One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1A switch controlling the supply of electricity or fuel to an entire system.
- ‘When my sister was in high school, she knew the location of the master switches for the lights because my Dad, as a volunteer fireman, helped put them up.’
- ‘There is also a master switch at the bottom of the left grip that turns everything off.’
- ‘If it bothers you, pull out the fuel shutoff valve, turn off the master switch and say, ‘I quit.’’
- ‘He commented ‘We had a problem with the master switch relay almost from the start of the race but it had not affected my position and once the tyres came to the fore I had a fantastic run.’’
- ‘Unfortunately, none of the master switches were turned off so the car burnt until the wiring burnt through and stopped the pumps.’
- ‘There was a little button covered by a powerful box of Plexiglas that contained the master switch shut-off.’
- ‘Trip the master switch and a complex series of events eventually leads to the blast off of the space shuttle.’
- ‘In the main bedroom O'Hara had several master switches, one of which plunged the whole house into darkness.’
- ‘The MG was running 4th overall in the first round of the championship in April before a master switch relay problem bought them to the pits.’
- ‘I reached for the control panel's master switch and flipped it and all the lights on the console lit up and the computer started its whir as it started its booting process.’
- ‘As soon as the door was opened the problem became clear: all racing cars have master switches to kill all functions in case of a fire and ours had inexplicably turned itself off.’
- ‘This ‘integration’ showed up as soon as the master switch went on.’
- ‘Okay, pull the red mixture knob out to kill the engine and flip off the red master switch.’
- ‘The fuel system was controlled by the operation of a master switch and the throttle.’
- ‘I turned off the master switch and closed the fuel valves and, as we ground to a halt, followed Lincoln out the crew door.’
- ‘Unplug tools, use padlocks, master switches, and remove starter keys.’
- ‘Even though the circuitry automatically enters a low power-consumption mode when not used for a few minutes, unless you turn the master switch off, you will return to find the battery dead or dying within a few days.’
- ‘You'll want to know this should you discover on your way back to the plane that you've left the master switch on.’
- 1.1Biology A substance or gene that regulates gene expression or embryonic development, or initiates cancer.
- ‘Some act like master switches, triggering many different genes to work together to build a structure.’
- ‘These regulatory genes make proteins that act as master switches.’
- ‘They are indeed master switches, triggering vast developmental consequences, and their significance is only now unfolding.’
- ‘These master switches work like circuit breakers and either turn on or turn off an array of other genes.’
- ‘But it is this one master switch that is the most important gene on the Y chromosome.’
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