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[lok-jaw] /ˈlɒkˌdʒɔ/
noun, Pathology
tetanus in which the jaws become firmly locked together; trismus.
Origin of lockjaw
1795-1805; lock1 + jaw1 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for lockjaw
Historical Examples
  • Didn't you say no one could get up or down the lockjaw when the tide is up?

  • I hope I won't have lockjaw—it's harder on a woman than it is on a man anytime.

  • Ma passed the pickles to me this morning, and I took one mouthful, and like to had the lockjaw.

    Peck's Bad Boy and His Pa George W. Peck
  • I'm afraid this hospital nursing is going to be a lockjaw business.

    The Christian Hall Caine
  • By this afternoon the country will be in the lockjaw paralysis of panic—unless we can stem the tide.

    Destiny Charles Neville Buck
  • Another, a victim of lockjaw, only yielded to the influence of chloroform.

    Woman's Work in the Civil War Linus Pierpont Brockett
  • And when he goes to the Tynwald Coort there, it'll be lockjaw and the measles with some of them.

    The Manxman Hall Caine
  • To prevent lockjaw, from a Nail run into the Foot, or any other injury.

  • No person need die of lockjaw if these directions are followed.

    The Whitehouse Cookbook (1887) Mrs. F.L. Gillette
  • I suffered terribly during the day, once having the lockjaw.

British Dictionary definitions for lockjaw


(pathol) a nontechnical name for trismus, tetanus
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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lockjaw in Medicine

lockjaw lock·jaw (lŏk'jô')

  1. See tetanus.

  2. See trismus.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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Slang definitions & phrases for lockjaw



: McKellen's Richard, his defects minimized and with a ruling-class lockjaw accent, is elegantly carved in ice (1980s+)

Related Terms

have lockjaw, locust valley lockjaw

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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