Definition of toggle in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈtäɡəl/


Image of toggle
1A short rod of wood or plastic sewn to one side of a coat or other garment, pushed through a hole or loop on the other side and twisted so as to act as a fastener.
Example sentences
  • But she was fastened into her duties like a toggle into a duffel coat.
  • When Adam had received a cut, after being hit in the eye by a duffel coat toggle, action had been taken.
  • Duffle coat toggles used to be made from such nuts.
1.1A pin or other crosspiece put through the eye of a rope or a link of a chain to keep it in place.
Example sentences
  • This toggle holds the necklace together when it's passed through the clay loop.
1.2 (also toggle bolt) A kind of wall fastener for use on hollow walls, having a part that springs open or turns through 90° after it is inserted so as to prevent withdrawal.
Example sentences
  • Heavier objects can be supported with a molly style hollow wall fastener, a spiral threaded fastener, or a toggle bolt.
  • If only one stud is located behind a unit, add a toggle bolt as an additional fastener.
  • If you happen to hit framing while drilling, use a screw instead of a toggle bolt at that location.
1.3A movable pivoted crosspiece acting as a barb on a harpoon.
2 (also toggle switch or toggle key) Computing A key or command that toggles between two modes, such as the caps lock key.
Example sentences
  • These include a power toggle with an LED power indicator, an input toggle to choose which video feed is functional, and an on-screen menu on/off switch.
  • One of the control buttons is a toggle for the SuperBright feature (on, off, and movie), another button is a reset, and the remaining buttons control the menu system.
  • The mixer application includes a nice feature for headphone use: a toggle switch turns on a small pre-amp that boosts signal output.


1 [no object] Computing Switch from one effect, feature, or state to another by using a toggle.
Example sentences
  • While you are typing, there's a button which toggles between CAPS, lower case, numbers, and punctuation modes.
  • One button toggles power on and off, another resets the display, and one exits the on-screen menu.
  • The pilot will be able to use the touch-screen, manually toggle through the screens using the buttons on the throttle and side-stick controller or use a voice recognition system.
2 [with object] Provide or fasten with a toggle or toggles.


Mid 18th century (originally in nautical use): of unknown origin.

  • Toggle was originally in nautical use, a term for a short pin passed through a loop of a rope to keep it in place. The origin is obscure but there is probably a relationship with tangle. The word's generalization to a ‘fastener’ on a strap or garment dates from the late 19th century. It has been used as a term in computing since the 1980s for a command that has the opposite effect on successive occasions: the notion is one of turning through 90 degrees.

Words that rhyme with toggle

boggle, goggle, joggle, synagogal, woggle

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: tog·gle

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