals archive ?
Once closed, the latched pawl stays firmly engaged and able to withstand a heavy load, regardless of the latch handle position.
When the voltage exceeds the CR threshold, the controller enters the current regulation mode, holding the current at the programmed level until either the OC event passes, in which case the MOSFET is again fully enhanced and the C(TIM) capacitor is discharged, or the programmed time out period expires, in which case both the FETs are latched off.
The charge (CHG) pin is also an open-drain output that indicates a logic LOW when the charge current is above a minimum current level; when the charge current is below the minimum current, the CHG pin indicates a logic HIGH signal and the status is latched.
Crank the antenna all the way up until the elevation handcrank hits the mechanical stops and then back up the handle until it can be latched.
If the cover latches aren't latched, the cover bounces around during travel and damages the screen.
It features a spring-loaded pawl that keeps constant force on the frame when latched to resist vibration and allow for grip tolerances.