Origin of chance

1250–1300; Middle English < Old French chance, cheance < Vulgar Latin *cadentia a befalling, happening; see cadenza
Related formschance·less, adjectiveun·chanced, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

British Dictionary definitions for chance on


/ (tʃɑːns) /



Derived Formschanceful, adjectivechanceless, adjective

Word Origin for chance

C13: from Old French cheance, from cheoir to fall, occur, from Latin cadere
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

Idioms and Phrases with chance on (1 of 2)

chance on

Also, chance upon. Happen upon, find or meet accidentally, as in In Paris we chanced on a wonderful little restaurant, or Andrew chanced upon his karate teacher in the health-food store. [Mid-1500s]

Idioms and Phrases with chance on (2 of 2)


In addition to the idioms beginning with chance

  • chance it
  • chance on

also see:

  • by chance
  • Chinaman's chance
  • eye to the main chance
  • fat chance
  • fighting chance
  • jump at (the chance)
  • not have an earthly chance
  • on the (off) chance
  • snowball's chance in hell
  • sporting chance
  • stand a chance
  • take a chance
  • take one's chances
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.