plural chiffs
: the initial sound made by air leaving the mouth of a wind instrument (such as an organ flue pipe or a flute) at the attack (see attack entry 2 sense 5) of a note
The chiff is a sudden, short-lived burst of upper harmonics that occurs whenever an organ key is depressed and a note is sounded.Joel Naumann and James D. Wagoner, Analog Electronic Music Techniques, 1985

called also articulation

Word History



First Known Use

1937, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of chiff was in 1937

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Dictionary Entries Near chiff

Cite this Entry

“Chiff.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 1 Oct. 2023.

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