brain lock


variants or brain-lock or brainlock
chiefly US, informal
: a condition of temporary confusion, indecision, or mental paralysis
… an outbreak of brain lock has spread through the award's nominating committee …Seth Davis, Sports Illustrated, 31 Jan. 2000
But Hasselbeck wasn't the only Seahawk who suffered brainlock on Sunday; teammates made three or four other dumb plays …Peter King, Publishers Weekly, 25 Oct. 2004

Word History

First Known Use

1934, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of brain lock was in 1934

Love words?

You must — there are over 200,000 words in our free online dictionary, but you are looking for one that’s only in the Merriam-Webster Unabridged Dictionary.

Start your free trial today and get unlimited access to America's largest dictionary, with:

  • More than 250,000 words that aren't in our free dictionary
  • Expanded definitions, etymologies, and usage notes
  • Advanced search features
  • Ad free!

Dictionary Entries Near brain lock

Cite this Entry

“Brain lock.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 24 May. 2024.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!