See more synonyms for chase on
verb (used with object), chased, chas·ing.
  1. to pursue in order to seize, overtake, etc.: The police officer chased the thief.
  2. to pursue with intent to capture or kill, as game; hunt: to chase deer.
  3. to follow or devote one's attention to with the hope of attracting, winning, gaining, etc.: He chased her for three years before she consented to marry him.
  4. to drive or expel by force, threat, or harassment: She chased the cat out of the room.
verb (used without object), chased, chas·ing.
  1. to follow in pursuit: to chase after someone.
  2. to rush or hasten: We spent the weekend chasing around from one store to another.
  1. the act of chasing; pursuit: The chase lasted a day.
  2. an object of pursuit; something chased.
  3. Chiefly British. a private game preserve; a tract of privately owned land reserved for, and sometimes stocked with, animals and birds to be hunted.
  4. British. the right of keeping game or of hunting on the land of others.
  5. a steeplechase.
  6. the chase, the sport or occupation of hunting.
Verb Phrases
  1. give chase, to pursue: The hunt began and the dogs gave chase.
  1. cut to the chase, Informal. to get to the main point.

Origin of chase

1250–1300; Middle English chacen < Middle French chasser to hunt, Old French chacier < Vulgar Latin *captiāre; see catch
Related formschase·a·ble, adjective
Can be confusedcelibate chased chaste chest

Synonyms for chase

See more synonyms for on Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

British Dictionary definitions for give chase


  1. to follow or run after (a person, animal, or goal) persistently or quickly
  2. (tr; often foll by out, away, or off) to force to run (away); drive (out)
  3. (tr) informal to court (a member of the opposite sex) in an unsubtle manner
  4. (tr often foll by up) informal to pursue persistently and energetically in order to obtain results, information, etcchase up the builders and get a delivery date
  5. (intr) informal to hurry; rush
  1. the act of chasing; pursuit
  2. any quarry that is pursued
  3. British an unenclosed area of land where wild animals are preserved to be hunted
  4. British the right to hunt a particular quarry over the land of others
  5. the chase the act or sport of hunting
  6. short for steeplechase
  7. real tennis a ball that bounces twice, requiring the point to be played again
  8. cut to the chase informal, mainly US to start talking about the important aspects of something
  9. give chase to pursue (a person, animal, or thing) actively
Derived Formschaseable, adjective

Word Origin for chase

C13: from Old French chacier, from Vulgar Latin captiāre (unattested), from Latin captāre to pursue eagerly, from capere to take; see catch


  1. printing a rectangular steel or cast-iron frame into which metal type and blocks making up pages are locked for printing or plate-making
  2. the part of a gun barrel from the front of the trunnions to the muzzle
  3. a groove or channel, esp one that is cut in a wall to take a pipe, cable, etc
verb (tr)
  1. Also: chamfer to cut a groove, furrow, or flute in (a surface, column, etc)

Word Origin for chase

C17 (in the sense: frame for letterpress matter): probably from French châsse frame (in the sense: bore of a cannon, etc): from Old French chas enclosure, from Late Latin capsus pen for animals; both from Latin capsa case ²


verb (tr)
  1. Also: enchase to ornament (metal) by engraving or embossing
  2. to form or finish (a screw thread) with a chaser

Word Origin for chase

C14: from Old French enchasser enchase
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 give chase



mid-13c., chace, "a hunt," from Old French chace "a hunt, a chase; hunting ground" (12c.), from chacier (see chase (v.)). Meaning "a pursuit" (of an enemy, etc.) is early 14c.



"bore of a gun barrel," 1640s, from French chas "eye of a needle; enclosure," from Vulgar Latin *capsum, variant of Latin capsa "box" (see case (n.2)).



c.1300, chacen "to hunt; to cause to go away; put to flight," from Old French chacier "to hunt, ride swiftly, strive for" (12c., Modern French chasser), from Vulgar Latin *captiare (source of Italian cacciare, Catalan casar, Spanish cazar, Portuguese caçar "to chase, hunt;" see catch (v.)).

Meaning "run after" developed mid-14c. Related: Chased; chasing. Older European words for "pursue" often also cover "persecute" (e.g. Greek dioko, Old English ehtan); modern ones often derive from words used primarily for the hunting of animals.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Idioms and Phrases with give chase

give chase

Pursue, as in The police gave chase to the robber. [c. 1700]


see ambulance chaser; cut to the chase; give chase; go fly a kite (chase yourself); lead a merry chase; run (chase) after; wild goose chase.

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.