/ki / (say kee)

noun (plural keys)
1. an instrument for fastening or opening a lock by moving its bolt.
2. a means of attaining, understanding, solving, etc.: the key to a problem.
3. a book or the like containing the solutions or translations of material given elsewhere as exercises.
4. the system or pattern used to decode a cryptogram, etc.
5. a systematic explanation of abbreviations, symbols, etc., used in a dictionary, map, etc.
6. something that secures or controls entrance to a place.
7. a device used to open a can, by grasping the end of a removable strip and rolling it back.
8. a pin, bolt, wedge, or other piece inserted in a hole or space to lock or hold parts of a mechanism or structure together; a cotter.
9. Carpentry, etc. a small piece of wood, etc., set across the grain to prevent warping.
10. a contrivance for grasping and turning a bolt, nut, etc., as for winding a clockwork mechanism, for turning a valve or stopcock.
11. one of a set of levers or parts pressed in operating a keyboard, typewriter, etc.
12. Music
a. that part of the lever mechanism of a piano, organ, or woodwind instrument, which a finger operates.
b. the keynote or tonic of a scale.
c. the relationship perceived between all notes in a given unit of music to a single note or a keynote; tonality.
d. the principal tonality of a composition: symphony in the key of C minor.
13. tone or pitch, as of voice: to speak in a high key.
14. strain, or characteristic style, as of expression or thought.
15. degree of intensity, as of feeling or action.
16. Electricity
a. a device for opening and closing electrical contacts.
b. a hand-operated switching device ordinarily formed of concealed spring contacts with an exposed handle or push-button, capable of switching one or more parts of a circuit.
c. a hand-operated device for the transmission of morse code.
17. Botany, Zoology a systematic tabular classification of the significant characteristics of the members of a group of organisms to facilitate identification and comparison.
18. Masonry a keystone.
19. Building Trades any grooving or roughness on a surface to improve bond.
20. the average of the tone and colour values of a painting or a photograph, being high if the tones are kept near white and the colours pale and bright, and low if the tones are kept near black and the colours dark and dull.
21. samara.
22. chief; major; fundamental; indispensable: the key industries of a nation.
23. Photography predominant; determining tonal value: the key tone of a photograph.
24. (in advertising, journalism, etc.) identifying: a key line; a key number.
verb (keyed, keying)
verb (t)
25. to adjust (one's speech, actions, etc.) as if to a particular key, in order to come into harmony with external factors, as the level of understanding of one's hearers.
26. Also, key in. to enter (data) into a computer by means of a keyboard
27. Music to regulate the key or pitch of.
28. to fasten, secure, or adjust with a key, wedge, or the like, as parts of a mechanism.
29. to provide with a key or keys.
30. Also, key up. (in the layout of publications) to identify by symbols the position on the layout (of artwork, copy, etc.).
31. to give (an advertisement) a letter or number to enable replies to it to be identified.
32. to lock with, or as with, a key.
33. Masonry to provide (an arch, etc.) with a keystone.
34. Building Trades
a. to prepare (a surface) by grooving, roughening, etc., to receive paint.
b. to cause (paint, etc.) to adhere to a surface.
35. Colloquial to scratch (the windscreen or duco of a car) using the sharp end of a key.
verb (i)
36. Building Trades (of paint, etc.) to adhere to a surface.
37. given the key, Prison Colloquial declared a habitual criminal.
38. key up, to bring to a particular degree of intensity of feeling, excitement, energy, etc.
{Middle English key(e), kay(e), Old English cǣg}
keyer, noun
/ki / (say kee)

noun (plural keys)
1. (in the Caribbean area) a reef or low island; cay.
2. a long low peninsula artificially created in a low-lying marshy or estuarine area, on which houses are built, most of which have water frontages.
{Spanish cayo}

Australian English dictionary. 2014.


Look at other dictionaries:

  • Key — (k[=e]), n. [OE. keye, key, kay, AS. c[ae]g.] 1. An instrument by means of which the bolt of a lock is shot or drawn; usually, a removable metal instrument fitted to the mechanism of a particular lock and operated by turning in its place. [1913… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • KEY — ist das englische Wort für Schlüssel, und damit Bestandteil von Anglizismen: Key Account Key Account Manager etc. Key steht im Sinne von Cay für eine kleine flache Insel: insbesondere die Florida Keys, Inselkette im US Bundesstaat Florida, USA:… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Key — may refer to: Building* Key, Carpentry: timber or metal wedges used across or between two or more members to act as a tightening agent. * Key, Painting: to rough the surface of previous coats of paint to allow a secure bond for the next or top… …   Wikipedia

  • Key — ist das englische Wort für Schlüssel, und damit Bestandteil von Anglizismen: Key Account Key Account Manager etc. Key steht im Sinne von Cay für eine kleine flache Insel: insbesondere die Florida Keys, Inselkette im US Bundesstaat Florida, USA:… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • KeY — is a formal software development tool that aims to integrate design, implementation, formal specification, and formal verification of object oriented software. It supports programs written in Java (more precisely: in a superset of Java Card) and… …   Wikipedia

  • key — key1 [kē] n. pl. keys [ME keye < OE cæge, akin to OFris kei, kēia, to secure, guard] 1. an instrument, usually of metal, for moving the bolt of a lock and thus locking or unlocking something 2. any of several instruments or mechanical devices… …   English World dictionary

  • key to — ˈkey to [transitive] usually passive [present tense I/you/we/they key to he/she/it keys to present participle keying to past tense keyed to …   Useful english dictionary

  • Key — Key, v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Keved}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Keying}.] 1. To fasten or secure firmly; to fasten or tighten with keys or wedges. Francis. [1913 Webster] 2. (Computers) To enter (text, data) using keys, especially those on a keyboard; to… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • key — adj: of vital importance (as in a business organization) esp. so as to be specially insured to the benefit of an employer key man key employee insurance Merriam Webster’s Dictionary of Law. Merriam Webster. 1996 …   Law dictionary

  • key — Ⅰ. key [1] ► NOUN (pl. keys) 1) a small piece of shaped metal which is inserted into a lock and rotated to open or close it. 2) an instrument for grasping and turning a screw, peg, or nut. 3) a lever depressed by the finger in playing an… …   English terms dictionary

  • key — key, a. Essential; most important; as, the key fact in the inquiry; the president was the key player inthe negotiations. [PJC] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

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