Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • adj. Of considerable size, number, quantity, magnitude, or extent; large. See Synonyms at large.
  • adj. Of great force; strong: a big wind; in a big rage.
  • adj. Obsolete Of great strength.
  • adj. Mature or grown-up: big enough to take the bus by herself.
  • adj. Older or eldest. Used especially of a sibling: My big brother is leaving for college next week.
  • adj. Pregnant: big with child.
  • adj. Filled up; brimming over: felt big with love.
  • adj. Having or exercising considerable authority, control, or influence: a big official; a big chief.
  • adj. Conspicuous in position, wealth, or importance; prominent: a big figure in the peace movement.
  • adj. Of great significance; momentous: a big decision; a big victory.
  • adj. Informal Widely liked, used, or practiced; popular: "For public opinion . . . has grown harsh and yuppie-bashing is big” ( Sally Jacobs).
  • adj. Informal Self-important; cocky: You're too big for your own good.
  • adj. Loud and firm; resounding: a big voice.
  • adj. Bountiful; generous: had a big heart.
  • adv. In a pretentious or boastful way: talked big about the new job.
  • adv. Informal With considerable success: made it big with their recent best-selling album.
  • adv. Informal In a thorough or unmistakable way; emphatically: failed big at the box office.
  • idiom big on Enthusiastic about; partial to: "The Japanese are big on ranking things and deciding which is Number One” ( James Fallows).

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. Of great size, large.
  • adj. Thought to have undue influence.
  • adj. Popular.
  • adj. Adult.
  • adj. Fat.
  • adj. Important or significant.
  • adj. Enthusiastic (about).
  • adj. Mature, conscientious, principled.
  • adj. Well-endowed, possessing large breasts in the case of a woman or a large penis in the case of a man.
  • adv. In a loud manner.
  • adv. In a boasting manner.
  • adv. In a large amount or to a large extent.
  • adv. On a large scale, expansively
  • adv. Hard.
  • n. An important or powerful person; a celebrity; a big name.
  • n. The big leagues, big time.
  • v. To praise or recommend

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Having largeness of size; of much bulk or magnitude; of great size; large.
  • adj. Great with young; pregnant; swelling; ready to give birth or produce; -- often figuratively.
  • adj. Having greatness, fullness, importance, inflation, distention, etc., whether in a good or a bad sense. As applied to looks, it indicates haughtiness or pride.
  • n. Barley, especially the hardy four-rowed kind.
  • transitive v. To build.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Of great strength or power.
  • Having great size; large in bulk or magnitude, absolutely or relatively.
  • Great with young; pregnant; ready to give birth; hence, figuratively, full of something important; ready to produce; teeming.
  • . Distended; full, as of grief, passion, courage, determination, goodness, etc.
  • . Tumid; inflated, as with pride; hence, haughty in air or mien, or indicating haughtiness; pompous; proud; boastful: as, big looks; big words.
  • . Great as regards influence, standing, wealth, etc.
  • Synonyms Large, etc. (see great), bulky, huge, massive.
  • 5. Lofty, pompous, arrogant, important.
  • . To inhabit; occupy.
  • 2. Reflexively, to locate one's self.
  • 3. To build; erect; fashion.
  • To dwell; have a dwelling.
  • n. A kind of winter barley cultivated in northern Europe, especially in Scotland; properly, four-rowed barley, Hordeum vulgare, inferior to but hardier than H. hexastichon, of which it is sometimes called a variety. See bear.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • adj. loud and firm
  • adj. above average in size or number or quantity or magnitude or extent
  • adj. prodigious
  • adv. in a boastful manner
  • adj. conspicuous in position or importance
  • adj. exhibiting self-importance
  • adj. given or giving freely
  • adj. (of animals) fully developed
  • adj. generous and understanding and tolerant
  • adj. in an advanced stage of pregnancy
  • adj. feeling self-importance
  • adv. extremely well
  • adj. very intense
  • adj. significant
  • adv. in a major way
  • adv. on a grand scale
  • adj. marked by intense physical force

Etymologies

Middle English, perhaps of Scandinavian origin.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From northern Middle English dialect big, bigge ("powerful, strong"), of uncertain origin, possibly from a dialect of Old Norse. Compare bugge ("great man"). (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • Bush has helped his corporate \'base\ 'create a \'New World Order\' in which robber barons of big oil, assisted by \'big media\ ', rule the world and plunder its resources.

    OpEdNews - Quicklink: How Bush Helped Establish a Corporate 'New World Order'

  • Pale skin, smooth all over, little pink nipples on a smooth, flat chest, snub nose with a little pale spray of freckles, big, _big_ blue eyes, naked as a jaybird, but for the brass-colored bobby-pins holding up her braids.

    Asimov's Science Fiction

  • They looked just as puzzled as he probably did, he saw; they knew they were being called in on something big, and in the IES big meant _big_.

    The Judas Valley

  • “Ah, but you wouldn’t say they looked like fools when they landed a big pike, I can tell you, ” said Tom, who had never caught anything that was “big” in his life, but whose imagination was on the stretch with indignant zeal for the honor of sport.

    III. The New Schoolfellow. Book II—School-Time

  • I don't know what paved streets an 'stall feedin' do for a man, but any one 'at's lived sixty year on the ground knows' at this whole old earth is jest teemin 'with work' at's too big for anything but a God, an 'a mighty _big_ God at that!

    The Song of the Cardinal

  • And I want to be a great, big, big, _big_ little boy.

    The White Christmas and other Merry Christmas Plays

  • "Didn't you ever ask the Lord to let you do some big, _big_ things?" insisted Bobby.

    Bobby of the Labrador

  • They say that there are white men who come over the great salt lake from far-off lands in big _big_ canoes.

    The Walrus Hunters A Romance of the Realms of Ice

  • Football is a rough sport, thats why we watch it, thats why we pay big$$ for tickets and buy big screen TVs.

    Yahoo! News: Business - Opinion

  • However, they will fail to eliminate big corporations (Home Depot comes to mind) who spend countless dollars on their own lobbyists whose sole purpose is to influence legislation in its (i. e.-big corporation's) favor.

    James Sanford At The Movies - MLive.com

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Comments

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  • "To build a nest. A common use of the term in Scotland." --Dr. Jamieson's Scottish Dictionary and Supplement, 1841.

    May 26, 2011

  • Means "piglet" in Dutch.

    July 13, 2009