from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A mechanical device used to control passage from one public area to another, typically consisting of several horizontal arms supported by and radially projecting from a central vertical post and allowing only the passage of individuals on foot.
  • n. A similar structure that permits the passage of an individual once a charge has been paid or that counts the number of individuals passing through.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A rotating mechanical device that controls and counts passage between public areas, especially one that only allows passage after a charge has been made.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A revolving frame in a footpath, preventing the passage of horses or cattle, but admitting that of persons; a turnpike. See turnpike, n., 1.
  • n. A similar arrangement for registering the number of persons passing through a gateway, doorway, or the like.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A post surmounted by four horizontal arms which move round as a person passes through; a turnpike.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. a gate consisting of a post that acts as a pivot for rotating arms; set in a passageway for controlling the persons entering


turn (rotating) + stile (gate) (Wiktionary)


  • They drew three million customers this year, led the league in turnstile clicks, in a place where just a few miles either direction, the main population base is crows.

    Cardinals fighting fate ... again

  • In real life, however, Afghanistan is as Richard Nixon put it in The Real War, "has long been a cockpit of great-power intrigue for the same reason that it used to be called the turnstile of Asia's fate".

    Ehsan Azari Stanizai: Partition of Afghanistan Is a Quixotic Adventure

  • Beyond the turnstile was a passage with walls painted white.


  • When I gestured to my Trasportation Access Pass, he made a rude gesture and waved to the coin turnstile.

    November 24th, 2003

  • Immediately opposite to the turnstile was the open door of a large building; flags surmounted it, and at each side was a large proclamation in red and white.

    Punch, or the London Charivari, Vol. 147, September 16, 1914

  • The stranger advancing from the turnstile was a decent-looking person, dressed in dark, tight-fitting clothes, and making no unnecessary or ostentatious display of linen, for his coat was buttoned tightly to the chin.

    Aurora Floyd. A Novel

  • According to the Post, a judge has ordered the M.T.A. to open its hearings on minor violations, such as turnstile-jumping.

    Mid-Day Crime Waves: 'The Precious of Corrections'

  • We now have the quieter read that as smaller kind of turnstile returns.

    B.O. In The Fall

  • Pattillo home a "turnstile" since learning of his death. - News

  • I'm not sure fast-paced New Yorkers could stand for the kind of turnstile gridlock that could ensue, in the way that Bay Area or DC riders might be able to.


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  • Perhaps he is in charge of the turnstile, the palm of his hand constantly grey from receiving pennies.

    - Peter Reading, C, 1984

    July 4, 2008