wheel·​house | \ ˈ(h)wēl-ˌhau̇s How to pronounce wheelhouse (audio) \
plural wheelhouses

Definition of wheelhouse

1 : pilothouse Looking out at the all-but-empty bay from the wheelhouse of the new 28-foot research boat …— Bill Nemitz He climbed a rickety rope ladder to the ship's deck, then another five flights of stairs to the wheelhouse.— Daniel Machalaba
2 : a place or center of control or leadership (as in an organization) But while there was momentary calm in the wheelhouse, there was still a real question whether anyone was really in command of the administration's foreign-policy machinery.— David Gelman et al.
3 US
a baseball : the section of the strike zone where it is easiest for the batter to hit the ball well The home run came on a 3–2 pitch. [Danny] Graves tried to get Jenkins with a sinker. "It was right in his wheelhouse," Graves said.— John Fay
b : an area that matches a person's skills or expertise … he was right in his wheelhouse—politics is where [Stephen] Colbert soars.— Adam Chitwood

Examples of wheelhouse in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Aside from drawing out the nominating process, the virus's effect on public health and the economy fall within the Vermont senator's policy wheelhouse. Naomi Lim, Washington Examiner, "Bernie Sanders could give Biden headaches through end of primaries," 27 Mar. 2020 Washed Away As the Scandies Rose sank, its life rafts were unreachable, stowed in containers at the top of the wheelhouse, which was already dipping toward the water line. New York Times, "Overtaken by Frigid Seas, Hours From Help, There Was Little Chance of Survival," 9 Jan. 2020 Five who were asleep behind the wheelhouse on the boat’s uppermost sun deck survived, while the one crew member sleeping alongside the passengers in the bunkroom on the lower deck did not. Rachel Desantis, PEOPLE.com, "Calif. Diving Boat That Killed 34 in Fire Was Exempt from Stricter Safety Rules: Report," 26 Nov. 2019 But, after buying some beer and snacks, all the international travelers got back on the boat and gathered on the topmost deck above the wheelhouse. Emily Gillespie, Washington Post, "Instead of flying to this Peruvian city, she took a slow cruise down the Amazon — on a cargo ship," 4 Oct. 2019 Still, there’s no doubt that the six-time winner knows how to mold voices, especially those outside of his country wheelhouse. Erin Cavoto, Country Living, "This Blind Audition on 'The Voice' Really Confused Blake Shelton," 22 Mar. 2020 House Republicans have centered their budding climate strategy around boosting carbon capture, even proposing making the 45Q credits permanent, so this wouldn't be outside their wheelhouse. Josh Siegel, Washington Examiner, "Daily on Energy: Could Treasury be looking at getting into oil speculation?," 20 Mar. 2020 All that time also makes it a great place to try your hand at photography normally outside your wheelhouse. Jeanette D. Moses, Popular Science, "Six photography projects to try in the new year," 31 Dec. 2019 Still, Donnie Wahlberg’s wife guessed Mary J. Blige which isn’t exactly in the same wheelhouse. Megan Stein, Country Living, "A 'Masked Singer' Judge Is Getting So Much Backlash for This 'Disrespectful' Comment," 5 Feb. 2020

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

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First Known Use of wheelhouse

1824, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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The first known use of wheelhouse was in 1824

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Last Updated

27 Apr 2020

Cite this Entry

“Wheelhouse.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/wheelhouse. Accessed 29 May. 2020.

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More Definitions for wheelhouse


How to pronounce wheelhouse (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of wheelhouse

: an enclosed area on a boat or ship where a person stands to steer

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