chase

1 of 5

noun (1)

1
a
: 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 fameJohn 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.

chase

2 of 5

verb (1)

chased; chasing

transitive verb

1
a
: 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

chase

3 of 5

verb (2)

chased; chasing

transitive verb

1
a
: 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
2
a
b
: to cut (a thread) with a chaser

chase

4 of 5

noun (2)

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

chase

5 of 5

noun (3)

: a rectangular steel or iron frame in which letterpress matter is locked (as for printing)
Choose the Right Synonym for chase

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

Examples of chase in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web
Noun
Minor incident blows up Crudup’s arrest on a warm July evening three years ago began with a minor altercation that ballooned into an all-out chase by dozens of cops and the eventual videotaped beat-down of the Maryland man. Charles Rabin, Miami Herald, 28 Mar. 2024 Her 24-year-old son was killed by an officer at the end of a foot chase in July 2013. Katie Moore, Kansas City Star, 25 Mar. 2024 At the time of his escape, Meade was serving a 20-year sentence for firing several shots at law enforcement officers during a high-speed chase while fleeing a traffic stop in 2016. Alicia Victoria Lozano, NBC News, 23 Mar. 2024 The standoff began following a short police chase in which the suspect crashed his vehicle, according to police and witnesses. Nicole Lopez, Fort Worth Star-Telegram, 23 Mar. 2024 Skylar Meade, 31 — who was serving nearly 8 years of a 20-year sentence for having shot at a deputy in 2016 during a high speed chase — and Nicholas Umphenour, 28, were last seen fleeing in a gray 2020 Honda Civic with Idaho license plates. Dave Quinn, Peoplemag, 21 Mar. 2024 Meade was sentenced to 20 years in prison in 2017 for firing shots at a Twin Falls sheriff's sergeant during a high-speed chase. Stephen Sorace, Fox News, 20 Mar. 2024 On March 11, White said a round was fired at an officer near Joy Road and Evergreen Avenue during a foot chase involving a group of juveniles accused of carjacking. Andrea May Sahouri, Detroit Free Press, 19 Mar. 2024 Amy, 61, cut straight to the chase and asked Caryn to see her diamond ring. Esther Kang, Peoplemag, 20 Mar. 2024
Verb
Advertisement The 10-year-old daughter said that her mother would beat her with the leg of a chair and that her maternal grandmother would do the same, chasing the children around the house to hit them with it, according to the statement by therapist Patricia Ramsey. Noah Goldberg, Los Angeles Times, 2 Apr. 2024 Halfway through the video, the tables turned and Joanna was then chased by Crew, who ended up tripping, falling and losing his pants. Hannah Sacks, Peoplemag, 1 Apr. 2024 The next morning, at 3 A.M. Pacific Time, Yoshinobu Yamamoto took the mound for his début and was chased out of the game, giving up five runs in a single inning. Louisa Thomas, The New Yorker, 30 Mar. 2024 And yet, by privileging domestic politics over serious policy, Biden has found himself, Commander-like, chasing his own tail. Matthew Continetti, National Review, 30 Mar. 2024 And they weren’t chased by Good Ole Boys from Bob’s Country Bunker, but one of them could have been one. Ryan Craig, Forbes, 29 Mar. 2024 Deputies and police arrived and chased Soto over multiple fences before taking him into custody. Stephen Sorace, Fox News, 28 Mar. 2024 But the Aztecs’ players didn’t, and suddenly Lamont Butler was a step behind Hawkins chasing him across the baseline and then up, off one screen, then another, then another. Mark Zeigler, San Diego Union-Tribune, 28 Mar. 2024 While Marvel’s success since then is not in dispute, at the time the idea of Disney chasing young men via the comic book brand was seen as a real risk. Alex Weprin, The Hollywood Reporter, 27 Mar. 2024

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'chase.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

Etymology

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

First Known Use

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

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

Dictionary Entries Near chase

Cite this Entry

“Chase.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/chase. Accessed 12 Apr. 2024.

Kids Definition

chase

1 of 3 noun
1
a
: the hunting of animals
used with the
b
: the act of chasing : pursuit
saw the thief and gave chase
2
: something pursued
3
: a scene (as in a movie) where the characters chase one another

chase

2 of 3 verb
chased; chasing
1
: to follow in order to capture or overtake
chase a thief
chase the bus
2
: hunt entry 1 sense 1
chase the fox
3
: to drive away or out
chase a dog off the lawn
chaser noun

chase

3 of 3 verb
chased; chasing
: to decorate (metal) by indenting with a hammer and tools without cutting edges

Biographical Definition

Chase 1 of 2

biographical name (1)

Mary Ellen 1887–1973 American educator and author

Chase

2 of 2

biographical name (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

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