noun (1)
\ ˈchās How to pronounce chase (audio) \

Definition of chase

 (Entry 1 of 5)

1a : the hunting of wild animals used with the
b : the act of chasing : pursuit The police caught the robbers after a high-speed chase on the highway.
c : an earnest or frenzied seeking after something desired this mad chase of fame— John Dryden
2 : something pursued : quarry A fox was the hunter's chase.
3 : a tract of unenclosed land used as a game preserve
4 : steeplechase sense 1 observed the chase with binoculars
5 : a sequence (as in a movie) in which the characters pursue one another The movie's chases involved cars and helicopters.


verb (1)
chased; chasing

Definition of chase (Entry 2 of 5)

transitive verb

1a : to follow rapidly : pursue a dog chasing a rabbit
b : hunt
c : to follow regularly or persistently with the intention of attracting or alluring He was always chasing after women.
2 obsolete : harass
3 : to seek out often used with down detectives chasing down clues
4 : to cause to depart or flee : drive chase the dog out of the garden
5 : to cause the removal of (a baseball pitcher) by a batting rally
6 : to swing at (a baseball pitched out of the strike zone)

intransitive verb

1 : to chase an animal, person, or thing chase after material possessions
2 : rush, hasten chased all over town looking for a place to stay


verb (2)
chased; chasing

Definition of chase (Entry 3 of 5)

transitive verb

1a : to ornament (metal) by indenting with a hammer and tools without a cutting edge
b : to make by such indentation
c : to set with gems
2a : groove, indent
b : to cut (a thread) with a chaser


noun (2)

Definition of chase (Entry 4 of 5)

1 : groove, furrow
2 : the bore of a cannon
3a : trench
b : a channel (as in a wall) for something to lie in or pass through


noun (3)

Definition of chase (Entry 5 of 5)

: a rectangular steel or iron frame in which letterpress matter is locked (as for printing)

Synonyms & Antonyms for chase

Synonyms: Noun (1)

Synonyms: Verb (1)

Antonyms: Noun (1)

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Choose the Right Synonym for chase

Verb (1)

chase, pursue, follow, trail mean to go after or on the track of something or someone. chase implies going swiftly after and trying to overtake something fleeing or running. a dog chasing a cat pursue suggests a continuing effort to overtake, reach, or attain. pursued the criminal through narrow streets follow puts less emphasis upon speed or intent to overtake. friends followed me home in their car trail may stress a following of tracks or traces rather than a visible object. trail deer trailed a suspect across the country

First Known Use of chase

Noun (1)

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Verb (1)

14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a

Verb (2)

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Noun (2)

1611, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Noun (3)

1612, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for chase

Noun (1)

Middle English, from Anglo-French chace, from chacer — see chase entry 2

Verb (1)

Middle English, from Anglo-French chacer, from Vulgar Latin *captiare — more at catch

Verb (2)

Middle English, modification of Anglo-French enchaser to set

Noun (2)

French chas eye of a needle, from Late Latin capsus enclosed space, alteration of Latin capsa box — more at case

Noun (3)

probably from French châsse frame, reliquary, from Middle French chasse, from Latin capsa

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Time Traveler for chase

Time Traveler

The first known use of chase was in the 13th century

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Cite this Entry

“Chase.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 11 Aug. 2022.

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More Definitions for chase


\ ˈchās How to pronounce chase (audio) \

Kids Definition of chase

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: the act of following quickly in order to capture or catch up with : pursuit Police caught the bank robbers after a chase.


chased; chasing

Kids Definition of chase (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to follow quickly in order to catch up with or capture chase a thief chase a bus
2 : to drive away or out She chased the rabbit away.

Choose the Right Synonym for chase


chase, pursue, and follow mean to go after someone or something. chase is used of someone or something moving swiftly in order to catch up with something. The children chased the ball. pursue is used of a long, continual chase. They pursued the enemy for miles. follow does not suggest speed or a desire to actually catch up with something. This dog followed me home.

Chase biographical name (1)

\ ˈchās How to pronounce Chase (audio) \

Definition of Chase

 (Entry 1 of 2)

Mary Ellen 1887–1973 American educator and author


biographical name (2)

Definition of Chase (Entry 2 of 2)

Sal*mon \ ˈsa-​mən How to pronounce Chase (audio) , ˈsal-​ \ Portland 1808–1873 American statesman; chief justice U.S. Supreme Court (1864–73)

More from Merriam-Webster on chase

Nglish: Translation of chase for Spanish Speakers

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


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