[ big ]
/ bɪg /
adjective, big·ger, big·gest.
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.
grown-up; 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.
magnanimous; generous; kindly: big enough to forgive.
boastful; pompous; pretentious; haughty: a big talker.
loud; orotund: a big voice.
(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.
(of a wine) having more than average flavor, body, and alcoholic content.
filled; brimming: eyes big with tears.
Chiefly South Midland and Southern U.S. pregnant.
Obsolete. very strong; powerful.
Informal. boastfully; pretentiously: to act big; to talk big.
Informal. with great success; successfully: to go over big.
the bigs, Sports Slang. the highest level of professional competition, as the major leagues in baseball.
be big on, to have a special liking or enthusiasm for: Mother is big on family get-togethers.
big with child. great(def 23).
Origin of big1
1250–1300; Middle English big(ge) < ?
SYNONYMS FOR big
15 overflowing, flooded.
Related formsbig·gish, adjectivebig·ly, adverb, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019
British Dictionary definitions for be big on (1 of 2)
/ (bɪɡ) /
adjective bigger or biggest
of great or considerable size, height, weight, number, power, or capacity
having great significance; importanta big decision
important through having power, influence, wealth, authority, etcthe big four banks
(intensifier usually qualifying something undesirable)a big dope
informal considerable in extent or intensity (esp in the phrase in a big way)
- eldermy big brother
- grown-upwhen you're big, you can stay up later
- generous; magnanimousthat's very big of you
- (in combination)big-hearted
(often foll by with) brimming; fullmy heart is big with sadness
extravagant; boastfulhe's full of big talk
(of wine) full-bodied, with a strong aroma and flavour
too big for one's boots or too big for one's breeches conceited; unduly self-confident
in an advanced stage of pregnancy (esp in the phrase big with child)
big on informal enthusiastic aboutthat company is big on research
boastfully; pretentiously (esp in the phrase talk big)
in an exceptional way; wellhis talk went over big with the audience
on a grand scale (esp in the phrase think big)
See also big up
Derived Formsbiggish, adjectivebigness, noun
Word Origin for big
C13: perhaps of Scandinavian origin; compare Norwegian dialect bugge big man
British Dictionary definitions for be big on (2 of 2)
/ (bɪɡ) /
verb bigs, bigging, bigged or bug (bʌɡ) Scot
to excavate (earth) into a pile
Word Origin for big
from Old Norse byggja; related to Old English būian to inhabit
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Idioms and Phrases with be big on (1 of 2)
be big on
see big on.
Idioms and Phrases with be big on (2 of 2)
In addition to the idioms beginning with big
- big and bold
- big as life
- big bucks
- big cheese
- big daddy
- big deal
- big enchilada
- big fish in a small pond
- big head, have a
- big league
- big mouth, have a
- big of one
- big on
- big shot
- big stink
- big time
- big top
- big wheel
- go over big
- great (big) guns
- hit it big
- in a big way
- little frog in a big pond
- make a federal case (big deal)
- talk big
- think big
- too big for one's breeches
- what's the (big) idea
Also see underbigger.
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.