View synonyms for doorknob


[ dawr-nob, dohr- ]


  1. the handle or knob by which a door is opened or closed.

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Word History and Origins

Origin of doorknob1

First recorded in 1840–50; door + knob

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Example Sentences

Wireless headphones were only a thing we dreamed about every time our earbuds got yanked out of our ears when the cord got caught in a doorknob.

He was familiar with the neighborhood’s old homes and deftly helped customers who came searching for just the right screw or doorknob.

They wore blue medical gloves when they left their building, layering against doorknob germs.

I can’t believe it’s been over a year since I licked a doorknob!

More disinfectant wipes also are getting improperly flushed, utilities say, as people sanitize counters and doorknobs.

First, the ghost of his departed partner, Jacob Marley, comes calling, his face emerging from the doorknob.

First we laugh, then we begin to wonder why the man was so distracted that he didn't notice he'd taken the doorknob with him.

A powder-blue blazer with a patch reading “All-Time All-American” hung in a clear plastic bag from the closet doorknob.

Stage Three is again untimed, but tests athletes with obstacles like the Hang Climb and the Doorknob Grasper.

When she brought her master his breakfast on Sunday, she stood irresolutely holding the doorknob in her hand.

At the head of the steps he fumbled with his hand until he found a doorknob.

Her hand met its smooth surface, then clicked as the metallic joints came in contact with the doorknob.

Her hand was on her mother's doorknob, when the door swung open, and the mother's white face made her start back in affright.

He gripped the doorknob and shoved fiercely, but the stout metal panels were immovable.


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More About Doorknob

What is a doorknob?

A doorknob is the knob or handle used to open and close a door.

Doorknobs are common on doors, especially the inside doors of a home, such as the doors of different rooms and closets. These tend to be metal and shaped like a, well, knob—a part that sticks out and has a rounded end. Door handles in other shapes might be called doorknobs, but it’s more likely for them to be called door handles or just handles.

Another difference is that doorknobs typically turn. Door handles can turn, but they can also be fixed in place, like a vertical or horizontal bar.

A doorknob may also have a lock or keyhole to lock the door with.

Example: The mansion was so luxurious that even the doorknobs were made of solid gold.

Where does doorknob come from?

The first records of the term doorknob come from the 1840s. It’s simply a combination of door and knob.

Doorknobs are usually round and jut out from the door to allow for easy grabbing and turning. They’re such a common part of daily life that we often don’t notice them or think about them, but doorknobs are a relatively new development, only becoming common in most homes around the 1800s.

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How is doorknob used in real life?

Doorknobs are common features of doors, especially in homes.



Try using doorknob!

Is doorknob used correctly in the following sentence?

I was trapped in the room after the doorknob broke off the door.




door-key childdoorknock