lock·​out | \ˈläk-ˌau̇t \

Definition of lockout 

(Entry 1 of 2)

: the withholding of employment by an employer and the whole or partial closing of the business establishment in order to gain concessions from or resist demands of employees

lock out


Definition of lock out (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: to subject (a body of employees) to a lockout

Examples of lockout in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Among other things, security experts are discussing use of some type of digital lockout device, intended to prevent unauthorized engine starts. Andrew Tangel, WSJ, "Stolen Horizon Air Plane Believed Deliberately Crashed," 20 Aug. 2018 David Monahan, a 34-year-old service tech in Lowell, was diagnosed with a cancerous tumor in his bladder less than a week before the lockout and is scheduled for surgery at the beginning of August. Katie Johnston, BostonGlobe.com, "Locked out, National Grid workers grapple with loss of income, health insurance," 11 July 2018 The lockout was lifted at Blankner K-8 School a short time later. Michael Williams, OrlandoSentinel.com, "Police investigating suspicious package at Boone High School," 24 Apr. 2018 Unlike the lockout fears, the women surge certainly held steady in the results. Harry Enten, CNN, "'Top-two' fears appear overblown and women dominate in Tuesday's primary elections," 6 June 2018 Then there are the three Southern California districts where the top two lockouts for Democrats could happen: In Orange County’s open 39th District (where Ed Royce is retiring), either party could actually be locked out of the general election. Ed Kilgore, Daily Intelligencer, "There Is a Lot at Stake in California’s Primaries Today," 5 June 2018 Lebanon High School is under lockdown, and all other schools in the small Linn County city are on lockout, according to the local school district. Jim Ryan, OregonLive.com, "Lebanon High on lockdown, other schools on lockout; no shooting reported," 18 May 2018 Hawthorne Elementary School, 1111 Maitland Drive, was placed on a precautionary lockout after an elderly man reportedly asked a TruGreen lawn-care service technician to shoot him with his own gun shortly before noon Tuesday, April 10. Jim Riccioli, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Multiple suicide calls provided tense moments for Waukesha police and schools," 12 Apr. 2018 The Democrats’ House campaign arm, which had become a punching bag for conservatives and liberal insurgents alike, had one job Tuesday: avoid a lockout in California. David Weigel, Washington Post, "Slow waves, high turnout and no lockouts: Four lessons from this week’s primaries," 7 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'lockout.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of lockout


1853, in the meaning defined above


1853, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for lockout

Last Updated

12 Dec 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for lockout

The first known use of lockout was in 1853

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More Definitions for lockout



English Language Learners Definition of lockout

: a situation in which an employer tries to force workers to accept certain conditions by refusing to let them come to work until those conditions are accepted


lock·​out | \ˈläk-ˌau̇t \

Legal Definition of lockout 

: the withholding of employment by an employer in order to gain concessions from or resist demands of employees

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More from Merriam-Webster on lockout

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with lockout

Spanish Central: Translation of lockout

Nglish: Translation of lockout for Spanish Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about lockout

Comments on lockout

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


a knickknack or trinket

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