- a person who has charge of the keys of a prison; jailer.
- Also turn-key. of, relating to, or resulting from an arrangement under which a private contractor designs and constructs a project, building, etc., for sale when completely ready for occupancy or operation: turn-key housing, turnkey contract.
- fully equipped; ready to go into operation: a turnkey business.
Origin of turnkey
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for turnkey
The turnkey gave it as the result of his experience that some of 'em was and some of 'em wasn't.
Upon which door the turnkey knocked with the handle of his key.
But the turnkey thanked them, and said, 'No, on the whole it was enough to see other people's children there.'
So, the turnkey thought about it all his life, and died intestate after all.
As it approached, there was not a Collegian within doors, nor a turnkey absent.
- archaic a keeper of the keys, esp in a prison; warder or jailer
- denoting a project, as in civil engineering, in which a single contractor has responsibility for the complete job from the start to the time of installation or occupancy
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 turnkey
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper