Meaning of LOCK in English


/ lɒk; NAmE lɑːk/ verb , noun

■ verb


to fasten sth with a lock; to be fastened with a lock :

[ vn ]

Did you lock the door?

[ v ]

This suitcase doesn't lock.


[ vn + adv. / prep. ] to put sth in a safe place and lock it :

She locked her passport and money in the safe.


lock (sth) (in / into / around, etc. sth) | lock (sth) (together) to become or make sth become fixed in one position and unable to move :

[ v ]

The brakes locked and the car skidded.

[ vn ]

He locked his helmet into position with a click.


[ vn ] be locked in / into sth to be involved in a difficult situation, an argument, a disagreement, etc. :

The two sides are locked into a bitter dispute.

She felt locked in a loveless marriage.


[ vn ] be locked together / in sth to be held very tightly by sb :

They were locked in a passionate embrace.


[ vn ] ( computing ) to prevent computer data from being changed or looked at by sb without permission :

These files are locked to protect confidentiality.


- lock horns (with sb) (over sth)


- lock sb/sth away

- lock sb / yourself in ( ... )

- lock onto sth

- lock sb / yourself out (of sth)

- lock sb out

- lock up | lock sth up

- lock sb up / away

- lock sth up / away

■ noun


[ C ] a device that keeps a door window, lid, etc. shut, usually needing a key to open it :

She turned the key in the lock.

—see also combination lock


[ C ] a device with a key that prevents a vehicle or machine from being used :

a bicycle lock

a steering lock


[ U ] a state in which the parts of a machine, etc. do not move


[ U , sing. ] ( BrE ) ( on a car, etc. ) the amount that the front wheels can be turned in one direction or the other in order to turn the vehicle :

I had the steering wheel on full lock (= I had turned it as far as it would turn) .


[ C ] a section of canal or river with a gate at either end, in which the water level can be changed so that boats can move from one level of the canal or river to another


[ C ] a few hairs that hang or lie together on your head :

John brushed a lock of hair from his eyes.


locks [ pl. ] ( literary ) a person's hair :

She shook her long, flowing locks.


[ C ] ( in rugby ) a player in the second row of the scrum


[ sing. ] a ~ (on sth) ( NAmE ) total control of sth :

One company had a virtual lock on all orange juice sales in the state.

—see also armlock , headlock


- lock, stock and barrel

- (keep sth / put sth / be) under lock and key

—more at pick verb



verb and noun senses 1 to 5 noun senses 8 to 9 Old English loc , of Germanic origin; related to German Loch hole.

noun senses 6 to 7 Old English locc , of Germanic origin; related to Dutch lok , German Locke , possibly also to the verb lock .

Oxford Advanced Learner's English Dictionary.      Оксфордский английский словарь для изучающик язык на продвинутом уровне.