- 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.
- 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: often in comb.: headlock
Origin of lockMiddle 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 luctari, to struggle
- to fasten (a door, trunk, etc.) by means of a lock
- to keep from going in or out by or as by means of a lock; 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 make (a bid, etc.) firm, definite, or final: with in
- 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: the dog's jaws locked on its prey
- to jam, as gears
- to pass through the locks of a canal
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
Origin of lockwith 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
- a curl, tress, or ringlet of hair
- [pl.]Old Poet. the hair of the head
- a tuft of wool, cotton, etc.
Origin of lockMiddle English lokke from Old English loc (akin to German locke): basic sense “a bend, twist”: Indo-European base as in lock
- 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.
verblocked, lock·ing, locks
- 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 clasp or link firmly; intertwine or interlock: 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.
- To invest (funds) in such a way that they cannot easily be converted into cash.
- To arrange or secure (an interest rate) for a loan.
- Computers 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 or jammed; 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 of lockMiddle English lok from Old English loc bolt, bar
- a. A length or curl of hair; a tress.b. often locks The hair of the head.
- A small wisp or tuft, as of wool or cotton.
Origin of lockMiddle English lok from Old English loc, locc
- A surname.
- (no longer productive) action or proceeding, practice, ritual
From Middle English -lok, -lak, -lac, from Old English -lāc (suffix denoting activity or action), from Proto-Germanic *laiką (“play, sport, activity”), from Proto-Indo-European *leig-, *loig- (“to bounce, shake, make tremble”).
The etymology of the suffix is the same as that of the noun lāc "play, sport", also "sacrifice, offering", corresponding to obsolete Modern English lake (dialectal laik) "sport, fun, glee, game", cognate to Gothic laiks "dance", Old Norse leikr "game, sport" and Old High German leih "play, song, melody" (> Old French lai "song, lyric, poem, lay"). Ultimately, the word descends from Proto-Germanic *laikaz. Old English līcian ("to please", Modern English like) is from the same root. In modern English, the noun has been reintroduced through the cognate Swedish lek as a specialist term referring to mating behaviour.
Thus, the suffix originates as a second member in nominal compounds, and referred to "actions or proceedings, practice, ritual" identical with the noun lāc "play, sport, performance" (obsolete Modern English lake "fun, sport, glee", obsolete or dialectal Modern German Leich).