chill

1 of 3

noun

1
a
: a sensation of cold accompanied by shivering (as due to illness)
He had caught a chill that night, and was now down with a fever.Wilkie Collins
usually plural
If you have a cough, fever and chills and are not breathing as easily as usual, you might have a cold or the flu.Linda Searing
Over the next few days, my body followed up with a series of messages: you have a sore throat; you have a fever; you have the chills.John Herrman
b
: an intense shivery sensation : shiver, shudder
especially : one caused by a strong emotion (such as fear)
Do you like a good scare? The sort of story, or moment, that sends a chill down your spine and makes the hair on your arms stand up like porcupine quills? Katherine Scott Crawford
often plural
a song so beautiful it gives me chills
… this is where [Stephen] King shines, creating those aforementioned creepy scenes that gave me the chills. Katherine Whitt
c
: a disagreeable sensation of coldness
When you venture outside on a cold day, chances are you feel the biggest chill in your fingers.Tamekia Reece
2
: a moderate but disagreeable degree of cold
a chill in the air
3
: a check to enthusiasm or warmth of feeling
And a chill fell over the service as mourners … carried a casket draped in white to the altar.Katherine Creag and Jennifer Millman

chill

2 of 3

adjective

sometimes chiller; sometimes chillest
1
a
: moderately cold
b
: cold, raw
2
: affected by cold
chill travelers
3
: distant, formal
a chill reception
4
: depressing, dispiriting
chill penuryThomas Gray
5
informal : having a laid-back style or easy demeanor
She looked just like Joey Potter … Really young and super chill. No one was paying any attention. It was a laid-back situation.Emma Pearse
We're very casual. I love how at City Hall people come in everything from wedding gowns to jeans. It's so mellow and chill, just how we like it.Erin Burnett
chillness noun

chill

3 of 3

verb

chilled; chilling; chills

intransitive verb

1
a
: to become cold
b
: to shiver or quake with or as if with cold
2
: to become taken with a chill
3

transitive verb

1
a
: to make cold or chilly
chilled by a cold wind
b
: to make cool especially without freezing
chill the wine
2
: to affect as if with cold : dispirit

Examples of chill in a Sentence

Noun There was a chill in the autumn air. He closed the windows to keep out the chill. Her symptoms include chills and a fever. He caught a chill that turned into a bad cold. The novel's final scene gave him the chills. Her words sent chills down my spine. Adjective The chill weather kept us indoors. were met with a chill gaze when they arrived home late from the party Verb Chill the dessert for one hour before serving it. Let the dessert chill for one hour before serving it. Here's a ghost story that will chill you. Her screams chilled me to the bone. a horrible sight that chilled my bones He thinks his parents are way too uptight and says they should just chill. I decided to stay home and chill.
Recent Examples on the Web
Noun
But its nickname is break-bone fever, for the severe chills that accompany a fever that can spike as high as 104°F. Alice Park, TIME, 15 July 2024 The process resulted in thousands of layoffs and billions in additional expenses, which gave investors a chill over the last two quarters. Rocio Fabbro, Quartz, 12 July 2024
Adjective
Multiple messages from his mother’s nurse is definitely not a good sign for The Bear’s chillest employee. … while Carmy’s mom is still starting drama Things are … not great between the surviving Berzatto children and their mother, played by Jamie Lee Curtis. Scottie Andrew, CNN, 25 June 2024 This is a pulsing, driven, beat-heavy show, not chill or moody or spectral or dreamlike the way other Cirque du Soleil spectacles have been. Christopher Arnott, Hartford Courant, 14 Apr. 2024
Verb
Watching the tapes in chronological order, he was chilled. Christopher Goffard, Los Angeles Times, 17 July 2024 For the best results, chill the soup base for at least two hours so the flavors blend. Bethany Thayer, Detroit Free Press, 13 July 2024 See all Example Sentences for chill 

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'chill.' 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

Middle English chile chill, frost, from Old English ciele; akin to Old English ceald cold

First Known Use

Noun

1601, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Adjective

circa 1540, in the meaning defined at sense 1b

Verb

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

Time Traveler
The first known use of chill was in the 14th century

Dictionary Entries Near chill

Cite this Entry

“Chill.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/chill. Accessed 24 Jul. 2024.

Kids Definition

chill

1 of 3 noun
1
: a feeling of cold accompanied by shivering
chills and fever
2
: a strong sensation of shivering especially from an emotion (as fear)
often used in plural
gave me chills
3
: a moderate but unpleasant amount of cold
there was a chill in the air

chill

2 of 3 adjective
1
: unpleasantly cold : raw
nights grew chill
2
: not friendly
a chill greeting
3
informal : having a relaxed style or manner : laid-back
chillness noun

chill

3 of 3 verb
1
: to make or become cold or chilly
2
: to cool without freezing
chill the pudding for dessert
3
: to affect as if with cold
we were chilled by the ghost story
4
5
: to spend time relaxing or socializing
chiller noun

Medical Definition

chill

1 of 2 noun
1
: a sensation of cold accompanied by shivering
2
: a disagreeable sensation of coldness

chill

2 of 2 intransitive verb
1
a
: to become cold
b
: to shiver or quake with or as if with cold
2
: to become affected with a chill

transitive verb

: to make cold or chilly

Legal Definition

chill

transitive verb
: to discourage especially through fear of penalty : have a chilling effect on
statutes which may chill the exercise of…free expressionM. H. Redish

More from Merriam-Webster on chill

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