Children's, Intermediate and Advanced Online English Dictionary & Thesaurus

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key1

 
 
pronunciation:
ki
parts of speech:
noun, adjective, transitive verb
phrases:
key up
features:
Word Combinations (noun, adjective, verb), Word Explorer
part of speech: noun
definition 1: a notched or grooved object, usu. metal, that can open or close locks.
I lost the key to the back door.
 
similar words:
latchkey, master key, passkey, skeleton key
definition 2: something that allows entry, obtainment, or understanding.
Knowing someone in the company was her key to getting a job interview.His persuasiveness was the key to his success as a politician.This well-written paragraph was the key to my understanding of the article.
synonyms:
passport
similar words:
agent, instrument, means, ticket
definition 3: a list that provides an explanation of codes or symbols.
The map key shows that a half inch on the map represents one hundred miles.
synonyms:
legend
similar words:
annotation, gloss, guide, handbook, manual
definition 4: a button or lever on a machine or musical instrument that, when pressed, performs a function.
You can press any key on the keyboard to activate the computer.Some of the keys on the piano are sticking.
similar words:
button, lever
definition 5: the governing tone of the scale in a musical work.
The symphony is written in the key of D minor.
synonyms:
keynote, tonic
similar words:
note, pitch, tonality, tone
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part of speech: adjective
definition: main; primary; essential.
She made the key point in the discussion and gave us something we could finally all agree on.Yeast, flour, and water are the key components in bread.The rain was a key factor in the tragedy that occurred that night.Skill at listening is key to being an effective counselor.
synonyms:
cardinal, central, chief, essential, fundamental, leading, main, primary
antonyms:
peripheral
similar words:
capital, critical, crucial, great, important, major, pivotal, prime
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part of speech: transitive verb
inflections: keys, keying, keyed
definition 1: to regulate, coordinate, or adjust so that there is harmony or an appropriate match with something else.
The lesson is keyed to the particular level of the students.The President's speech was keyed to the political climate.
synonyms:
adjust, fit, gear, regulate, suit
similar words:
adapt, aim, coordinate, direct
definition 2: to provide with keys.
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phrase: key up
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  car, instrument, music