Definition of barracks in US English:


plural noun

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

    ‘the troops were ordered back to barracks’
    ‘the main army barracks’
    • ‘The war hardened general then strode out of the barracks as his soldiers got dressed in their battle armor, and headed towards the stables.’
    • ‘Ripple firecracker detonations erupted from the rise overlooking the barracks as the militiamen opened fire.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘Some of the problems involved soldiers from the army barracks in Warminster.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘One morning, nine trucks drove into the camp, winding past the barracks and buildings where soldiers repaired tanks and trucks.’
    • ‘The barracks and cantonment areas of major army bases are fine for getting ready to communicate in urban combat.’
    • ‘These imports are used to feed patients in hospitals, learners in schools and soldiers in the army barracks.’
    • ‘I moved a group of soldiers nearby the enemy barracks, and they started shooting at it automatically.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘Obviously, girls should not be trained for military service in the barracks because our barracks so far do not measure up to world standards.’
    • ‘One leaked battle plan shows they will lay on anti-Bush rallies using serving soldiers outside military barracks.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘The assassinations and bombings carried out by the Partisans forced the German soldiers into their barracks.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘They all made their way up to the castle while the king instructed soldiers to the military barracks.’
    • ‘The soldiers returned to their barracks and mobilised a large crowd of their brothers-in-arms for the assault on the police station.’
    • ‘Soldiers returning to complete the base closure mission could be housed together in barracks designated specifically for closure personnel.’
    • ‘This included the construction, maintenance and repair of military roads, barracks and cantonments.’
    garrison, camp, encampment, depot, billet, quarters, fort, cantonment, guardhouse
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 A building or group of buildings used to house a specific group of people, such as laborers or prisoners, in austere conditions.
      ‘factory owners were usually responsible for the housing of their workers, providing barracks nearby’
      • ‘A designated 2.5 acre site in the 60 acre barrack complex will be used and it is intended that family groups, in the main, will be housed in these 50 mobile homes.’
      • ‘We lived for a long time 12 families in one barrack with one toilet outside.’
      • ‘But on the other end, you don't want the campus to be a barrack.’
      • ‘She was in the same barrack as I. Maggie was holding Nathan for me.’
      • ‘The artists who created installations in the low barrack buildings could scarcely compete with the somber plaques explaining the significance of each area.’
      • ‘The meeting took place out in the open, with four poles and a canvas for a roof - there was no barrack large enough to comfortably house a dozen people in the hot weather.’
      • ‘She found her way to the last barrack before the tunnel turned into a bridge over the Ebruan River that flowed through the middle of the city.’
      • ‘Van Pelt noted that the undressing barrack is correctly positioned vis-à-vis the cottage.’
      • ‘The High Range Club is ‘a barrack of a building’ built at the same time as Christ Church in 1910.’
      • ‘They hugged each other hard, and Ann left for her own barrack.’
      • ‘Inside the Pavilion, there is even an original barrack from the Heart Mountain Relocation center.’
      • ‘Ian and Bryan walked with her to the door of the barrack.’
      • ‘These new buildings would replace the barrack structures in the main entrance square and would be suitable for those looking for larger office spaces.’
      • ‘Fiera's entrance was heralded by a rather loud slamming of the barrack's door, but not a single head turned toward the sudden sound.’


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