- the upper area of an escutcheon.
- an ordinary occupying this area.
- in the chief position; highest in rank (used in combination): editor in chief; commander in chief.
- Heraldry.in the upper part of an escutcheon.
Origin of chief
Synonyms for chief
Antonyms for chief
Examples from the Web for sub-chief
Historical Examples of sub-chief
Even a sub-chief of the Dakotas shall not live to be their tool.Under Fire
A youth, but to manhood grown, and wearing the insignia of a sub-chief.Gaspar the Gaucho
The second assistant to a second assistant of a sub-chief of a sub-division may have entered.The Personality of American Cities
He was sub-chief of Morelia, and is often mentioned in the Truth charges.The Putumayo, The Devil's Paradise
In council of the secret clan the war-prophet and the sub-chief voiced for war.The Way of an Indian
- most important; principal
- highest in rank or authority
Word Origin for chief
c.1300, "highest in rank or power; most important or prominent; supreme, best," from Old French chief "chief, principal, first" (10c., Modern French chef), from Vulgar Latin *capum (also source of Spanish and Portuguese cabo, Italian capo, Provençal cap), from Latin caput "head," also "leader, guide, chief person; summit; capital city" (see capitulum).
c.1300, "head, leader, captain; the principal or most important part of anything;" from Old French chief "leader, ruler, head" of something, "capital city" (10c., Modern French chef), from Vulgar Latin *capum, from Latin caput "head," also "leader, chief person; summit; capital city" (see capitulum). Meaning "head of a clan" is from 1570s; later extended to American Indian tribes. Commander-in-chief attested from 1660s.