Definitions

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A small prison attached to a police station, usually used on a temporary basis.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A house in which a watch or guard is placed.
  • n. A place where persons under temporary arrest by the police of a city are kept; a police station; a lockup.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A house in which a watch or guard is placed.
  • n. A house where night-watchmen assemble previous to the hour at which they enter upon their respective beats, and where disturbers of the peace seized by them during the night are lodged and kept in custody till morning, when they are brought before a magistrate; a lockup.

Etymologies

watch +‎ house (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • Let the watchhouse, which is in the vineyard, be ten high, and four broad.

    From the Talmud and Hebraica

  • Resistance and enquiry were alike vain, and Ralph was lodged in the watchhouse without even knowing the charge on which he had been taken up.

    Ralph Rashleigh

  • It was already growing dusk when Denisov, Petya, and the esaul rode up to the watchhouse.

    War and Peace

  • As they approached the watchhouse Denisov stopped, peering into the forest.

    War and Peace

  • In the passage of the small watchhouse a Cossack with sleeves rolled up was chopping some mutton.

    War and Peace

  • What is called the liberty of the subject we must leave for a dull barrister to explain: in the meantime, if any reader be impatient for the definition, a night's billeting in Covent Garden watchhouse will initiate him into its blessings; he is not so dull as to require to be told how to get there.

    The Mirror of Literature, Amusement, and Instruction Volume 14, No. 392, October 3, 1829

  • When the buccaneers had been taken ashore under a heavy guard and locked up in the public watchhouse, Mr. Curtis and Bob, with Job and Jeremy, went ashore to stretch their legs.

    The Black Buccaneer

  • On a mountain, at the opposite side of the harbor, they built a watchhouse, where the extensive view prevented all danger of a surprise.

    An Historical Account of the Settlements of Scotch Highlanders in America

  • Beauclerk and Layton to have what he called "a rouze," and Garrick was humorously apprehensive that he would have to bail out his old friend from the watchhouse.

    Pickwickian Manners and Customs

  • "Well, let's go," said Denisov, and rode all the way to the watchhouse in silence and frowning angrily.

    War and Peace

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