< /laʊz/, (especially collectively) Lao for 1.
- a member of a people of Laos and northern Thailand.
- the language of these people, belonging to the Thai group of languages.
- a republic in SE Asia: first united as the kingdom of Lan Xang (“million elephants”) in 1353, after being a province of the Khmer Empire for about four centuries; made part of French Indochina in 1893 and gained independence in 1949; became a republic in 1975. It is generally forested and mountainous, with the Mekong River running almost the whole length of the W border. Official language: Laotian. Religion: Buddhist majority, tribal religions. Currency: kip. Capital: Vientiane. Pop: 6 695 166 (2013 est). Area: 236 800 sq km (91 429 sq miles)Official name: People’s Democratic Republic of Laos
- another name for Laotian
- Laos (international car registration)
Southeast Asian land, from the name of legendary founder Lao. Related: Laotian. Mountainous, landlocked republic in Southeast Asia, bordered by Burma to the northwest, China to the northeast, Vietnam to the east, Cambodia to the south, and Thailand to the west. Its capital and largest city is Vientiane.