Definition of Catherine wheel in English:

Catherine wheel

Syllabification: Cath·er·ine wheel
Pronunciation: /ˈkaTH(ə)rən ˌ(h)wēl


1A firework in the form of a flat coil that spins when fixed to something solid and lit.
More example sentences
  • But if we wish to avoid establishing a black market, and the sale of fireworks to the public is to continue, then let these be the sparklers, Catherine wheels and small rockets Mr Waller appears to favour.
  • By the end of the day we managed to acquire a substantial collection of rockets, Catherine wheels and sparklers.
  • Next was a 2/6 box - as before with a couple of rockets, a few Catherine wheels and some Bangers.
1.1 Heraldry A wheel with curved spikes projecting around the circumference.


late 16th century (as a heraldic term): named after St. Catherine (see Catherine, St.), with reference to her martyrdom.

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rich in, covered with, or producing oil; oily