Dictionary: A   B   C   D   E   F   G   H   I   J   K   L   M   N   O   P   Q   R   S   T   U   V   W   X   Y   Z


[luhnch] /lʌntʃ/

a light midday meal between breakfast and dinner; .
any light meal or snack.
a restaurant or :
Let’s eat at the dairy lunch.
verb (used without object)
to eat lunch:
We lunched quite late today.
verb (used with object)
to provide lunch for:
They lunched us in regal fashion.
out to lunch, Slang. not paying attention or tending to business; negligent:
You must have been out to lunch when you wrote that weird report.
a meal eaten during the middle of the day
(Caribbean) (among older people) mid-afternoon tea
(intransitive) to eat lunch
(transitive) to provide or buy lunch for

“mid-day repast,” 1786, shortened form of luncheon (q.v.). The verb meaning “to take to lunch” (said to be from the noun) also is attested from 1786:

PRATTLE. I always to be ſure, makes a point to keep up the dignity of the family I lives in. Wou’d you take a more ſolid refreſhment?–Have you lunch’d, Mr. Bribe?

BRIBE. Lunch’d O dear! Permit me, my dear Mrs. Prattle, to refreſh my sponge, upon the honey dew that clings to your raviſhing pouters. O! Mrs. Prattle, this ſhall be my lunch. (kiſſes)

[“The Mode,” in William Davies’ “Plays Written for a Private Theatre,” London, 1786]

But as late as 1817 the only definition of lunch in Webster’s is “a large piece of food.” OED says in 1820s the word “was regarded either as a vulgarism, or as a fashionable affectation.” Related: Lunched; lunching. Lunch money is attested from 1868; lunch-time (n.) is from 1821; lunch hour is from 1840. Slang phrase out to lunch “insane, stupid, clueless” first recorded 1955, on notion of being “not there.” Old English had nonmete “afternoon meal,” literally “noon-meat.”


Related Terms

eat someone’s lunch, out to lunch, shoot one’s cookies


Read Also:

  • Lunch-bucket

    [luhnch-boks] /ˈlʌntʃˌbɒks/ noun 1. a small container, usually of metal or plastic and with a handle, for carrying one’s from home to school or work. /ˈlʌntʃˌbɒks/ noun 1. a container for carrying a packed lunch 2. (Brit & Austral, jocular) a man’s genitals noun a container for regularly carrying one’s midday meal; also written lunch […]

  • Lunch-counter

    noun 1. a counter, as in a store or restaurant, where light meals and snacks are served or are sold to be taken out. 2. a luncheonette.

  • Luncheon club

    noun 1. (social welfare) (in Britain) an arrangement or organization for serving hot midday meals for a small charge to old people in clubs or daycentres 2. a society or group of people who meet regularly for an organized lunch: a ladies’ luncheon club

  • Luncheon

    [luhn-chuh n] /ˈlʌn tʃən/ noun 1. lunch, especially a formal lunch held in connection with a meeting or other special occasion: the alumni luncheon. /ˈlʌntʃən/ noun 1. a lunch, esp a formal one n. “light repast between mealtimes,” 1650s (lunching; spelling luncheon by 1706); earlier “thick piece, hunk,” 1570s (luncheon), of uncertain origin. Perhaps northern […]

Disclaimer: Lunch definition / meaning should not be considered complete, up to date, and is not intended to be used in place of a visit, consultation, or advice of a legal, medical, or any other professional. All content on this website is for informational purposes only.