[ hwur-li-gig, wur- ]
See synonyms for: whirligigwhirligigs on Thesaurus.com

  1. something that whirls or revolves.

  2. a whirling motion or course: the whirligig of fashion.

  1. a giddy or flighty person.

  2. Dialect. a merry-go-round or carrousel.

  3. a toy for whirling or spinning, as a top.

Origin of whirligig

First recorded in 1400–50, whirligig is from the late Middle English word whirlegigge.See whirl, gig3

Words Nearby whirligig

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use whirligig in a sentence

  • This little bubble is held there by tiny hairs, and because whirligig has it, it can breathe while it stays under the water.

    Little Busybodies | Jeanette Augustus Marks and Julia Moody
  • "Aunty Maggy's whirligig" could be enjoyed on payment of an old pair of boots, a collection of rags, or the like.

    Auld Licht Idyls | J. M. Barrie

British Dictionary definitions for whirligig


/ (ˈwɜːlɪˌɡɪɡ) /

  1. any spinning toy, such as a top

  2. another name for merry-go-round

  1. anything that whirls about, spins, or moves in a circular or giddy way: the whirligig of social life

  2. another name for windmill (def. 3)

Origin of whirligig

C15: whirlegigge, from whirl + gig 1

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