Some states have major roads called turnpikes. How did someone come up with that name?
#111866. Asked by 29CoveRoad. (Jan 03 10 12:35 AM)
The origin of the word is as follows:
c.1420, "spiked road barrier used for defense," from turn + pike (2) "shaft." Sense transferred to "horizontal cross of timber, turning on a vertical pin" (1547), which were used to bar horses from foot roads. This led to the sense of "barrier to stop passage until a toll is paid" (1678). Meaning "road with a toll gate" is from 1748, shortening of turnpike road (1745).
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