turnkey

[ turn-kee ]
/ ˈtɜrnˌki /

noun, plural turn·keys.

a person who has charge of the keys of a prison; jailer.

adjective

Also turn-key. of, relating to, or resulting from an arrangement under which a private contractor designs and constructs a project, building, etc., for sale when completely ready for occupancy or operation: turn-key housing, turnkey contract.
fully equipped; ready to go into operation: a turnkey business.

RELATED WORDS

Origin of turnkey

First recorded in 1645–55; turn + key1
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for turnkey

British Dictionary definitions for turnkey

turnkey

/ (ˈtɜːnˌkiː) /

noun

archaic a keeper of the keys, esp in a prison; warder or jailer

adjective

denoting a project, as in civil engineering, in which a single contractor has responsibility for the complete job from the start to the time of installation or occupancy
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 turnkey

turnkey


adj.

1650s, "jailer," from turn (v.) + key (n.). In reference to a job that only has to be done once, it is recorded from 1934. The notion is of locking up afterward.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper