- a circular frame with an axle connecting to the rudder of a ship, for steering: He took the wheel during the storm.
- a paddle wheel.
- a propeller.
- moving, propelling, or animating agencies: the wheels of commerce; the wheels of thought.
- Slang.a personal means of transportation, especially a car.
verb (used with object)
verb (used without object)
- at the helm of a ship, the steering wheel of a motor vehicle, etc.
- in command or control: Her ambition is to be at the wheel of a large corporation by the age of 40.
Origin of wheel
Examples from the Web for wheel
Contemporary Examples of wheel
They were racing toward the corner of Tompkins and Myrtle avenues with Johnson at the wheel when another call came over the radio.'Please Don't Die!': The Frantic Battle to Save Murdered Cops
December 22, 2014
“They think Putin is the only evil in Russia and dream about getting rid of him,” he said, tightening his grip on the wheel.Think Putin’s Bad? Wait for the Next Guy
November 14, 2014
Maybe the wheel will turn again, and heterosexuality will come to seem edgy.
It was only a matter of time that the wheel turned its full revolution.
The deepest cuts in the wheel showed the numbers of the combination.The High Society Bank Robber of the 1800s
J. North Conway
October 19, 2014
Historical Examples of wheel
Charles Merchant, the son of rich John Merchant, was behind the wheel.Way of the Lawless
He gave the wheel a reckless twist, and Le Moyne called him to time sternly.K
Mary Roberts Rinehart
One wheel struck a cobble stone, and the buggy lurched horribly.Chip, of the Flying U
B. M. Bower
By like cause turning the wheel to the left turns the machine to the left.Flying Machines
W.J. Jackman and Thos. H. Russell
All this time I kept shouting to the man at the wheel to put his helm "hard down."Ned Myers
James Fenimore Cooper
- driving or steering a vehicle or vessel
- in charge
Word Origin for wheel
Old English hweol, hweogol, from Proto-Germanic *khwekhwlan, *khwegwlan (cf. Old Norse hvel, Old Swedish hiughl, Old Frisian hwel, Middle Dutch weel), from PIE *k(w)e-k(w)lo- "wheel, circle" (cf. Old Church Slavonic kolo "wheel"), a reduplicated form from root *k(w)el- "to go round" (see cycle (n.)).
The root wegh-, "to convey, especially by wheeled vehicle," is found in virtually every branch of Indo-European, including now Anatolian. The root, as well as other widely represented roots such as aks- and nobh-, attests to the presence of the wheel -- and vehicles using it -- at the time Proto-Indo-European was spoken. [Watkins, p. 96]
Figurative sense is early 14c. Slang wheels "a car" is recorded from 1959. Wheeler-dealer is from 1954, a rhyming elaboration of dealer; wheelie is from 1966.
"to turn like a wheel," early 13c., from wheel (n.); transitive sense attested from late 14c. Related: Wheeled; wheeling.
In addition to the idioms beginning with wheel
- wheel and deal
- wheels in motion
- wheels within wheels
- asleep at the switch (wheel)
- at the wheel
- big cheese (wheel)
- cog in the wheel
- fifth wheel
- grease (oil) the wheels
- hell on wheels
- put one's shoulder to the wheel
- reinvent the wheel
- set (wheels) in motion
- spin one's wheels
- squeaky wheel gets the grease