\ ˈchant \
chanted; chanting; chants

Definition of chant 

(Entry 1 of 2)

intransitive verb

1 : to make melodic sounds with the voice especially : to sing a chant
2 : to recite something in a monotonous repetitive tone protesters were chanting outside

transitive verb

1 : to utter as in chanting
2 : to celebrate or praise in song or chant



Definition of chant (Entry 2 of 2)

2a : plainsong
b : a rhythmic monotonous utterance or song
c : a composition for chanting

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Synonyms for chant

Synonyms: Verb

intonate, intone, sing

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Examples of chant in a Sentence


The crowd began chanting her name. They chanted “Sara, Sara” until she came back on stage. Protesters were chanting outside the governor's home. They were chanting in Arabic. Priests chanted the Catholic Mass in Latin.


Our chant was “Peace now, peace now!”. Chant is often used as a form of meditation and prayer.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

The students chanted for a while longer, then left the room. Michelle Baruchman, The Seattle Times, "Trump pick for acting defense secretary brings a knack for complex issues honed at UW, Boeing," 24 Dec. 2018 The day after the election at a school assembly, the students were chanting, ‘Trump! Rachel Anspach, Teen Vogue, "Trump's Policies Are Increasing Teen Stress and Eroding Mental Health," 12 Nov. 2018 The fans were chanting before the game even started. Mitch Albom, Detroit Free Press, "Mitch Albom: World Cup 2018 fever finds an unlikely patient," 24 June 2018 The crowd repeatedly chanted at the bicycle cops and shook fists at them. Sam Stanton, Darrell Smith, Ed Fletcher And Ryan Sabalow, sacbee, "Protest of Sacramento police shooting ends after blocking traffic but not Kings fans | The Sacramento Bee," 29 Mar. 2018 Protesters, chanting pro-rebel slogans and demanding the end of Indian rule in Kashmir, blocked a major highway and fought pitched battles with government forces. Aijaz Hussain, The Christian Science Monitor, "India takes control of Kashmir territory," 25 June 2018 When combined with other musical elements (e.g., dancing, chanting, whistling, conch shell playing, etc.), the music has a polyphonic texture (many independent voices or instruments). Smithsonian, "Andean Solstice Celebrations Capture the Wondrous Churn of Spacetime," 22 June 2018 Many frequently chant against Hernandez’s government, blaming him for their dire straits. Freddy Cuevas, The Seattle Times, "Former Honduran president criticizes brother’s prosecution," 13 Nov. 2018 In a pivotal early moment in 1968’s Rosemary’s Baby, Rosemary Woodhouse (Mia Farrow) is raped and impregnated by Satan as a coven of chanting witches looms over her., "Has Roman Polanski Ruined Rosemary's Baby's Legacy? No.," 12 June 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

At the start of every day, staff members like the Valley’s Cultural Programs Manager, Ka'ulameialani Diamond, perform an oli (Hawaiian protocol chant), thanking their ancestors for allowing us to use the land. Annemarie Conte, Woman's Day, "I Took My Daughter to Hawaii to Teach Her How to Be a Better Traveler," 1 Aug. 2018 The Shorewood march took on a somber tone — there were no chants or slogans shouted over a bullhorn — as demonstrators sought to convey the seriousness of their concerns. Rick Barrett, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Immigrant-rights marchers rally in Wisconsin and the nation," 30 June 2018 There were occasional chants, some fans wore Iran jerseys or waved Iranian flags, and someone honked sporadically on a vuvuzela. Danny Mcdonald,, "In Cambridge, World Cup brings a jubilant reprieve for local Iranians," 16 June 2018 There were chants and songs from the legislative galleries. Rick Pearson,, "Equal Rights Amendment approval comes 36 years after raucous Capitol protests," 1 June 2018 March For Our Lives participants in Detroit chant in Hart Plaza. Kathleen Gray, Detroit Free Press, "Michigan Senate Dems propose $100M more for school safety measures," 12 Apr. 2018 And a former soccer player, Alexei Smertin, has been hired to be an inspector for racist chants during matches. The Christian Science Monitor, "Why Russians may bare their teeth at the World Cup," 13 June 2018 The Russian Football Association was fined roughly $30,000 by FIFA last month, for racist chants during a friendly played against France in St. Petersburg. Hilary Mcgann, CNN, "Russia 2018: LGBT members face 'significant risk' at World Cup, UK Foreign Office warns," 8 June 2018 That elicited chants from the home crowd for McConnell, who finished with a career-high 19 points to go along with seven rebounds and five assists in 39 minutes. Michael Singer, USA TODAY, "76ers handle Celtics in Game 4 to avoid second-round sweep," 7 May 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'chant.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of chant


14th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1


15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 2a

History and Etymology for chant


Middle English chaunten, from Anglo-French chanter, from Latin cantare, frequentative of canere to sing; akin to Old English hana rooster, Old Irish canid he sings

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Statistics for chant

Last Updated

4 Jan 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for chant

The first known use of chant was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for chant



English Language Learners Definition of chant

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to say (a word or phrase) many times in a rhythmic way usually loudly and with other people

: to sing words and especially religious prayers by using a small number of musical notes that are repeated many times



English Language Learners Definition of chant (Entry 2 of 2)

: a word or phrase that is repeated in a rhythmic way usually loudly and by a group of people

: a kind of singing using a small number of musical notes that are repeated many times


\ ˈchant \
chanted; chanting

Kids Definition of chant

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to sing using a small number of musical tones
2 : to recite or speak in a rhythmic usually loud way The crowd began chanting her name.



Kids Definition of chant (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a melody in which several words or syllables are sung on one tone
2 : something spoken in a rhythmic usually loud way

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More from Merriam-Webster on chant

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with chant

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for chant

Spanish Central: Translation of chant

Nglish: Translation of chant for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of chant for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about chant

Comments on chant

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involving abstract or general statements

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