• synonyms


[turn-buhk-uh l]
  1. a link or sleeve with a swivel at one end and an internal screw thread at the other, or with an internal screw thread at each end, used as a means of uniting or coupling, and of tightening, two parts, as the ends of two rods.
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Origin of turnbuckle

First recorded in 1695–1705; turn + buckle
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for turnbuckle

Historical Examples

  • Grasp the turnbuckle with a pair of tongs and place the end in the fire.

    The Library of Work and Play: Working in Metals

    Charles Conrad Sleffel

  • When the correct adjustment has been secured, the turnbuckle must be locked to prevent it from unscrewing.

  • A latch is not a turnbuckle, and no ironmonger's apprentice would confound the two.

  • Turnbuckle—A form of wire-tightener, consisting of a barrel into each end of which is screwed an eyebolt.

  • Wire, Locking—A wire used to prevent a turnbuckle barrel or other fitting from losing its adjustment.

British Dictionary definitions for turnbuckle


  1. an open mechanical sleeve usually having a swivel at one end and a thread at the other to enable a threaded wire or rope to be tightened
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Word Origin

C19: from turn + buckle
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 turnbuckle


1703, "catch or fastening for windows and shutters," from turn + buckle (n.). Meaning "coupling with internal screw threads for connecting metal rods" is attested from 1877.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper