chaff

noun (1)
\ ˈchaf How to pronounce chaff (audio) \

Definition of chaff

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : the seed coverings and other debris separated from the seed in threshing grain
2 : something comparatively worthless a few kernels of wisdom amid much discursive chaff— Steven Raichlen
3 : the scales borne on the receptacle among the florets in the heads of many composite plants
4 : material (such as strips of foil or clusters of fine wires) ejected into the air for reflecting radar waves (as for confusing an enemy's radar detection) planes equipped with chaff dispensers

chaff

noun (2)

Definition of chaff (Entry 2 of 3)

: light jesting talk : banter

chaff

verb
chaffed; chaffing; chaffs

Definition of chaff (Entry 3 of 3)

transitive verb

: to tease good-naturedly

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from chaff

Noun (1)

chaffy \ ˈcha-​fē How to pronounce chaff (audio) \ adjective

Examples of chaff in a Sentence

Verb chaffed her about the brightly colored shirt she had received as a gift a coworker who likes to chaff at others' expense, and this often results in hurt feelings

First Known Use of chaff

Noun (1)

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Noun (2)

1821, in the meaning defined above

Verb

1827, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

History and Etymology for chaff

Noun (1)

Middle English chaf, from Old English ceaf; akin to Old High German cheva husk

Noun (2)

probably from chaff entry 1

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More About chaff

Time Traveler for chaff

Time Traveler

The first known use of chaff was before the 12th century

See more words from the same century

Dictionary Entries Near chaff

chafewax

chaff

chaffcutter

See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for chaff

Cite this Entry

“Chaff.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/chaff. Accessed 1 Aug. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for chaff

chaff

noun
\ ˈchaf How to pronounce chaff (audio) \

Kids Definition of chaff

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : the husks of grains and grasses separated from the seed in threshing
2 : something worthless

chaff

verb
chaffed; chaffing

Kids Definition of chaff (Entry 2 of 2)

: to tease in a friendly way

More from Merriam-Webster on chaff

Nglish: Translation of chaff for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of chaff for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about chaff

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

Farm Idioms Quiz

  • cow coming home
  • What does 'poke' refer to in the expression 'pig in a poke'?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Typeshift

Anagram puzzles meet word search.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!