• synonyms


See more synonyms for chop on Thesaurus.com
verb (used with object), chopped, chop·ping.
  1. to cut or sever with a quick, heavy blow or a series of blows, using an ax, hatchet, etc. (often followed by down, off, etc.): to chop down a tree.
  2. to make or prepare for use by so cutting: to chop logs.
  3. to cut in pieces; mince (often followed by up): to chop up an onion; to chop meat.
  4. (in tennis, cricket, etc.) to hit (a ball) with a chop stroke.
  5. to weed and thin out (growing cotton) with a hoe.
  6. Fox Hunting. (of a hound or pack) to attack and kill (a fox that has not begun to run).
Show More
verb (used without object), chopped, chop·ping.
  1. to make a quick, heavy stroke or a series of strokes, as with an ax.
  2. Boxing. to throw or deliver a short blow, especially a downward one while in a clinch.
  3. (in tennis, cricket, etc.) to employ or deliver a chop stroke.
  4. to go, come, or move suddenly or violently.
Show More
  1. an act or instance of chopping.
  2. a cutting blow.
  3. Boxing. a short blow, especially a downward one, executed while in a clinch.
  4. a piece chopped off.
  5. an individual cut or portion of meat, as mutton, lamb, veal, or pork, usually one containing a rib.
  6. crushed or ground grain used as animal feed.
  7. a short, irregular, broken motion of waves; choppiness: There's too much chop for rowing today.
  8. rough, turbulent water, as of a sea or lake.
  9. (in tennis, cricket, etc.) a chop stroke.
Show More
  1. chop/cut down to size. cut(def 89).
Show More

Origin of chop1

1350–1400; Middle English choppen; variant of chap1

Synonym study

1. See cut.


verb (used without object), chopped, chop·ping.
  1. to turn, shift, or change suddenly: The wind chopped to the west.
  2. to vacillate; change one's mind.
  3. Obsolete.
    1. to barter.
    2. to bandy words; argue.
Show More
  1. chop logic, to reason or dispute argumentatively; draw unnecessary distinctions.
Show More

Origin of chop2

1425–75; variant of obsolete chap barter, Middle English chappen (with vowel as in chapman), chepen, Old English cēapian to trade (derivative of cēap sale, trade; see cheap)


  1. Usually chops. the jaw.
  2. chops,
    1. the oral cavity; mouth.
    2. Slang.the embouchure or technique necessary to play a wind instrument.
    3. Slang.musical ability on any instrument, especially in playing jazz or rock; technical virtuosity.
    4. Slang.the music or musical part played by an instrumentalist, especially a solo passage.
  3. an entranceway, as into a body of water.
  4. Horology. either of two pieces clasping the end of the suspension spring of a pendulum.
Show More
  1. bust one's chops, Slang. to exert oneself.
  2. bust someone's chops, Slang. to annoy with nagging or criticism: Stop busting my chops—I'll get the job done.
  3. lick one's chops, to await with pleasure; anticipate; relish: He was already licking his chops over the expected inheritance.
Show More
Also chap.

Origin of chop3

1350–1400; Middle English; perhaps special use of chop1


  1. an official stamp or seal, or a permit or clearance, especially as formerly used in India and China.
  2. a design, corresponding to a brand or trademark, stamped on goods to indicate their identity or quality.
  3. the signature stamp of an artist, printmaker, etc., testifying to the authenticity of a work.
  4. quality, class, or grade: a musician of the first chop.
Show More

Origin of chop4

First recorded in 1605–15, chop is from the Hindi word chāp impression, stamp
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for chop

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

British Dictionary definitions for chop


verb chops, chopping or chopped
  1. (often foll by down or off) to cut (something) with a blow from an axe or other sharp tool
  2. (tr) to produce or make in this mannerto chop firewood
  3. (tr often foll by up) to cut into pieces
  4. (tr) British informal to dispense with or reduce
  5. (intr) to move quickly or violently
  6. sport to hit (a ball) sharply downwards
  7. boxing martial arts to punch or strike (an opponent) with a short sharp blow
  8. Western African an informal word for eat
Show More
  1. a cutting blow
  2. the act or an instance of chopping
  3. a piece chopped off
  4. a slice of mutton, lamb, or pork, generally including a rib
  5. Australian and NZ slang a share (esp in the phrase get or hop in for one's chop)
  6. Western African an informal word for food
  7. Australian and NZ a competition of skill and speed in chopping logs
  8. sport a sharp downward blow or stroke
  9. not much chop Australian and NZ informal not much good; poor
  10. the chop slang dismissal from employment
Show More

Word Origin

C16: variant of chap 1


verb chops, chopping or chopped
  1. (intr) to change direction suddenly; vacillate (esp in the phrase chop and change)
  2. obsolete to barter
  3. chop logic to use excessively subtle or involved logic or argument
Show More

Word Origin

Old English ceapian to barter; see cheap, chapman


  1. a design stamped on goods as a trademark, esp in the Far East
Show More

Word Origin

C17: from Hindi chhāp
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 chop


"to cut with a quick blow," mid-14c., of uncertain origin, perhaps from Old North French choper (Old French coper "to cut, cut off," 12c., Modern French couper), from Vulgar Latin *cuppare "to behead," from a root meaning "head," but influenced in Old French by couper "to strike." Related: Chopped; chopping.

Show More


"shift quickly," 1530s, earlier "to bargain" (early 15c.), ultimately from Old English ceapian "to bargain" (see cheap); here with a sense of "changing back and forth," probably from common expressions such as to chop and change "barter." To chop logic is recorded from 1570s. Related: Chopped; chopping.

Show More


"act of chopping," mid-14c., from chop (v.1). Meaning "piece cut off" is mid-15c.; specifically "slice of meat" from mid-17c. Sense of "a blow, strike" is from 1550s.

Show More
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper