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chaff

1
[ chaf, chahf ]
/ tʃæf, tʃɑf /
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See synonyms for: chaff / chaffed / chaffing on Thesaurus.com

noun
the husks of grains and grasses that are separated during threshing.
straw cut up for fodder.
worthless matter; refuse.
the membranous, usually dry, brittle bracts of the flowers of certain plants.
Also called window. Military. strips of metal foil dropped by an aircraft to confuse enemy radar by creating false blips.
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Origin of chaff

1
before 1000; Middle English chaf,Old English ceaf; cognate with Middle Low German, Dutch kaf

OTHER WORDS FROM chaff

chaffless, adjectivechafflike, adjective

Other definitions for chaff (2 of 2)

chaff2
[ chaf, chahf ]
/ tʃæf, tʃɑf /

verb (used with or without object)
to mock, tease, or jest in a good-natured way; banter: She chaffed him for working late. They joked and chaffed with each other.
noun
good-natured ridicule or teasing; raillery.

Origin of chaff

2
First recorded in 1640–50; perhaps from chaff1

OTHER WORDS FROM chaff

chaff·ing·ly, adverbun·chaffed, adjectiveun·chaff·ing, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2022

How to use chaff in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for chaff (1 of 2)

chaff1
/ (tʃɑːf) /

noun
the mass of husks, etc, separated from the seeds during threshing
finely cut straw and hay used to feed cattle
something of little worth; rubbish (esp in the phrase separate the wheat from the chaff)
the dry membranous bracts enclosing the flowers of certain composite plants
thin strips of metallic foil released into the earth's atmosphere to confuse radar signals and prevent detection

Derived forms of chaff

chaffy, adjective

Word Origin for chaff

Old English ceaf; related to Old High German keva husk

British Dictionary definitions for chaff (2 of 2)

chaff2
/ (tʃɑːf) /

noun
light-hearted teasing or joking; banter
verb
to tease good-naturedly; banter

Derived forms of chaff

chaffer, noun

Word Origin for chaff

C19: probably slang variant of chafe, perhaps influenced by chaff 1
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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