[ lach-kee ]
See synonyms for latchkey on
noun,plural latch·keys.
  1. a key for releasing a latch or springlock, especially on an outer door.

Origin of latchkey

First recorded in 1815–25; latch + key1

Words Nearby latchkey Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use latchkey in a sentence

  • Still worse was the remembrance of Mrs. Ellsworth's latchkey, the keeping of which had been accidental at first.

    The Second Latchkey | Charles Norris Williamson and Alice Muriel Williamson
  • The central figure, wearing pince-nez and waving a latchkey, is formidable rather than repellent.

British Dictionary definitions for latchkey


/ (ˈlætʃˌkiː) /

  1. a key for an outside door or gate, esp one that lifts a latch

    • a supposed freedom from restrictions

    • (as modifier): a latchkey existence

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