wild card


wild card

noun

: a playing card that can represent any other card in a game

: a person or thing that could affect a situation in a way that cannot be predicted : an unknown or unpredictable factor

sports : a player or team chosen to fill a place in a competition after the regularly qualified players or teams have all been decided

Full Definition of WILD CARD

1
:  an unknown or unpredictable factor
2
:  one picked to fill a leftover playoff or tournament berth after regularly qualifying competitors have all been determined
3
usually wild·card :  a symbol (as ? or *) used in a keyword database search to represent the presence of zero, one, or more than one unspecified characters

Examples of WILD CARD

  1. The joker is a wild card.
  2. Taxes are the wild card in this election.
  3. The team made it into the play-offs as the wild card.

Origin of WILD CARD

wild card, playing card with arbitrarily determined value
First Known Use: 1971

Browse

Next Word in the Dictionary: wild carrot
Previous Word in the Dictionary: wild caraway
All Words Near: wild card

Seen & Heard

What made you want to look up wild card? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

Get Our Free Apps
Voice Search, Favorites,
Word of the Day, and More
Join Us on FB & Twitter
Get the Word of the Day and More