Big Ben

Origin of Big Ben

First recorded in 1890–95 Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

British Dictionary definitions for big ben

Big Ben

  1. the bell in the clock tower of the Houses of Parliament, London
  2. the clock in this tower
  3. the tower

Word Origin for Big Ben

C19: named after Sir Benjamin Hall, Chief Commissioner of Works in 1856 when it was cast
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

Word Origin and History for big ben

Big Ben

clock in the Parliament tower in London, generally said to have been named for Sir Benjamin Hall (1802-1867), first Chief Commissioner of Works, under whose supervision the bell was cast.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

big ben in Culture

Big Ben

The popular name for the huge clock mounted in a tower near the meeting place of the British Parliament in London. Big Ben strikes the quarter-hour with the familiar Westminster chimes.

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.