key

4 ENTRIES FOUND:

1key

noun \ˈkē\

Definition of KEY

1
a :  a usually metal instrument by which the bolt of a lock is turned
b :  any of various devices having the form or function of such a key
2
a :  a means of gaining or preventing entrance, possession, or control
b :  an instrumental or deciding factor
3
a :  something that gives an explanation or identification or provides a solution <the key to a riddle>
b :  a list of words or phrases giving an explanation of symbols or abbreviations
c :  an aid to interpretation or identification :  clue
d :  an arrangement of the salient characters of a group of plants or animals or of taxa designed to facilitate identification
e :  a map legend
4
a (1) :  cotter pin (2) :  cotter
b :  a keystone in an arch
c :  a small piece of wood or metal used as a wedge or for preventing motion between parts
5
a :  one of the levers of a keyboard musical instrument that actuates the mechanism and produces the tones
b :  a lever that controls a vent in the side of a woodwind instrument or a valve in a brass instrument
c :  a part to be depressed by a finger that serves as one unit of a keyboard
6
:  samara
7
:  a system of tones and harmonies generated from a hierarchical scale of seven tones based on a tonic <the key of G major>
8
a :  characteristic style or tone
b :  the tone or pitch of a voice
c :  the predominant tone of a photograph with respect to its lightness or darkness
9
:  a decoration or charm resembling a key
10
:  a small switch for opening or closing an electric circuit <a telegraph key>
11
:  the set of instructions governing the encipherment and decipherment of messages
12
:  a free-throw area in basketball
keyed \ˈkēd\ adjective
key·less \ˈkē-ləs\ adjective

Origin of KEY

Middle English, from Old English ̄g; akin to OldFrisian kēi key
First Known Use: before 12th century

Other Cartography Terms

Robinson projection, benchmark, plat, projection, topography

Rhymes with KEY

b, be, bee, c, cay, cee, Cree, d, dee, Dee, dree, e, fee, flea, flee, free, g, gee, ghee, glee, gree, he, Key, knee, lea, lee, me, mi, p, pea, pee, plea, pree, quay, re, Rhee, scree, sea, see, she, si, ski, spree, sri, t, tea, tee, the, thee, three, ti, tree, twee, Twi, v, vee, we, wee, whee, ye, z, zee

2key

verb

: to enter (information) by using the keys of a computer, typewriter, etc.

: to have the most important part in (something)

Full Definition of KEY

transitive verb
1
:  to lock with or as if with a key :  fasten: as
a :  to secure (as a pulley on a shaft) by a key
b :  to finish off (an arch) by inserting a keystone
2
:  to regulate the musical pitch of
3
:  to bring into harmony or conformity :  make appropriate :  attune <remarks keyed to a situation>
4
:  to identify (a biological specimen) by a key
5
:  to provide with identifying or explanatory cross-references <instructions keyed to accompanying drawings — John Gartner>
6
:  to make nervous, tense, or excited —usually used with up
7
:  keyboard —often used with in
8
:  to be essential to :  play the most important part in <defense keyed the victory>
intransitive verb
1
:  to use a key
2
:  to observe the position or movement of an opposing player in football in order to anticipate the play —usually used with on
3
:  keyboard

Examples of KEY

  1. The changes to the manuscript are being keyed by the typist.
  2. <her response was perfectly keyed to the situation>

First Known Use of KEY

14th century

3key

adjective

: extremely important

Full Definition of KEY

:  important, fundamental <key issues>

Examples of KEY

  1. He's a key player in the organization.
  2. The key question is Can we afford it?.
  3. Underline key words and phrases as you read.
  4. Their votes were key in getting the bill passed.

First Known Use of KEY

1913

4key

noun

Definition of KEY

:  a low island or reef; specifically :  any of the coral islets off the southern coast of Florida

Origin of KEY

Spanish cayo, from Taino
First Known Use: 1697

Other Geology Terms

anthracite, boulder, cwm, erratic, igneous, intrusive, mesa, sedimentary, silt, swale

5key

noun

Definition of KEY

slang
:  a kilogram especially of marijuana or heroin

Origin of KEY

by shortening & alteration from kilo
First Known Use: 1968

Other Drug/Tobacco Terms

controlled, flake, herb, sodden

Key

biographical name \ˈkē\

Definition of KEY

Francis Scott 1779–1843 Am. lawyer & author of The Star-Spangled Banner

Key

biographical name

Definition of KEY

John (Phillip) 1961– prime min. of New Zealand (2008–)

key

noun    (Concise Encyclopedia)

In music, system of pitches and harmonies generated from a scale of seven tones, one of which is predominantly important. Keys are a basic element of tonality and represent an outgrowth of modal music (see church mode). When a given piece is said to be “in C,” C is its “tonic,” or central tone. Most Western music from about 1700 until about 1900 is characterized by use of the 12 major and 12 minor keys of the tonal system.

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