linchpin


linch·pin

noun \ˈlinch-ˌpin\

: a person or thing that holds something together : the most important part of a complex situation or system

Full Definition of LINCHPIN

1
:  a locking pin inserted crosswise (as through the end of an axle or shaft)
2
:  one that serves to hold together parts or elements that exist or function as a unit <the linchpin in the defense's case>

Variants of LINCHPIN

linch·pin also lynch·pin \ˈlinch-ˌpin\

Examples of LINCHPIN

  1. This witness is the linchpin of the defense's case.

Origin of LINCHPIN

Middle English lynspin, from lyns linchpin (from Old English lynis) + pin; akin to Middle High German luns linchpin
First Known Use: 13th century

Other Mechanical Engineering Terms

centrifuge, differential, flange, lathe, pinion, plenum, ratchet, traction

Browse

Next Word in the Dictionary: linchpinned
Previous Word in the Dictionary: linch ()
All Words Near: linchpin

Seen & Heard

What made you want to look up linchpin? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

Get Our Free Apps
Voice Search, Favorites,
Word of the Day, and More
Join Us on FB & Twitter
Get the Word of the Day and More