- a state in which progress is impossible, as in a dispute, produced by the counteraction of opposing forces; standstill; stalemate: The union and management reached a deadlock over fringe benefits.
- a maximum-security cell for the solitary confinement of a prisoner.
- to bring or come to a deadlock.
Origin of deadlock
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
1. standoff, impasse, draw.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for deadlock
John Avlon talks to a former FBI hostage negotiator about how to break the deadlock.Shutdown Crisis: We Need a Hostage Negotiator
October 6, 2013
Billionaire investor expresses impatient with deadlock, but says investors expect limited irrationality from D.C.Warren Buffett Slams Debt Ceiling Drama as "Damn Dumb"
September 20, 2013
The problem is it may take years—even decades—until they reach a deadlock too painful to endure.How to End the War in Syria
Irena L. Sargsyan
August 13, 2013
The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell by hundreds of points in response to the deadlock in Washington.Stock Market Ignores Washington Brinksmanship Due to Strong Economy
December 21, 2012
Both Obama and Romney are deploying a small army of lawyers in case of a deadlock or voting irregularities.Obama, Romney Lawyers Spoiling for Recount as Election Day Unfolds
November 6, 2012
However, one was for Bassett and t'other for Ellis, so the deadlock wa'n't broken.The Depot Master
Joseph C. Lincoln
The situation, thanks to Martinez's stoutness, had reached a deadlock.The Historical Nights' Entertainment
When the tuna is raised so high he will refuse to come any higher, and then there is a deadlock.Tales of Fishes
Why a deadlock that has lasted over a quarter of a million years?Masters of Space
Edward Elmer Smith
There'd be a deadlock when a conclave started checking their claims.The Best Made Plans
Everett B. Cole
- a state of affairs in which further action between two opposing forces is impossible; stalemate
- a tie between opposite sides in a contest
- a lock having a bolt that can be opened only with a key
- to bring or come to a deadlock
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Word Origin and History for deadlock
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper