Word of the DaySaturday, October 05, 2013
\HWUR-li-gig, WUR-\ , noun;
something that whirls or revolves.
a whirling motion or course: the whirligig of fashion.
a giddy or flighty person.
Dialect. a merry-go-round or carrousel.
a toy for whirling or spinning, as a top.
It comes back to me that I was at a certain hour long afterwards to have reflected, in this connection, on the characteristic free play of the whirligig of time.
-- Henry James, Daisy Miller, 1878
...would the whole desperate whirligig slow down, and the exhausted public relapse upon plain grub and elbow-grease?
-- Dorothy L. Sayers, Murder Must Advertise, 1933
Whirligig combines the words whirl with gig. Gig comes from the Middle English ghyg meaning "spinning top."
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