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[chal-is] /ˈtʃæl ɪs/
  1. a cup for the wine of the Eucharist or Mass.
  2. the wine contained in it.
a drinking cup or goblet.
a cuplike blossom.
Origin of chalice
before 900; Middle English < Middle French < Latin calici- (stem of calix) cup; replacing Middle English caliz, calc, Old English calic < Latin calici-, as above
Related forms
[chal-ist] /ˈtʃæl ɪst/ (Show IPA),
adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for chalice
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • It would have seemed as sacrilegious as to take the chalice off the church altar, and melt its silver and jewels in the fire.

    The Waters of Edera Louise de la Rame, a.k.a. Ouida
  • The ritual of chalice and platter has servitors to see to it.

  • To Mark it seemed now the crowning touch of mercy that the criminal should be allowed to drink deep of the chalice.

    Great Possessions Mrs. Wilfrid Ward
  • The Offertory having been recited, the priest uncovered the chalice.

  • When, after the offertory, Pierre uncovered the chalice he felt contempt for himself.

British Dictionary definitions for chalice


(poetic) a drinking cup; goblet
(Christianity) a gold or silver cup containing the wine at Mass
the calyx of a flower, esp a cup-shaped calyx
Word Origin
C13: from Old French, from Latin calix cup; related to Greek kalux calyx
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for chalice

early 14c., from Anglo-French chalice, from Old French chalice, collateral form of calice (Modern French calice), from Latin calicem (nominative calix) "cup," cognate with Greek kylix "cup, drinking cup, cup of a flower," from PIE root *kal- "cup." Ousted Old English cognate cælic, an ecclesiastical borrowing of the Latin word, and earlier Middle English caliz, from Old North French.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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