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[dred-loks] /ˈdrɛdˌlɒks/
noun, (used with a plural verb)
a hair style, especially among Rastafarians, in which the hair is worn in long, ropelike locks.
Origin of dreadlocks
1955-60; dread + lock2 + -s3 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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plural noun
hair worn in the Rastafarian style of long matted or tightly curled strands
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
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Word Origin and History for dreadlocks

1960, from dread + locks (see lock (n.2)). The style supposedly based on that of East African warriors. So called from the dread they presumably aroused in beholders, but Rastafarian dread (1974) also has a sense of "fear of the Lord," expressed in part as alienation from contemporary society.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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