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WordReference Random House Learner's Dictionary of American English © 2020
big1 /bɪg/USA pronunciation
adj., big•ger, big•gest, adv. adj.
WordReference Random House Unabridged Dictionary of American English © 2020
- large in size, height, width, or amount:a big house.
- of major concern or importance;
influential:[before a noun]a big problem.
mature:You are big enough to know better.
- [before a noun] elder: my big sister.
- Government large-scale and powerful:[before a noun]big government.
- [be + ~] known or used widely;
popular: Jazz became big in the 1920's.
magnanimous:She was big enough to forgive him.
pompous:a big talker.
- loud: a big voice.
- Informal Termssuccessfully:The new plans went over big.
big•ness, n. [uncountable]
- Idiomsbe big on, [~ + object] Informal. to have a special liking or enthusiasm for:That teacher is big on neatness.
(big),USA pronunciation adj., big•ger, big•gest, adv., n. adj.
- large, as in size, height, width, or amount:a big house; a big quantity.
- of major concern, importance, gravity, or the like:a big problem.
- outstanding for a specified quality:a big liar; a big success.
- important, as in influence, standing, or wealth:a big man in his field.
mature:big enough to know better.
- elder:my big sister.
- doing business or conducted on a large scale;
major in size or importance:big government.
- consisting of the largest or most influential companies in an industry:Big steel wants to lower prices, but the smaller mills don't.
- [Informal.]known or used widely;
popular:Nouvelle cuisine became big in the 1970s.
kindly:big enough to forgive.
haughty:a big talker.
orotund:a big voice.
- Clothing(of clothing or a clothing design) made of or distinguished by voluminous fabric that is loosely or softly shaped and fitted:a big shirt; the big look.
- Wine(of a wine) having more than average flavor, body, and alcoholic content.
brimming:eyes big with tears.
- Dialect Terms[Chiefly South Midland and Southern U.S.]pregnant.
- [Obs.]very strong;
- Idiomsbe big on, to have a special liking or enthusiasm for:Mother is big on family get-togethers.
- Idiomsbig with child. See great (def. 17).
- Informal Termsboastfully;
pretentiously:to act big; to talk big.
- Informal Termswith great success;
successfully:to go over big.
- Sportthe bigs, the highest level of professional competition, as the major leagues in baseball.
- Middle English big(ge) 1250–1300
- 1.See corresponding entry in Unabridged huge, immense;
extensive. See great.
- 4.See corresponding entry in Unabridged consequential.
- 15.See corresponding entry in Unabridged overflowing, flooded.
(big),USA pronunciation v.t., bigged, big•ging. [Brit. Dial.]
- 1.See corresponding entry in Unabridged little.
- British Termsto build.
(big),USA pronunciation n. [Scot. and North Eng.]
- Old Norse byggja to inhabit, cognate with Old English bū(i)an, German bauen
- Middle English biggen origin, originally, to inhabit 1150–1200
- Scottish Termsbigg1.
Collins Concise English Dictionary © HarperCollins Publishers::
big /bɪɡ/ adj (bigger, biggest)
- of great or considerable size, height, weight, number, power, or capacity
- having great significance; important
- important through having power, influence, wealth, authority, etc
- informal considerable in extent or intensity (esp in the phrase in a big way)
- elder: my big brother
- generous; magnanimous: that's very big of you
- (in combination): big-hearted
- extravagant; boastful: he's full of big talk
- too big for one's boots, too big for one's breeches ⇒ conceited; unduly self-confident
- in an advanced stage of pregnancy (esp in the phrase big with child)
See also big upEtymology: 13th Century: perhaps of Scandinavian origin; compare Norwegian dialect bugge big manˈbigness n
- boastfully; pretentiously (esp in the phrase talk big)
- in an exceptional way; well: his talk went over big with the audience
- on a grand scale (esp in the phrase think big)