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See also: push bike and push-bike



A pushbike manufactured in 1940 by the G. Ērenpreis Bicycle Factory with a leather saddle and a dynamo mounted on one of the front forks

The noun is derived from push +‎ bike.[1] The verb is derived from the noun.



pushbike (plural pushbikes)

  1. (Australia, New Zealand, UK, informal) A pedal bicycle, as distinguished from a motorized bicycle.
    Synonym: push bicycle
    • 1919, The Motorcycle Illustrated, volume 15, New York, N.Y.: Motorcycle Publishing Company, OCLC 243881815, page 15:
      In England I learned to ride what the Australians call a push-bike, and spent many week-end leaves, and one four days' leave, riding in the South of England and Wales. [...] Today, I wished the push-bike was in its old place—especially when three boys sailed past on push-bikes and offered to give me some "gas."
    • 1937, Union of South Africa: Debates of House of Assembly (House of Assembly of South Africa), volume 30, Cape Town: Cape Times, OCLC 1037659947, column 5911:
      [W]e find that the police have only got a pushbike in the place of the horse. We are, therefore, retrogressing. A pushbike cannot be used very well on our roads, and it is practically useless. The hon. member for Prieska expressed the view that it would cost much more to provide motor vehicles in the place of horses, but I doubt it.
    • 1970, Clarence Joseph Earl, “Bicycles”, in New South Wales Parliamentary Debates (New South Wales Legislative Assembly), Sydney, N.S.W.: W. & F. Pascoe, OCLC 220964249, column 5610:
      I ask the Minister for Transport whether his attention has been drawn to the fact that last year 120 pushbike riders were killed and more than 4,000 injured? Is it a fact that about 100,000 more pushbikes are coming on to the roads each year, increasing even further the possibility of accidents? Has it been estimated that there are over 2,000,000 pushbike riders in Australia, thousands of whom are under 12 years of age?
    • 1984, Tad Sobolewski, Crossing the Bridges, Adelaide, S.A.: Dezsery Ethnic Publications, →ISBN, page 3:
      It was just like an old novel: an ornate iron gate was opened by a liveried janitor, looking askance at my rather derelict pushbike.
    • 1995 July–August, Anne Sterling, “Bermuda Railway Trail: Exploring this ‘Linear Park’ Offers an In-depth Look at Island Life”, in Robert Meyers, editor, Cruise Travel, volume 17, number 1, Evanston, Ill.: World Publishing Company, ISSN 0199-5111, OCLC 834171033, page 48:
      Section One of the Railway Trail is 1¾ miles long and is suitable for walking, push bikes (as bicycles are called), or mopeds. [...] Section Two is 2¼ mile in length and is suitable for push bikes and mopeds.
    • 1996, Australian Farm Journal, volume 6, Melbourne, Vic.: Rural Press Limited, ISSN 1036-6474, OCLC 24888791, page 12, column 2:
      The town being so small, everybody rode pushbikes and there were pushbikes propped up everywhere. I've never seen anything like it! Next thing you know there were pushbikes going in all directions and blokes climbing up the verandah posts!
    • 2005, J[ason] T[revor] Wilson, “Way Down Below”, in Behind the Lines: Stories, Auckland: Exisle Publishing, →ISBN, page 56:
      He looked around for a push bike. There was a red one hanging on the wall that looked like it might go.
    • 2018, Hans Meyer, “10 Years at School”, in 72 Years ont the Slippery, Sloppery Gangway Called “Life”: The Ups and Downs of Working 45 Years in the Shipping Industry, Kibworth Beauchamp, Leicestershire: Matador, Troubador Publishing, →ISBN, pages 13–14:
      [O]ne night, when my brother and I went to bed, he told me he was leaving that night, but he needed my pushbike because his one was old, ugly and broken. [...] In return for giving him my pushbike he promised to give me his miniature railway set.

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pushbike (third-person singular simple present pushbikes, present participle pushbiking, simple past and past participle pushbiked)

  1. (intransitive, Australia, New Zealand, UK, informal) To travel by pushbike.
    • 1913, Surveyor, volume 43, London: [Taylor & Francis?], OCLC 867654985, page 1001, column 2:
      It makes me miserable when I think of the number of poor surveyors still push-biking their daily round.
    • 1930s, “Homo” [pseudonym; Harold James Holmes], Behind Mount Lion: Treks and Tours in Sierra Leone: Compiled from the Letters of “Homo”, Andover, Hampshire: Published at the “Advertiser” Printing Works, OCLC 4861567, page 50:
      Recently two of us had to go into Makeni to collect copper for the men's December pay, and as walking would have taken at least two days, and for any degree of comfort four, we push biked along the bush track from camp to Kamabai, about six miles, and covered the remaining twenty odd miles by railway trolley (West African pump-car).
    • 1932, Herbert N. Smith, “English Personalities”, in Year Book of Optometry, New York, N.Y.: New York State Optometric Association, OCLC 9604920, page 249:
      Dr. Smith is making a tour of the world "push-biking" from place to place, forwarding whatever he finds interesting along his travels.
    • 1964, Jerzy Zubrzycki, Settlers of the Latrobe Valley: A Sociological Study of Immigrants in the Brown Coal Industry in Australia, Canberra, A.C.T.: Australian National University, OCLC 836823402, page 205:
      First of all it was very early in the morning—it was about by this time between 4 and 6 a.m. everybody still asleep—so I went on and start push biking around the house till I decide that its not too early.
    • 1971, African Arts: A Quarterly Journal Devoted to the Graphic, Plastic, Literary and Performing Arts of Africa, Los Angeles, Calif.: African Studies Center, University of California, Los Angeles, ISSN 0001-9933, OCLC 220832097, page 93, column 1:
      In South East Nigeria I knew him only slightly between 1923 and 1948; a self-effacing but self-sufficient figure pushbiking about the country in khaki shorts, white shirt and plimsolls, always purposeful, seldom interested in the whisky, gin, and bridge sessions that passed for evening society in bush stations.
    • 1994, Kingsley Amis, You Can’t Do Both, London: Hutchinson, →ISBN; republished London: Vintage Books, 2004, →ISBN, page 318:
      Apart from a wireless-repair van parked a few yards off and a vicar's-wife type, energetically push-biking past in bright yellow oilskins, the streets were deserted.
    • 1996, Paul [J.] Marriott; Yvonne Argent, The Last Days of T. E. Lawrence: A Leaf in the Wind, Brighton, East Sussex; Portland, Or.: Alpha Press, →ISBN, page 64:
      It was cloudy, cool and misty as he [Thomas Edward Lawrence] push-biked up the long hill into Elsfield village.
    • 1998, Gordon Burn, Happy Like Murderers, London: Faber and Faber, →ISBN; republished London: Faber and Faber, 2011, →ISBN, page 167:
      The other thing about the time he pushbiked from Hereford back home was that when he stripped off, his body underneath was black.

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  1. ^ Compare “pushbike, n.” and “push-bike, v.” in “push-, comb. form”, in OED Online Paid subscription required, Oxford, Oxfordshire: Oxford University Press, December 2007; “pushbike, n.”, in Lexico, Dictionary.com; Oxford University Press, 2019–present.

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