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big top

noun
1.
the largest or main tent of a circus.
2.
a circus.
Origin
1890-1895
1890-95, Americanism
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for big top

big top

noun (informal)
1.
the main tent of a circus
2.
the circus itself
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
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Idioms and Phrases with big top

big top

.
The main tent of a circus, as in The high-wire act is almost always in the big top. [ c. 1840 ]
.
Underworld slang for a maximum-security prison, as in He was sentenced to ten years in the big top. [ 1950s ]
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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