big wheel

noun
plural big wheels

Definition of big wheel

1 chiefly US, informal : an important person : bigwig, big shot He … followed the girl to the elevator, and got in with her as if she were a big wheel in Bronx politics.— Wilfrid Sheed
2 British : ferris wheel The wheel formation is the basis of most rides, and the Big Wheel itself is not a new machine.— Ian Starsmore They ate toffee apples and sweet popcorn, shot at targets, tossed rings and rode on the big wheel.— Paulo Lins

Examples of big wheel in a Sentence

He's a big wheel in local politics. brags that her son is a big wheel on Wall Street
Recent Examples on the Web When other options included joining a tech giant as a small cog in a big wheel, or starting from scratch within an unproven startup, the middle ground was attractive. Jodie Cook, Forbes, 15 Nov. 2021 Adult downhill big wheel racing checked all the boxes. Sarah Michels, The Enquirer, 29 July 2021 Park purists were against it but the extension won approval after a campaign highlighting the big wheel as economic recovery engine that could draw tourists and help Richmond District merchants survive the pandemic’s financial hit. Sam Whiting, San Francisco Chronicle, 9 May 2021 Most pies are $15.99 for the 14″ version, $19.99 for the 18″ and $45.99 for the 28″ big wheel. al, 11 May 2021 Now the big wheel is seen as everything from a morale booster to a city draw. Sam Whiting, San Francisco Chronicle, 3 Mar. 2021 The deal also obliges the operator to provide 500 free tickets a month to at-risk families, an arrangement that will continue as long as the big wheel keeps on turning. Steve Rubenstein, San Francisco Chronicle, 18 Feb. 2021 The event, at Thiensville Park, 299 Elm St., will include more than 40 vendors and activities including face painting, hay rides, big wheel racing, a petting zoo and a pie baking contest, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Eddie Morales, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 2 Oct. 2020 Unusually busy grocery store workers might prefer simple packages with a barcode instead of big wheels or other presentations that require more work, Parker said. Janelle Bitker, SFChronicle.com, 14 Apr. 2020 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'big wheel.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of big wheel

1893, in the meaning defined at sense 2

Buying Guide

Check out the best ride-on toys for kids of all ages selected by our Reviews team.

Learn More About big wheel

Time Traveler for big wheel

Time Traveler

The first known use of big wheel was in 1893

See more words from the same year

Dictionary Entries Near big wheel

big vein

big wheel

big whoop

See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for big wheel

Cite this Entry

“Big wheel.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/big%20wheel. Accessed 25 May. 2022.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

Name That Color

  • a light greenish blue color
  • Name that color:
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!