Did you know?

Click any word in a definition or example to find the entry for that word

lock away - definition and synonyms

What are red words?

90% of the time, speakers of English use just 7,500 words in speech and writing. These words appear in red, and are graded with stars. One-star words are frequent, two-star words are more frequent, and three-star words are the most frequent.

Thesaurus diagram

The thesaurus of synonyms and related words is fully integrated into the dictionary. Click on the thesaurus category heading under the button in an entry to see the synonyms and related words for that meaning.

phrasal verb [transitive]
Word Forms
present tense
I/you/we/theylock away
he/she/itlocks away
present participlelocking away
past tenselocked away
past participlelocked away
  1. 1

    lock away


    lock up

    to put something in a place or container which you fasten with a lock
  2. 2

    lock away


    lock up

    to put someone in a prison, or in a hospital for mentally ill people

    After the murder he was locked away for 50 years.

  3. 3
    lock yourself away to go somewhere where you can be alone

    James locked himself away in his bedroom.

See also main entry: lock


a lifestyle focussing on simple pleasures such as comfort and cosiness in the home, and spending time with friends and family

BuzzWord Article

Open Dictionary


a form of location that involves the underwater detonation of a bomb which causes sound waves that are picked up by ships

add a word


A must for anyone with an interest in the changing face of language. The Macmillan Dictionary blog explores English as it is spoken around the world today.

global English and language change from our blog
Macmillan learn live love play