a cotter having a split end that is spread after being pushed through a hole to prevent it from working loose.
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Origin of cotter pin
First recorded in 1890–95
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019
British Dictionary definitions for cotter pin
a split pin secured, after passing through holes in the parts to be attached, by spreading the ends
a tapered pin threaded at the smaller end and secured by a nut after insertion
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