turn·​pike | \ ˈtərn-ˌpīk How to pronounce turnpike (audio) \

Definition of turnpike

1a(1) : a road (such as an expressway) for the use of which tolls are collected
(2) : a road formerly maintained as a turnpike
b : a main road especially : a paved highway with a rounded surface
2 : tollgate

Keep scrolling for more

Examples of turnpike in a Sentence

the turnpike was jammed with people heading south for the long weekend

Recent Examples on the Web

The woman was riding her bike on the turnpike at 5:30 a.m. near the entrance to Route 17 when the truck hit her, knocking her off her bicycle, police said. Zach Murdock, courant.com, "Glastonbury police searching for silver Ford F-150 involved in early morning hit-and-run," 28 Aug. 2019 Troop E, which primarily patrolled the turnpike, was disbanded in spring 2018, with several troopers eventually brought up on charges. Matt Rocheleau, BostonGlobe.com, "How one trooper’s alleged racist remark ignited the State Police overtime scandal," 17 Aug. 2019 Meanwhile, at the other end of the turnpike, the focus is on the helmet. Jon Wilner, The Denver Post, "Head trauma research: Colorado projects (funded by the Pac-12) aim to reduce, and understand, concussions," 15 Aug. 2019 Meanwhile, at the other end of the turnpike, the focus is on the helmet. Jon Wilner, The Mercury News, "Head trauma research: Colorado projects (funded by the Pac-12) aim to reduce, and understand, concussions," 14 Aug. 2019 But those traveling east on Douglas Road have to crane their necks to see approaching eastbound traffic coming over a hill on the turnpike. Peter Marteka, courant.com, "Glastonbury officials nearing completion of Douglas Road and Sycamore Street intersection study," 2 Aug. 2019 The photos found by Motherboard appear to be from a 2017 set of images collected by the company at a Pennsylvania turnpike. Cat Zakrzewski, Washington Post, "The Technology 202: Google's lobbying shake-up signals its readying for Washington battle," 14 June 2019 The turnpike's westbound lanes remained closed as the investigation continued. Loyd Brumfield, Dallas News, "Two drivers killed in wrong-way collision on Bush Turnpike in Richardson," 27 June 2019 According to the patrol, the victim was driving a 2016 Mercedes-Benz Sprinter van east on the turnpike in Sandusky County at about 11 a.m. and was behind a 2019 International semi-trailer. Cliff Pinckard, cleveland.com, "Driver on Ohio Turnpike hit, killed by debris after semi strikes bridge," 10 July 2019

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

See More

First Known Use of turnpike

1678, in the meaning defined at sense 2

History and Etymology for turnpike

Middle English turnepike revolving frame bearing spikes and serving as a barrier, from turnen to turn + pike

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about turnpike

Statistics for turnpike

Last Updated

12 Sep 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for turnpike

The first known use of turnpike was in 1678

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for turnpike



English Language Learners Definition of turnpike

US : a major road that you must pay to use


turn·​pike | \ ˈtərn-ˌpīk How to pronounce turnpike (audio) \

Kids Definition of turnpike

: a road that people must pay a toll to use

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on turnpike

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with turnpike

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for turnpike

Spanish Central: Translation of turnpike

Nglish: Translation of turnpike for Spanish Speakers

Comments on turnpike

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


concealment of treason or felony

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

The Exceptions Quiz III

  • one green toy robot amidst many red toy robots
  • Which of these words does not mean "nonsense"?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!


Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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