from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun A hospital treating contagious diseases.
  • noun A building or ship used as a quarantine station.
  • noun A storage space between the decks of a ship.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun A hospital or pest-house for the reception of diseased persons, particularly of those affected with contagious diseases; also, a prison hospital. At seaports the name is often given to a vessel used for this purpose.
  • noun A building or vessel where ships' crews, passengers, and goods are detained during quarantine.
  • noun In some large merchant ships, a place near the stern where provisions and stores for the voyage are kept.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun A medical facility specializing in the care for contagious patients.
  • noun A ship or building used for quarantine.
  • noun nautical An area on some merchant ships where provisions are stored.

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

  • noun hospital for persons with infectious diseases (especially leprosy)
  • noun a small locker at the stern of a boat or between decks of a ship


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

[Italian lazzaretto : blend of lazzaro, lazar (from Late Latin Lazarus, Lazarus; see lazar) and dialectal Nazareto, popular name for a hospital maintained in Venice by the Church of Santa Maria di Nazaret.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Italian lazzaretto.


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  • " they glided down the long, long inlet... On, past the lazaretto, past the hospital island..."

    --Patrick O'Brian, The Hundred Days, 69

    March 20, 2008

  • "In 1707, the legislature of South Carolina passed a law that called for the construction of a brick building on the Cove. The structure had dimensions of sixteen by thirty feet and was known as the lazaretto, or alternatively, the 'pest house.' The term 'lazaretto' comes from Italian and means leper's house or plague hospital, a place where the diseased poor, especially foreigners, could be forced to stay. 'Pest house' arose in the spare imagination of the English colonists. The pest house was to provide a quarantine place where pestilence from the sea—diseases found among ship passengers—might be allowed to run its course."

    —Edward Ball, Slaves in the Family (NY: Ballantine Books, 1998), 89

    September 26, 2009

  • This wild contagion must be addressed

    By confining each vector with the rest -

    A lexicomane’s ghetto

    Or a weird lazaretto:

    Wordnik's wards for the word-obsessed.

    January 30, 2014

  • Nice one, qms.

    January 31, 2014

  • Thank you kindly, hernesheir.

    January 31, 2014