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Noun: key  kee
  1. Metal device shaped in such a way that when it is inserted into the appropriate lock the lock's mechanism can be rotated
  2. One of several labelled buttons on a typewriter, computer keyboard, or keypad, used to enter a particular character or invoke a particular function
  3. Something crucial for explaining
    "the key to development is economic integration"
  4. Pitch of the voice
    "he spoke in a low key"
  5. Any of 24 major or minor diatonic scales that provide the tonal framework for a piece of music
    - tonality
  6. A kilogram of a narcotic drug
    "they were carrying two keys of heroin"
  7. A winged often one-seed indehiscent fruit as of the ash, elm or maple
    - samara, key fruit
  8. A coral reef off the southern coast of Florida
    - cay, Florida key
  9. (basketball) a space (including the foul line) in front of the basket at each end of a basketball court; usually painted a different colour from the rest of the court
    "he hit a jump shot from the top of the key";
    - paint
  10. A list of answers to a test
    "some students had stolen the key to the final exam"
  11. A list of words or phrases that explain symbols or abbreviations
  12. A generic term for any device whose possession entitles the holder to a means of access
    "a safe-deposit box usually requires two keys to open it"
  13. Mechanical device used to wind another device that is driven by a spring (as a clock)
    - winder
  14. The central building block at the top of an arch or vault
    - keystone, headstone
Adjective: key  kee
  1. Serving as an essential component
    "a key rule";
    - cardinal, central, fundamental, primal
Verb: key  kee
  1. Classify or apply the appropriate name to, e.g. in botany or biology
    - identify, discover, key out, distinguish, describe, name
  2. Provide with a key
    "We were keyed after the locks were changed in the building"
  3. Vandalize a car by scratching the sides with a key
    "His new Mercedes was keyed last night in the parking lot"
  4. (music) regulate the musical pitch of
  5. Harmonize with or adjust to
    "key one's actions to the voters' prevailing attitude"
Noun: Key  kee
  1. United States lawyer and poet who wrote a poem after witnessing the British attack on Baltimore during the War of 1812; the poem was later set to music and entitled 'The Star-Spangled Banner' (1779-1843)
    - Francis Scott Key

Sounds like: kai, key, quay, cay, q

Derived forms: Keys, keying, keys, keyed

See also: important, of import

Type of: achene, attorney, building block, chord, coral reef, device, explanation, furnish, harmonise [Brit], harmonize, kg, kilo, kilogram, kilogramme [Brit, Cdn], lawyer, lever, list, listing, mechanical device, musical notation, offer, pitch, poet, positive identification, provide, reconcile, render, space, supply, vandalise [Brit], vandalize

Part of: action, action mechanism, arch, basketball court, Everglade State, FL, Fla., Florida, keyboard, Sunshine State

Encyclopedia: Key, Richard