- The definition of a lock is a device or a tool for holding or securing, or an enclosed canal with a series of gates that raise and lower ships to the level of adjoining water.
- An example of a lock is a hole for a key on a doorknob.
- An example of a lock is a mechanical device in the Panama Canal that uses gates to enclose changing water levels.
- Lock is defined as to secure, trap or fasten.
An example of to lock is to trap someone in a basement.
lock definition by Webster's New World
- a mechanical device furnished with a bolt and, usually, a spring, for fastening a door, strongbox, etc. by means of a key or combination
- anything that fastens something else and prevents it from opening, turning, etc.
- a locking together; jam
- an enclosed part of a canal, waterway, etc. equipped with gates so that the level of the water can be changed to raise or lower boats from one level to another
- the mechanism of a firearm used to explode the ammunition charge; gunlock
- air lock (sense )
- Slang a certainty; sure thing: our team is a lock to win the title
- Wrestling a hold in which a part of the opponent's body is firmly gripped: armlock
Origin: Middle English ; from Old English loc, a bolt, bar, enclosure, prison, akin to German loch, a hole, Old Norse lok, a lid, probably ; from Indo-European base an unverified form leug-, to bend from source Classical Greek lygos, supple twig, Classical Latin luctȧri, to struggle
- to fasten (a door, trunk, etc.) by means of a lock
- to keep from going in or out; shut (up, in or out); confine: locked in jail
- to fit closely; link; intertwine: to lock arms
- to embrace tightly
- to jam or force together so as to make immovable: locked gears, locked brakes
- to put in a fixed position: a throttle locked in the idle position
- ☆ to equip (a canal, etc.) with a lock or locks
- to move or pass (a ship) through a lock
- Printing to fasten (type elements) in a chase or on the bed of a press by means of quoins: often with up
- to become locked
- to be capable of being locked
- to intertwine or interlock; link together
- to close tightly and firmly: his jaws locked
- to jam, as gears
- to pass through the locks of a canal
- a curl, tress, or ringlet of hair
- Old Poet. the hair of the head
- a tuft of wool, cotton, etc.
Origin: Middle English lokke ; from Old English loc (akin to German locke): basic sense “a bend, twist”: Indo-European base as in lock
lock definition by American Heritage Dictionary
- A device operated by a key, combination, or keycard and used, as on a door, for holding, closing, or securing.
- A section of a waterway, such as a canal, closed off with gates, in which vessels in transit are raised or lowered by raising or lowering the water level of that section.
- A mechanism in a firearm for exploding the charge.
- An interlocking or entanglement of elements or parts.
- a. Sports A hold in wrestling or self-defense that is secured on a part of an opponent's body.b. A secure hold; control: The distributor has a lock on most of the market.c. A sure thing; a certainty: His promotion is a lock.
- a. To fasten the lock of: close and lock a drawer.b. To shut or make secure with or as if with locks: locked the house.
- To confine or exclude by or as if by means of a lock: locked the dog in for the night; locked the criminal up in a cell.
- To fix in place so that movement or escape is impossible; hold fast: The ship was locked in the ice through the winter. She felt that she had become locked into a binding agreement.
- a. To sight and follow (a moving target) automatically: locked the enemy fighter in the gun sights.b. To aim (a weapon or other device) at a moving target so as to follow it automatically: “The pilot had locked his targeting radar on the slow-moving frigate” (Ed Magnuson).
- To engage and interlock securely so as to be immobile.
- To clasp or link firmly; intertwine: locked arms and walked away.
- To bind in close struggle or battle: The two dogs were locked in combat.
- a. To equip (a waterway) with locks.b. To pass (a vessel) through a lock.
- Printing a. To secure (letterpress type) in a chase or press bed by tightening the quoins.b. To fasten (a curved plate) to the cylinder of a rotary press.
- To invest (funds) in such a way that they cannot easily be converted into cash.
- Computer Science a. To end the processing of (a magnetic tape or disk) in such a way as to deny access to its contents.b. To protect (a file) from changes or deletion.
- To become fastened by or as if by means of a lock: The door locks automatically when shut.
- To become entangled; interlock.
- To become rigid or immobile: The mechanism tends to lock in cold weather.
- To pass through a lock or locks in a waterway.
Origin: Middle English, from Old English loc, bolt, bar.
- lockˈa·ble adjective
pin-tumbler cylinder lock
- a. A length or curl of hair; a tress.b. The hair of the head. Often used in the plural.
- A small wisp or tuft, as of wool or cotton.
Origin: Middle English, from Old English locc.
lock - Phrases/Idioms
have a lock on
- to shut out by or as by locking the door against
- to keep (workers) from a place of employment in seeking to force terms upon them
lock, stock, and barrel
Etymology: with reference to the main parts of a gunInformal completely; entirely
- to fasten the doors of (a house, etc.) by means of locks
- to enclose or store in a locked container
- to put in jail
- to make certain to have the result one wants to have an election locked up
under lock and key
lock, stock, and barrel
under lock and key