Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English homepage

Date: 1300-1400
Origin: linch 'pin fastening a wheel to an axle' (11-16 centuries) (from Old English lynis) + pin

linchpin

noun
     
linch‧pin , lynchpin

the linchpin of something

the person or thing in a group, system etc that is most important, because everything depends on them

Dictionary pictures of the day
Do you know what each of these is called?
What is the word for picture 1? What is the word for picture 2? What is the word for picture 3? What is the word for picture 4?
Click on any of the pictures above to find out what it is called.

Explore our topic dictionary