Definition of barracks in English:


(also barrack)

plural noun

  • 1[often treated as singular] A large building or group of buildings used to house soldiers.

    ‘the troops were ordered back to barracks’
    ‘the main army barracks’
    • ‘I saw a senior commander sit in the barracks and complain with his soldiers for days while waiting to deploy, ignoring advice to use the time for training.’
    • ‘The Palmach House sits on the edge of the army orchestra's barracks; their parade ground will eventually spill over onto its car park roof.’
    • ‘Obviously, girls should not be trained for military service in the barracks because our barracks so far do not measure up to world standards.’
    • ‘Ripple firecracker detonations erupted from the rise overlooking the barracks as the militiamen opened fire.’
    • ‘But an unnamed friend of the teenager said the youngster was joking and talking with a soldier guarding the barracks when the soldier opened fire without provocation.’
    • ‘One soldier, rather close to the bottom of the ladder, was quite satisfied to simply keep the latrines clean and the barracks stoves going in cold weather.’
    • ‘In barracks sentries are usually furnished by the unit's guard, a detachment of soldiers on duty for a 24-hour period, who live in the guardroom or guardhouse.’
    • ‘One leaked battle plan shows they will lay on anti-Bush rallies using serving soldiers outside military barracks.’
    • ‘Soldiers returning to complete the base closure mission could be housed together in barracks designated specifically for closure personnel.’
    • ‘These imports are used to feed patients in hospitals, learners in schools and soldiers in the army barracks.’
    • ‘One morning, nine trucks drove into the camp, winding past the barracks and buildings where soldiers repaired tanks and trucks.’
    • ‘Some of the problems involved soldiers from the army barracks in Warminster.’
    • ‘Maj-Gen Evans said one of his immediate priorities was to consolidate across the division, giving soldiers more time in barracks and at home than has been the case in past few years.’
    • ‘I moved a group of soldiers nearby the enemy barracks, and they started shooting at it automatically.’
    • ‘This included the construction, maintenance and repair of military roads, barracks and cantonments.’
    • ‘The barracks and cantonment areas of major army bases are fine for getting ready to communicate in urban combat.’
    • ‘The soldiers returned to their barracks and mobilised a large crowd of their brothers-in-arms for the assault on the police station.’
    • ‘The war hardened general then strode out of the barracks as his soldiers got dressed in their battle armor, and headed towards the stables.’
    • ‘They all made their way up to the castle while the king instructed soldiers to the military barracks.’
    • ‘The assassinations and bombings carried out by the Partisans forced the German soldiers into their barracks.’
    garrison, camp, encampment, depot, billet, quarters, fort, cantonment, guardhouse
    stone frigate
    lobster box
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1A building or group of buildings used to house a specific group of people, such as labourers or prisoners, in austere conditions.
      ‘factory owners were usually responsible for the housing of their workers, providing barracks nearby’
    2. 1.2British A large, ugly building.
      ‘that great barrack of a house’


Late 17th century: barrack from French baraque, from Italian baracca or Spanish barraca soldier's tent, of unknown origin.