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wheeler-dealer? It means a voracious merchant, or something to that effect, as it appears to me. But why does it have that signification? What's the origin of this word?
Jun 24, 2013 1:28 PM
Answers · 2
WHEELER DEALER - "In gaming houses of the 18th-century American West a big wheeler and dealer was a heavy bettor at cards and the roulette wheels. Through this tradition, and the association of a 'big wheel' as the man (or wheel) who makes the vehicle (things) run, the expression came to mean a big-time operator by the early 1940s, usually with an unsavory connotation, the 'wheeler dealer' being the type who runs over anything in his path with no regard for rules of the road." From "Encyclopedia of Word and Phrase Origins" by Robert Hendrickson (Fact on File, New York, 1997).
June 24, 2013
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