from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A large basin used in the ancient Jewish Temple by a priest for ablutions before making a sacrificial offering.
  • n. Archaic A vessel, stone basin, or trough used for washing.
  • n. Any of several dried, edible seaweeds of the genera Porphyra (the red algae) and Ulva (the green algae).

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A red alga of the genus Porphyra.
  • n. A wash-basin.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A vessel for washing; a large basin.
  • n.
  • n. A large brazen vessel placed in the court of the Jewish tabernacle where the officiating priests washed their hands and feet.
  • n. One of several vessels in Solomon's Temple in which the offerings for burnt sacrifices were washed.
  • n. That which washes or cleanses.
  • n. One who laves; a washer.
  • n. The fronds of certain marine algæ used as food, and for making a sauce called laver sauce. Green laver is the Ulva latissima; purple laver, Porphyra laciniata and Porphyra vulgaris. It is prepared by stewing, either alone or with other vegetables, and with various condiments; -- called also sloke, or sloakan.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Hanging.
  • n. A basin, bowl, trough, or cistern to wash in.
  • n. In heraldry, a colter or plowshare when used as a bearing.
  • n. Either of two species of algæ. of the genus Porphyra, P. laciniata and P. vulgaris, known in Ireland and Scotland as sloke or Sloakan.
  • n. A dish composed of one of the above algæ or of some similar seaweed. See laver-bread.
  • n. Figuratively, the baptismal font; the spiritual regeneration of baptism; any cleansing of the spirit.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. Australian tennis player who in 1962 was the second man to win the Australian and French and English and United States singles titles in the same year; in 1969 he repeated this feat (born in 1938)
  • n. seaweed with edible translucent crinkly green fronds
  • n. edible red seaweeds
  • n. (Old Testament) large basin used by a priest in an ancient Jewish temple to perform ritual ablutions


from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

Middle English, water pitcher, from Old French laveoir, probably from Late Latin lavātōrium; see lavatory.
Middle English, a water plant, from Old English læfer, from Latin.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Latin (see below).

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Old French laveoir, from Latin lavatorium. Compare lavatory.



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  • (verb) - To wash. It was anciently 13th century the custom for guests to wash before sitting down to meals, and it seems that the signal for this ablution was given by sounding a trumpet.

    --William Toone's Etymological Dictionary of Obsolete Words, 1832

    January 19, 2018

  • "... from rare archaeo-botanical remains, we do know that the Celts foraged for Britain's abundant wild, seasonal foods: laver and carrageen seaweeds on the coast, rock samphire and sea kale or scurvy grass not unlike asparagus. ..."

    --Kate Colquhoun, Taste: The Story of Britain Through Its Cooking (NY: Bloomsbury, 2007), 11

    January 6, 2017