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See also: Chase and čhase



  • IPA(key): /t͡ʃeɪs/
  • (file)
  • (file)
  • Rhymes: -eɪs

Etymology 1[edit]

From Middle English chacen, from Anglo-Norman chacer, Old French chacier, from Late Latin captiāre, from Latin captāre, frequentative of capere. Compare French chasser (to hunt”, “to chase), Spanish cazar (to hunt), Portuguese caçar (to hunt) , see Norwegian skysse (to hunt). Doublet of catch and related to capture.

Displaced native Old English ōht, ēhtnes, and wāþ. Broadly overtook Old English huntaþ.

Alternative forms[edit]


chase (countable and uncountable, plural chases)

  1. The act of one who chases another; a pursuit.
  2. A hunt; the act of hunting; the pursuit of game.
    • 1861, Elizabeth Gaskell, The Grey Woman:
      By-and-by, she wandered away to an unnecessary revelation of her master's whereabouts: gone to help in the search for his landlord, the Sieur de Poissy, who lived at the château just above, and who had not returned from his chase the day before; so the intendant imagined he might have met with some accident, and had summoned the neighbours to beat the forest and the hill-side.
    • 1981, William Irwin Thompson, The Time Falling Bodies Take to Light: Mythology, Sexuality and the Origins of Culture, London: Rider/Hutchinson & Co., page 134:
      Through male bonding, the subculture of the hunt caught up in the mystique of the chase, the hunting party became a military force, and men discovered that they need not stop at defense: they could go out to hunt for other people's wealth.
  3. (uncountable) A children's game where one player chases another.
    • 1996, Marla Pender McGhee, Quick & Fun Learning Activities for 1 Year Olds, page 25:
      Some children like to be caught when playing chase, and others do not.
    • 2009, Martin J. Levin, We Were Relentless: A Family's Journey to Overcome Disability, page 41:
      So we played chase up and down the concourses of the airport.
  4. (Britain) A large country estate where game may be shot or hunted.
    • 1852 March – 1853 September, Charles Dickens, chapter 14, in Bleak House, London: Bradbury and Evans, [], published 1853, →OCLC:
      Outside, the stately oaks, rooted for ages in the green ground which has never known ploughshare, but was still a chase when kings rode to battle with sword and shield and rode a-hunting with bow and arrow, bear witness to his greatness.
  5. Anything being chased, especially a vessel in time of war.
  6. (obsolete) A wild animal that is hunted.
    Synonym: game
  7. (nautical) Any of the guns that fire directly ahead or astern; either a bow chase or stern chase.
  8. (real tennis) The occurrence of a second bounce by the ball in certain areas of the court, giving the server the chance, later in the game, to "play off" the chase from the receiving end and possibly win the point.
  9. (real tennis) A division of the floor of a gallery, marked by a figure or otherwise; the spot where a ball falls, and between which and the dedans the adversary must drive the ball in order to gain a point.
  10. (cycling) One or more riders who are ahead of the peloton and trying to join the race or stage leaders.
  11. (music) A series of brief improvised jazz solos by a number of musicians taking turns.
Derived terms[edit]


chase (third-person singular simple present chases, present participle chasing, simple past and past participle chased)

  1. (transitive) To pursue.
    1. (transitive) To follow at speed.
    2. (transitive) To hunt.
    3. (transitive) To seek to attain.
      The team are chasing their first home win this season.
    4. (transitive) To persistently pursue someone as a sexual or romantic partner.
      He spends all his free time chasing girls.
      • 1997, Kevin Smith, Chasing Amy, spoken by Silent Bob:
        She was the girl, I know that now. But I pushed her away. So, I've spent every day since then chasing Amy… so to speak.
      • 2011, “Call Me Maybe”, performed by Carly Rae Jepsen:
        But here's my number, so call me, maybe / And all the other boys try to chase me
    5. (transitive, nautical) To pursue a vessel in order to destroy, capture or interrogate her.
  2. (transitive) To consume another beverage immediately after drinking hard liquor, typically something better tasting or less harsh such as soda or beer; to use a drink as a chaser.
    I need something to chase this shot with.
    • 2015, John Fogerty, Fortunate Son, New York: Little, Brown and Company, →ISBN, page 401:
      John ordered quite a few drinks. I think I stopped at four. He kept ordering straight shots of tequila and chasing them with a beer. Then he’d tear off the filter on his cigarette before smoking it.
  3. (transitive, cricket) To attempt to win by scoring the required number of runs in the final innings.
    Australia will be chasing 217 for victory on the final day.
  4. (transitive, baseball) To swing at a pitch outside of the strike zone, typically an outside pitch.
    Jones chases one out of the zone for strike two.
  5. (transitive, baseball) To produce enough offense to cause the pitcher to be removed.
    The rally chased the starter.
Derived terms[edit]
See also[edit]

Etymology 2[edit]

Perhaps from French châsse (case”, “reliquary), from Old French chasse, from Latin capsa. Doublet of case, cash, and chasse.


chase (plural chases)

  1. (printing) A rectangular steel or iron frame into which pages or columns of type are locked for printing or plate-making.
    • 1920, Robert F. Salade, chapter IX, in How Paper Boxes are Made:
      The die-maker should work upon the surface of an imposing table. First, he places on the table the chase in which the die is to be locked up. Second, he fills in the chase with regular printer’s wood furniture, leaving space in the center for the die, and placing locking quoins near the top of the chase and on the right-hand side of the chase. Third, the cutting and creasing rules are set in the open space in the center of the chase, filling in with metal or wood furniture.

Etymology 3[edit]

Possibly from obsolete French chas (groove”, “enclosure), from Old French, from Latin capsa (box). Or perhaps a shortening or derivative of enchase. Doublet of case, cash, and chasse.


chase (plural chases)

  1. A groove cut in an object; a slot: the chase for the quarrel on a crossbow.
  2. (architecture) A trench or channel or other encasement structure for encasing (archaically spelled enchasing) drainpipes or wiring; a hollow space in the wall of a building encasing ventilation ducts, chimney flues, wires, cables or plumbing.
  3. The part of a gun in front of the trunnions.
  4. The cavity of a mold.
  5. (shipbuilding) A kind of joint by which an overlap joint is changed to a flush joint by means of a gradually deepening rabbet, as at the ends of clinker-built boats.
Derived terms[edit]


chase (third-person singular simple present chases, present participle chasing, simple past and past participle chased)

  1. (transitive) To groove; indent.
  2. (transitive) To place piping or wiring in a groove encased within a wall or floor, or in a hidden space encased by a wall.
    chase the pipe
  3. (transitive) To cut (the thread of a screw).
  4. (transitive) To decorate (metal) by engraving or embossing.

Further reading[edit]