any scarabaeid beetle.

Origin of chafer

before 1000; Middle English cheaffer, chaver, Old English ceofor; akin to German Käfer Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for chafer

Historical Examples of chafer

  • As the chafer spoke they heard a shrill squeak overhead which chilled them to the very marrow.

    Little Johannes

    Frederik van Eeden

  • Then the chafer, who was by a whole day the elder, disappeared among the blades of grass, leaving the other greatly impressed.

    Little Johannes

    Frederik van Eeden

  • A chafer buzzed by, a small black cat played with its tail on some steps in a recess.

    The Freelands

    John Galsworthy

  • A single eye in his head, as broad as an oxhide, as black as a chafer, with three pupils therein.

  • Wide as an oxhide was the single eye protruding from his forehead, with seven pupils therein, which were black as a chafer.

British Dictionary definitions for chafer



any of various scarabaeid beetles, such as the cockchafer and rose chafer

Word Origin for chafer

Old English ceafor; related to Old Saxon kevera, Old High German chevar
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

Word Origin and History for chafer

kind of beetle, Old English ceafor "beetle, cock-chafer," from Proto-Germanic *kabraz- (cf. Old Saxon kevera, Dutch kever, Old High German chevar, German Käfer), literally "gnawer," from PIE *gep(h)- "jaw, mouth" (see jowl (n.1)).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper