synonyms, antonyms, definitions, examples & translations of factory in English

English Online Dictionary. What means factory‎? What does factory mean?



From Latin factorium (place of doers, makers). Equivalent to factor +‎ -y. Compare Middle French factorie; Italian fattoria, Spanish factoría, Portuguese feitoria, Dutch factorij.


  • (Received Pronunciation) IPA(key): /ˈfæk.tə.ɹi/, /ˈfæk.tɹi/
  • (General American) IPA(key): /ˈfæk.tə.ɹi/


factory (plural factories)

  1. (chiefly Scotland, now rare) The position or state of being a factor. [from 16th c.]
  2. (now historical) A trading establishment, especially set up by merchants working in a foreign country. [from 16th c.]
    • 1792, James Boswell, in Danziger & Brady (eds.), Boswell: The Great Biographer (Journals 1789–1795), Yale 1989, p. 184:
      We had here his curate, Mr. Furley, who had been nine years chaplain to the English factory at St. Petersburg [] .
  3. A building or other place where manufacturing takes place. [from 17th c.]
    Synonym: manufactory
  4. (UK, slang) A police station. [from 19th c.]
    • 2010, Harry Keeble, Kris Hollington, Crack House
      The guys all knew each other and we were having a jolly old chinwag as we marched them out of the house in front of their stunned neighbours and into a van we had called to take them all to the Factory (police station).
  5. A device which produces or manufactures something.
  6. A factory farm.
    chicken factory; pig factory
  7. (programming) In a computer program or library, a function, method, etc. which creates an object.
    • 2010, Sayed Ibrahim Hashimi, William Bartholomew, Inside the Microsoft Build Engine
      The task factory [] is the object that is responsible for creating instances of those tasks dynamically.

Derived terms

Related terms


  • Tok Pisin: faktori
  • Welsh: ffatri


Further reading

  • factory in Webster’s Revised Unabridged Dictionary, G. & C. Merriam, 1913.
  • factory in The Century Dictionary, New York, N.Y.: The Century Co., 1911.


factory (not comparable)

  1. (colloquial, of a configuration, part, etc.) Having come from the factory in the state it is currently in; original, stock.

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This article based on an article on Wiktionary. The list of authors can be seen in the page history there. The original work has been modified. This article is distributed under the terms of this license.