or pin wheel
- a child's toy consisting of a wheel or leaflike curls of paper or plastic loosely attached by a pin to a stick, designed to revolve when blown by or as by the wind.
- Also called catherine wheel. a kind of firework supported on a pin which, when ignited, revolves rapidly and gives a dazzling display of light.
- a wheel having pins at right angles to its rim for engaging the teeth of a gear.
- to revolve rapidly like a pinwheel: Images of the past pinwheeled through his mind.
Origin of pinwheel
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for pinwheel
Simeon spun around, as he said afterwards, "like a young one's pinwheel."The Depot Master
Joseph C. Lincoln
Then he swung the light in full circles, till it became a pinwheel of flame.Young Hilda at the Wars
As he stared into the revenuer's insolent face, the earth looked like a pinwheel.The Red Debt
A pinwheel had exploded, sending a shower of sparks in every direction.
Persis went through the air like a pinwheel, and those who witnessed the affair gave up her and the horse for dead.What Will People Say?
- another name for Catherine wheel (def. 1)
- a cogwheel whose teeth are formed by small pins projecting either axially or radially from the rim of the wheel
- US and Canadian a toy consisting of plastic or paper vanes attached to a stick in such a manner that they revolve like the sails of a windmillAlso called (in Britain and certain other countries): windmill, whirligig
Word Origin and History for pinwheel
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper