[ verb in-ter-lok, in-ter-lok; noun in-ter-lok ]
See synonyms for: interlockinterlocking on

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.

  1. Railroads. (of switches, signals, etc.) to operate together in a prearranged order.

verb (used with object)
  1. to lock one with another.

  2. to fit (parts) together to ensure coordinated action.

  1. Railroads. to arrange (switches, signals, etc.) to effect a predetermined sequence of movement.

  1. the fact or condition of interlocking or of being interlocked.

  2. the existence or an instance of an interlocking directorate.

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. a stretch fabric made with a circular knitting machine having two alternating sets of long and short needles.

  4. Movies. a device for synchronizing the action of a camera and sound recorder.

Origin of interlock

First recorded in 1625–35; inter- + lock1

Other words from interlock

  • in·ter·lock·er, noun
  • un·in·ter·locked, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2024

How to use interlock in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for interlock


  1. to join or be joined firmly, as by a mutual interconnection of parts

  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

  1. a closely knitted fabric

  1. (of fabric) closely knitted

Derived forms of interlock

  • interlocker, 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