from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. Plural form of turnkey.
  • v. Third-person singular simple present indicative form of turnkey.


Sorry, no etymologies found.


  • "Monsieur de Chanlay," said the governor, bowing, "I come to know if you have passed a good night, and are satisfied with the fare of the house and the conduct of the employés" -- thus M. de Launay, in his politeness, called the turnkeys and jailers.

    Une fille du régent. English

  • He was quoted as saying, “schools and schoolmasters, as we have them today, are not popular as places of education and teachers, but rather prisons and turnkeys in which children are kept to prevent them disturbing and chaperoning their parent.”

    7 Highly Successful High School Dropouts

  • She was a hired nurse, the wife of one of the turnkeys, and her countenance expressed all those bad qualities which often characterise that class.

    Chapter 4

  • But I was doomed to live; and, in two months, found myself as awaking from a dream, in a prison, stretched on a wretched bed, surrounded by gaolers, turnkeys, bolts, and all the miserable apparatus of a dungeon.

    Chapter 4

  • This is not fair on the staff who are called upon to act merely as turnkeys, processing people from overcrowded jail to overcrowded jail.

    Another Form Of Relief « POLICE INSPECTOR BLOG

  • Remember too late you forgot to evacuate the turnkeys.

    "There is no other way to describe it. He butchered her. He killed her in cold blood while she begged for her life."

  • The sound of doors opening and shutting, the creaking of gratings on their hinges, a tumult in the guard-house, the hoarse shouts of the turnkeys, the shock of musket-butts on the pavement of the courts, reached his ears.

    Les Miserables

  • We are not born to the treadmill, or to servitude and slavery, or to banishment; but the executioner has done no more for that criminal than nature may do tomorrow for the judge, and will certainly do, in her own good time, for judge and jury, counsel and witnesses, turnkeys, hangman, and all.

    Miscellaneous Papers

  • ‘No vay,’ said Mr. Weller, ‘unless’ — and a gleam of intelligence lighted up his countenance as he sank his voice to a whisper, and applied his mouth to the ear of his offspring — ‘unless it is getting him out in a turn – up bedstead, unbeknown to the turnkeys, Sammy, or dressin’ him up like

    The Posthumous Papers of the Pickwick Club

  • Mr. Weller, who stationed himself at the back of the chair, whispered that the sitting was merely another term for undergoing an inspection by the different turnkeys, in order that they might know prisoners from visitors.

    The Posthumous Papers of the Pickwick Club


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