Try Our Apps


The Best Internet Slang


[chap-muh n] /ˈtʃæp mən/
noun, plural chapmen.
British. a peddler.
Archaic. a merchant.
Origin of chapman
before 900; Middle English; Old English cēapman (cēap buying and selling + man man1); cognate with Dutch koopman, German Kaufmann; see cheap
Related forms
chapmanship, noun


[chap-muh n] /ˈtʃæp mən/
Frank Michler
[mik-ler] /ˈmɪk lər/ (Show IPA),
1864–1945, U.S. ornithologist, museum curator, and author.
George, 1559–1634, English poet, dramatist, and translator.
3. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
Cite This Source
Examples from the Web for chapman
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • About three months after the death of chapman, I was well enough to quit the hospital.

    Ned Myers James Fenimore Cooper
  • Peter, you have worked well for me, but you are no chapman; it is not in your blood.

    Fair Margaret H. Rider Haggard
  • Off to the left, in front of chapman, the lay of the land was more favorable.

    Personal Recollections of a Cavalryman J. H. (James Harvey) Kidd
  • I sent the letter on to chapman for advice, and I have not yet received his reply.

  • “I am a gentleman, not a chapman,” (a retail tradesman) said Jack, superciliously.

    Clare Avery Emily Sarah Holt
British Dictionary definitions for chapman


noun (pl) -men
(archaic) a trader, esp an itinerant pedlar
Derived Forms
chapmanship, noun
Word Origin
Old English cēapman, from cēap buying and selling (see cheap)


George 1559–1634, English dramatist and poet, noted for his translation of Homer
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
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for chapman

"peddler, itinerant tradesman," Middle English form of Old English ceapman "tradesman," from West Germanic compound *kaupman- (cf. Old High German choufman, German Kauffman, Middle Dutch and Dutch koopman), formed with equivalents of man (n.) + West Germanic *kaup- (cf. Old Saxon cop, Old Frisian kap "trade, purchase," Middle Dutch coop, Dutch koop "trade, market, bargain," kauf "trader," Old English ceap "barter, business; a purchase"), from Proto-Germanic *kaupoz- (cf. Danish kjøb "purchase, bargain," Old Norse kaup "bargain, pay;" cf. also Old Church Slavonic kupiti "to buy," a Germanic loan-word), probably an early Germanic borrowing from Latin caupo (genitive cauponis) "petty tradesman, huckster," of unknown origin. Cf. also cheap (adj.).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for chapman

Few English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for chapman

Scrabble Words With Friends

Nearby words for chapman