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interlock

[verb in-ter-lok, in-ter-lok; noun in-ter-lok]
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verb (used without object)
  1. to fit into each other, as parts of machinery, so that all action is synchronized.
  2. to interweave or interlace, one with another: The branches of the trees interlock to form a natural archway.
  3. Railroads. (of switches, signals, etc.) to operate together in a prearranged order.
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verb (used with object)
  1. to lock one with another.
  2. to fit (parts) together to ensure coordinated action.
  3. Railroads. to arrange (switches, signals, etc.) to effect a predetermined sequence of movement.
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noun
  1. the fact or condition of interlocking or of being interlocked.
  2. interlocking directorate.
  3. a device for preventing a mechanism from being set in motion when another mechanism is in such a position that the two operating simultaneously might produce undesirable results.
  4. Also called ignition interlock. a device or system that prevents an automotive engine from starting until the seat belt for any occupied front seat is fastened.
  5. a stretch fabric made with a circular knitting machine having two alternating sets of long and short needles.
  6. Movies. a device for synchronizing the action of a camera and sound recorder.
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Origin of interlock

First recorded in 1625–35; inter- + lock1
Related formsin·ter·lock·er, nounun·in·ter·locked, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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British Dictionary definitions for interlocking

interlock

verb (ˌɪntəˈlɒk)
  1. to join or be joined firmly, as by a mutual interconnection of parts
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noun (ˈɪntəˌlɒk)
  1. the act of interlocking or the state of being interlocked
  2. a device, esp one operated electromechanically, used in a logic circuit or electrical safety system to prevent an activity being initiated unless preceded by certain events
  3. a closely knitted fabric
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adjective (ˈɪntəˌlɒk)
  1. (of fabric) closely knitted
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Derived Formsinterlocker, noun
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 interlocking

interlock

v.

1630s, from inter- + lock. Related: Interlocked; interlocking. As a noun, attested by 1874.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper