Definition of chip in English:



  • 1A small piece of something removed in the course of chopping, cutting, or breaking a hard material such as wood or stone.

    ‘granite chips’
    • ‘She sent me out for chips and wood to start the fire.’
    • ‘He lifted it and hacked at the door again, and again, and small chips of wood started to fly off.’
    • ‘Jabbing at the wood, they remove chips three to six inches tong.’
    • ‘He looked over at her, her eyes like hard chips of granite, sparkling with the light from the fire but remaining hard.’
    • ‘Burlap bags brimmed with fragrant leaves and chips of various woods.’
    • ‘I'm a sucker for hickory chips but anything from mesquite chips to apple wood can add a distinctive flavour to your favourite dish.’
    • ‘Alice's zombie boyfriend is pounding the bathroom door, sending little chips of paint and wood cascading to the tiled floor.’
    • ‘Nests are lined with bark chips or wood shavings or are a shallow cup made of roots, leaves and other plant fibers.’
    • ‘He was a mountaintop-tree expert with a truck and a crew and machines that chopped up trees into chips.’
    • ‘A Volkswagen Beetle left the road around 2.25 pm, thought to have skidded on newly laid stone chips.’
    • ‘Sympathising with the labourers in quarry fields, they say, women workers engaged in the work are unmindful of tiny stone chips embedded in their skins.’
    • ‘The blast had knocked two of them down to the ground, along with chips of wood and brush being scattered everywhere.’
    • ‘I felt myself shiver and held onto myself in the dark as if I were a mere chip of wood or paper caught in a riptide.’
    • ‘Plane with the grain of the wood whenever possible, to avoid catching and lifting chips of wood.’
    • ‘The nuts are then crushed with lime and catechu, a scarlet and astringent extract made by boiling chips of wood from the areca palm.’
    • ‘The landowner gets quick cash, the company gets wood for chips, and workers at local sawmills get laid off.’
    • ‘Scraps of cloth and chips of wood lay strewn across the room.’
    • ‘The entire angel burst into flames, and stone chips began to flake away as Frost scrambled back for cover, gripping the small familiar in two hands.’
    • ‘Weeds often cause problems so use an ornamental ground cover or spread pebbles or stone chips.’
    • ‘To make wood-chip mulch, tow a chipper to the brush pile you left in the woods and blow the chips right into the trailer.’
    fragment, piece, bit
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    1. 1.1A hole or mark on a hard object or surface where a small piece has broken off.
      ‘keep an eye out for any scratches or chips on the bodywork that might need treating’
      • ‘I noticed Rob had a pretty good set of china, except that it showed its age with minor chips and scratches in the decal.’
      • ‘It's a good way to discover scratches, chips and dents early.’
      • ‘Repairing chips and scratches on older pieces may present a color match problem.’
      • ‘Those pieces with the minutest chip or flaw were smashed.’
      • ‘Within two months after completion, the undermounted sink developed scratches, chips and discoloration.’
      • ‘Remove dints and scratches and chips from cars; detail your car inside and out and respray the car, for $1000.’
      • ‘If you're not prepared to rigorously keep up that pristine appearance, then the ensuing scuff marks, chips and cracks are sadly all too obvious.’
      • ‘Moreover, the chips and scars get more numerous as you approach the corner of the street - which is where the bomb must surely have landed.’
      • ‘A chip or nick on the top of the jar may not allow the jar to seal, and scratches may cause the jar to break during heat processing.’
      • ‘She also doesn't mind imperfection, the odd chip or scratch.’
      • ‘Any cracks, chips, holes, dips or spalls should be repaired in order to achieve a flat surface.’
      • ‘Although they are smooth, there are some with chips and faults and mixtures of two different types of rock.’
      • ‘There were no obvious tool marks, chips or defects, and the finish was perfectly consistent down to the sudden transition at the base of every fold.’
      nick, crack, snick, scratch
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    2. 1.2British [mass noun]Wood or woody fibre split into thin strips and used for weaving hats or baskets.
      • ‘I also found a nice handmade chip basket in different colored wood.’
  • 2British A long rectangular piece of deep-fried potato.

    ‘he always enjoyed fish and chips’
    • ‘A notice indicated that at lunchtime and in the evening you could indulge in steak and kidney pudding, chicken and leek pudding or spring rolls with chips or jacket potatoes.’
    • ‘Potato is a vegetable (well, just) and hot chips are made of potato.’
    • ‘All were served with a choice of chips or baked potato with a choice of butter or sour cream, and salad or vegetables which were cauliflower in cheese sauce or hubbard squash or salad.’
    • ‘I ate potatoes, chips and pasta to restore all the energy in my body so I was more explosive.’
    • ‘Stir again then serve with potatoes, chips, rice or pasta.’
    • ‘If people are not eating enough fruit and veg then potatoes, including chips, are important.’
    • ‘Serve the fish and paprika chips at once with tartare sauce.’
    • ‘The other options on the two-for-a-fiver menu are haddock with chips and peas and Quorn chicken curry with rice.’
    • ‘There were a range of steaks to choose from, for example, and roast chicken, pork and lamb lunches, as well as hotpots and pies, all served with chips, potatoes or mash and vegetables.’
    • ‘Low-fat oven chips are both less hassle to cook and significantly lower in calories than conventional, deep-fried chips.’
    • ‘Usually I don't eat potato but fish without chips by the sea would be silly and my son eats most of them.’
    • ‘The village of Comrie boasts the last chip shop in the country to use animal fat to deep fry its chips.’
    • ‘The chicken was tender and nicely cooked and the creamy mash made a welcome change from new potatoes or chips.’
    • ‘I had the remainder of my kid's supper: old bits of fish finger, chips, and, later, half a panettone with tea.’
    • ‘Vegetables and potatoes or chips are included in the price.’
    • ‘The chips were from good potatoes, crisp on the outside.’
    • ‘Somebody a few cells down is smashing and trashing in a rage, furious that he has been given the grey sloppy Prison Regulation mashed potato rather than chips.’
    • ‘They ate cream of leek and potato soup, followed by fish, chips and mushy peas.’
    • ‘Floating on the top is a pear crisp, so sweet and delectable you might wonder why anyone ever bothered making chips from potatoes.’
    • ‘I now eat lots of fish, but not in batter, and of course I no longer eat things like potatoes, so chips are out.’
    chipped potatoes, potato chips, game chips
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    1. 2.1North American A potato crisp.
      • ‘The bowls are filled with chips; the hoagies are en route from the local sandwich joint.’
      • ‘So before you chow down on those chips, read the fine print: A single bag may be considered to be more than one serving.’
      • ‘Trans fats are in chips, French fries, and baked goods that contain margarine or shortening.’
      • ‘They all looked filling and sold for under $6 with a choice of chips or pretzels.’
      • ‘The side dishes were some cheddar cheese flavored chips and a fruit salad.’
      • ‘This doesn't mean going to the vending machine and munching on chips at 2: 30 in the afternoon.’
      • ‘Today for lunch were hoagie sandwiches, chips, and a Rice Krispy treat that looked kinda old.’
      • ‘Busy people will choose work over snacking if that bag of chips is going to take them away from the project at hand.’
      • ‘Emily smiled at Shannon and grabbed some chips out of the brown bag.’
      • ‘Beer cans were everywhere, along with crumbs of chips, leftover pizzas, and popcorn.’
      • ‘My fingers had bits of chips and candy attached to them.’
      • ‘Many foods, including chips, doughnuts, and fritters, are cooked this way.’
      • ‘Do not buy anything - candy, chips, doughnuts, Pop-Tarts, cookies or soda from a vending machine.’
      • ‘B. Moe's gives you chips with your burrito, so Chipotle loses points for charging for theirs.’
      • ‘She glanced over at Patrick and Danny, who were both eating chips from the refreshments table and not saying a word to each other.’
      • ‘Brian got a chicken and cheese sub, Lay's sour cream and onion chips, and a Mug Root Beer.’
      • ‘Which begs the question: Is it time to remove the salt shaker - or is it OK to nosh on salty chips with reckless abandon?’
      • ‘I walked down the long aisle ways of the supermarket looking for my favorite bag of chips… Ruffle's Sour Cream and Onion.’
      • ‘It happens with chips, candy, cereal, frozen foods, pickles, you name it.’
      • ‘After a hurried lunch of brown beans doused in tahini with salad and chips, we set off.’
  • 3

    short for microchip
    • ‘Graphics chips render images by breaking them into small pieces called polygons.’
    • ‘An implanted computer chip will read the patient's own heart activity, sensing when the natural muscle is tiring, then kick-in to help the heart.’
    • ‘An implantable, GPS-enabled chip is now becoming available.’
    • ‘That's when he inherited the CEO post and set out to remake the company around a new flagship product, the digital signal processor chip.’
    • ‘About every 18 months, the number of transistors in computer chips doubles.’
    • ‘The overclocking world was shaken when Winbond announced that it would discontinue its entire line of RAM chips.’
    • ‘Current integrated circuits, or computer chips, contain about 100 million transistors each.’
    • ‘Over the next 18 months every plastic card will be replaced by one that contains a new, smarter computer chip which will store details of your secret PIN.’
    • ‘You find semiconductors at the heart of microprocessor chips as well as transistors.’
    • ‘On some computers, the BIOS chip is not removable, and so it could only be replaced by swapping the entire motherboard.’
    • ‘You know, if I got a slightly larger memory chip, I could store it all on my phone…’
    • ‘Computer chips are integrated circuits called microprocessors built up from transistors and other components.’
    • ‘To shrink the size of transistors on computer chips, semiconductor manufacturers are turning to shorter wavelength techniques.’
    • ‘He bends down, picking up some type of computer chip.’
    • ‘Still, the test scores with both chips were repeatable, and the performance gain measured was that significant.’
    • ‘The new pricing brought the cost of Intel's notebook chips closer in line with its desktop products.’
    • ‘The paper describes the proper structure for a new kind of metal electrode to accompany novel insulating materials in transistors on computer chips.’
    • ‘The electron beam was magnetically aimed so as to encode the stream of data to be written, forming it into a sequence of dark and light spots on the chip.’
    • ‘Lower resistance means that transistors switch states faster and that makes chips compute quicker.’
    • ‘This speed is more than 100 times faster than that of the best security chip available at the beginning of last year, a phenomenal increase.’
  • 4A counter used in certain gambling games to represent money.

    ‘a poker chip’
    • ‘I thought maybe he'd taken a sudden interest in sewing but no - he intends to use them as gambling chips for poker games over at the other hotel.’
    • ‘The players also need a supply of money or chips for betting.’
    • ‘A poker player with lots of chips can force the game.’
    • ‘Life is a gamble, and I like playing ‘All-In’ (a poker term for gambling all your chips on one hand).’
    • ‘If he likes to play the old-fashioned way, T. Anthony's game set holds cards, dice, poker chips, checkers, and chess.’
    • ‘A drug dealer could convert his wads of notes into chips, put half on black and half on red then convert the chips back into clean money.’
    • ‘Money can be laundered through casinos by gamblers who buy chips, then cash them and provide a receipt to legitimise the proceeds.’
    • ‘Palace Poker can be played without money or chips also.’
    • ‘I did not look upon the chips as money; to me they were what they were - just pieces of plastic.’
    • ‘One night after the game I cashed in more in poker chips than I started with.’
    • ‘Poker chips are recommended, with the white chips representing 5 units, the reds 20, and the blues 1000.’
    • ‘Coins or small poker chips will serve as markers, and you can now buy little colored plastic train engines which look like the token from a Monopoly set.’
    • ‘Instead of copy watches and copy CDs, I will sell copy casino chips and copy poker machine coins.’
    • ‘The score can be recorded on paper or you can settle up in money or chips after each hand.’
    • ‘That was a mercenary term for a poker game with fake chips, one just played for relaxation.’
    • ‘Like poker chips, lasers may someday be molded out of plastic by the millions.’
    • ‘It was defined in terms of how much gold you could turn it in for, like redeeming chips for money at a casino.’
    • ‘Based on an oval track car race, this fairly simple game uses cards as a track and poker chips as race cars.’
    • ‘Scoring is best done with chips like many Chinese games.’
    • ‘They found it contained two bibles, a chess set, a backgammon game, a deck of cards, poker chips and several paper back pulp fiction novels.’
    counter, token, disc, jetton
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  • 5(in football, golf, and other sports) a short lofted kick or shot.

    ‘he made no mistake with a chip and a par putt from four feet to seal victory’
    • ‘More often than not you'll leave the next shot short with your chip or putt, and you'll probably be long with the next.’
    • ‘I've holed my share of chips and had quite a few near-misses.’
    • ‘I finally pulled it way left of the green, hit a bad chip and sank a 30-footer.’
    • ‘If a player gets too aggressive on a downhill putt on one of those greens, his next shot could be a chip or a pitch from the fairway.’
    • ‘If you do bail out right and short, you'll have an easy chip.’
    • ‘Similarly, York did not counter the fast-closing Park defence with the short chip kick.’
    • ‘In the drill shown here, I'm trying to hit chips short, long, left and right - but not to the pin itself.’
    • ‘Among other things, you should also hit some chips and definitely some bunker shots.’
    • ‘One touch took Giggs round the goalkeeper and a chip across the vacated goalmouth presented Ronaldo with the simplest of finishes.’
    • ‘But Tickle levelled the scores with a chip and chase to the line before Farrell's kick.’
    • ‘The ball's solid rubber core and extremely thin but strong urethane elastomer cover appear to add distance to tee shots and control to chips and putts.’
    • ‘So, while Woods is easily the best in the world from a tough situation - he's the most creative and has the most shots - he struggles to hit straightforward chips stiff to the hole.’
    • ‘Left with her second shot, her little chip barely reached the green.’
    • ‘We repeatedly are told to stop ‘quitting’ or decelerating at impact on our chips and putts.’
    • ‘All week I just warmed up by hitting a few chips and putts.’
    • ‘He hit a poor tee shot, required two chips to find the green and then two-putted from 10 feet.’
    • ‘A dropped shot loomed at the long 16th after another bad drive, but from just over the back of the green Clarke holed out for par, using one of his woods for the chip.’
    • ‘The most famous kick that Cantona ever delivered wasn't a sublime chip or a match-winning penalty, but a two-footed karate kick.’
    • ‘Angling my shoulders so they are parallel to the slope lets me hit uphill chips just like any other chip shot.’
    • ‘His chip kick was partially charged down, but the bounce took it in front of the posts only for desperate Waterloo cover to clear the danger.’


  • 1Cut or break (a small piece) from a hard material.

    ‘we had to chip ice off the upper deck’
    • ‘That afternoon I'd chipped my own pieces off the Wall.’
    • ‘He tried again with a harder swing and chipped off a small piece!’
    • ‘A small hand shovel was leaning against the dirt wall in front of him and Eron picked it up and began chipping away portions of the wall.’
    • ‘But the projectile went very deep, so it may have chipped the bone a bit.’
    • ‘The old neighborhood was falling apart, the paint was chipping off of the aging buildings and graffiti covered dumpsters, trash cans, benches, everything.’
    • ‘But day by day during those months, little Jamie chipped pieces of the sturdy shell that Serrah had made around herself.’
    • ‘That movement saved him, as another silenced gunshot rang out, chipping the hard concrete floor above him.’
    • ‘Huge damage has been done to the plaza and large pieces are being chipped out of the seats there.’
    • ‘Her head fell upon a wooden end table, chipping parts of it.’
    • ‘It fell on one's hair and froze there, creating a helmet of ice that had to be literally chipped away.’
    • ‘The unusual shape of the stone is in part the result of early visitors chipping pieces off to use as talismans or for curative purposes.’
    • ‘The surface of the rock was black from oxidation, and you could not always see the pink interior until you had chipped the piece with a rock hammer.’
    • ‘Her foot scuffed the pavement and chipped the side of a shallow pothole.’
    • ‘As he fell face-first his mouth smashed against the hard corner of the table, chipping a front tooth.’
    • ‘It was so cold in there sometimes that we could chip icicles off the inside of the window.’
    • ‘Luckily they showed that I hadn't cracked it or chipped it.’
    • ‘Just ask my dad and he'll willingly tell you how he had to chip an inch of ice off the windscreen before he could drive my mum to hospital.’
    • ‘Modern porcelain enamel can be chipped but only with a very hard blow that bends the base metal.’
    • ‘Haha… did I say something about the tall, lanky boy who chipped half his teeth roller blading that I seem to like too much?’
    • ‘A second test involves chipping small sections of concrete from the floor in several areas.’
    nick, crack, snick, scratch
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    1. 1.1[no object](of a material or object) break at the edge or on the surface.
      ‘the paint had chipped off the gate’
      • ‘In its first season, the league used red pucks, but the paint chipped off quickly.’
      • ‘Everywhere paint was chipping, wood was cracking, piles of putrid garbage were collecting, and laundry lines were being strung anywhere it was possible to do so.’
      • ‘Tables were overturned, the wood chipped off in jagged points with their legs snapped off and gnawed on.’
      • ‘Bollards look unsightly with their paints all chipped off.’
      • ‘It is strong but can be chipped or broken easily, especially cup handles.’
      • ‘I don't like it much and the polish is chipping so I think I'm going to go for a rust color.’
      • ‘They were brown and the polish was chipping slowly.’
      • ‘She saw a low ceiling with its paint chipped off - just like the ceiling of her house.’
      • ‘It was small, green paint chipping off everywhere.’
      • ‘Woks were rusty, cleaning equipment dirty, ceiling paint chipping and the food elevator was covered in blood and dried food.’
      • ‘It's carved, with paint chipping off and other paint coming through.’
      • ‘The third response is that large crystals have a higher probability of being chipped or broken while being collected.’
      • ‘The lock had the appearance of a half - rusted mailbox; the wall it belonged to also owned a door with most of the paint chipped off.’
      • ‘There were gouges in the stock and the paint had chipped off the selector switch.’
      crack, fragment, crumble
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    2. 1.2Cut pieces off (a hard material) to shape it or break it up.
      ‘craftsmen chipped the blocks of flint to the required shape’
      [no object] ‘she chipped away at the ground outside the door’
      • ‘He reached for a piece and just a hair too close to his fingers for comfort a knife chipped wood.’
      • ‘Now it's lying on the beach and he's chipped away the mud and shells to reveal an iron canon.’
      • ‘He was chipping away pieces of a large rock, slowly hollowing it out.’
      • ‘But we can always chip ice out of the north pole cap, that's a billion cubic kilometres of water ice just sitting there waiting to be dealt with.’
      • ‘Into this add 125g crushed amaretti biscuits with 125g chipped hazelnuts.’
      • ‘In the U.S. eradication program, infested trees are also chipped into tiny pieces after they are taken down.’
      • ‘It took three or four weekends to chip enough stone for one weekend's block laying.’
      • ‘As he chipped the stone away, Michael realized it was a cylindrical object, tapering gradually to a point at each end, made entirely of the odd, silvery metal.’
      • ‘He turns a chunk of wood over in his hands, mulling how he could cut it, sand it, chip it, glue it into something.’
      • ‘Once the trees have been chipped, the material is collected to be used at the Wigan Road centre for landscaping.’
      • ‘For a lot of them, we had to chip the ice away from their feet to get them off the belt until we could get those birds run.’
      • ‘Now, however, there's no shortage of wood chipping machines.’
      • ‘Once cooled, the outer clay is chipped away and the carbonized core reamed out, with the casting filed and chased.’
      • ‘I decide to work on the first option - chipping the rock away.’
      • ‘He said for a night and a day the ice was chipped away revealing 54 bags of hashish ranging in weight from 50 to 100 pounds.’
      • ‘The ‘bio-mass’ or wood is then chipped, dried and stored in the same way as grain.’
      • ‘Timber will be chipped, and papers and cardboards will be baled.’
      • ‘He soon came upon a small clearing where he found some saplings; he broke one off and found some rocks which he used to chip another rock into a point.’
      • ‘This would be repeated until the rock was chipped down to the approximate size and shape of one of the few dozen letters in the flatumm alphabet.’
      • ‘There was something about the beauty and simplicity of it that could chip the ice around a person's cold heart.’
      whittle, hew, chisel
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  • 2British Cut (a potato) into chips.

    • ‘When this happens, put first chipped potato in carefully so it doesn't splash.’
    • ‘Mashed, boiled, baked, chipped or roasted whichever way you like, it will be there at a Potato Day taking place at the Friends Meeting House in Meeting House Lane next month.’
    • ‘Potatoes, whether served mashed, boiled or chipped, flowery or waxy, are integral parts of Irish diet and culture.’
    • ‘Soft flavoursome potato dominated the centre of these chipped potatoes, which were marginally fatter than standard French Fries.’
    • ‘When served with Irish chipped potatoes and a perky burst of baby organic spinach, there are few finer Irish meals.’
    • ‘The side dishes of optional vegetables and chipped and roast potatoes filled the table up nicely.’
    • ‘Soak raw chipped potatoes in a pint of hot stock, drain them and oven roast for scrumptious, tasty chips.’
    • ‘Most of these are served with potatoes, either mashed, chipped or sautéed.’
  • 3(in football, golf, and other sports) kick or strike (a ball or shot) to produce a short lofted shot or pass.

    ‘he chipped a superb shot over the keeper’
    • ‘Beckham adroitly chips a dangerous ball into the box - who does he think he is, Zidane?’
    • ‘His shot arrived at the feet of Kerins, who skilfully chipped the ball over the stranded goalkeeper and into the net.’
    • ‘Players chip the ball around rather than kicking long to packs so there are fewer marking contests involving more than two players.’
    • ‘At one point in the game, Franco Baresi chipped the ball out to the left where Paolo Maldini was waiting on the touchline.’
    • ‘Many 90s-shooters try to chip the ball from a snarled lie just off the green.’
    • ‘He dummies Beye and has so much time and space to play with, it's inevitable he chips the ball lamely into the grateful hands of Runje.’
    • ‘At the far end, Kanu shimmies outside the box, makes room for a shot and tries to chip the ball into the top left-hand corner.’
    • ‘Though Sullivan, timing his run from the wing to perfection, appeared to have chipped the ball over Shelley, a superb late tackle thwarted him.’
    • ‘He plays half the second hole one-handed, chipping the ball along the fairway with his right hand while cradling the phone to his ear with his left.’
    • ‘O'Connor chipped the ball into the penalty area where Martin Reilly headed home from six yards.’
    • ‘Thomas Hunt was in the right place at the right time and chipped a right-footed shot from the edge of the penalty area into an empty net.’
    • ‘Faced with a stymie in the afternoon round, Runyan casually chipped his ball over Snead's and into the cup for another winner.’
    • ‘But they played as if it was a fine day - chipping the ball around, setting things up.’
    • ‘He chipped his third shot through the green and watched as his fourth dribbled back to his feet before avoiding a double bogey by chipping in from 35 feet.’
    • ‘I often see amateurs try to chip the ball and just chunk it, leaving it in the rough.’
    • ‘The president was in the small putting green outside the Oval Office chipping golf balls and whining - he did this a lot - to his aides.’
    • ‘Try to chip the ball so it lands on the towel and rolls to the hole.’
    • ‘He chips the ball over Given and it bounces clear of both a backtracking Finnan and the empty net.’
    • ‘One thing every golfer can appreciate is a player who can chip the ball well.’
    • ‘Larsson chips the ball across the face of the Anderlecht goal.’


  • a chip off the old block

    • informal Someone who resembles their parent in character or appearance.

      ‘she smiled at Jimmy, a chip off the old block with his grey eyes and a bit of his dad's twinkle’
      • ‘She was also developing an expensive, hedonistic lifestyle, proving she was a chip off the old block, and she graduated into a notorious celebrity.’
      • ‘Martin is literally a chip off the old block and carries on the family tradition not just by chops but also by manufacturing top quality racing axes.’
      • ‘He might even turn out to be a chip off the old block.’
      • ‘So, like a chip off the old block, I felt compelled to keep telling the story until someone graced me with a response.’
      • ‘Is his son a chip off the old block in interest in international affairs?’
      • ‘Scott had taken Sean's promotion at the law firm, and Mr. Sinclair had no doubt in his mind that Brandon was a chip off the old block.’
      • ‘Renowned as a playboy who has dated a string of Indonesian starlets, Tommy is, as the saying goes, a chip off the old block.’
      • ‘And five years after that reunion, there is no doubt now that Ford is very much a chip off the old block.’
      • ‘He claims his inheritance, transforms his arid lands into a lush and prosperous farm through an irrigation scheme, and is generally seen as a chip off the old block.’
      • ‘King Abdullah is a chip off the old block, really.’
      • ‘I didn't know she had it in her… but perhaps she's more of a chip off the old block than I gave her credit for.’
      • ‘He certainly is a chip off the old block - he not only bears a striking resemblance to his father but also moves very much like him.’
      • ‘Somebody looked at me, then at my father and decided, ‘He's a chip off the old block.’’
      • ‘Glen, of Lowther Crescent, Leyland, said it all happened so quickly, but is thrilled for Sam who is clearly a chip off the old block.’
      • ‘But the fly-half is a chip off the old block when it comes to meticulous planning and almost disturbing dedication to duty.’
      • ‘Daniel '71, Ph.D. '78 (early Islamic history), is what old-timers would call a chip off the old block.’
      • ‘Yes, perhaps Ferry is a chip off the old block after all.’
      • ‘And he's a brick, a chip off the old block, a good ‘un.’
      • ‘Son has worked with father since his teens and, by all accounts, is definitely a chip off the old block for, like his dad, Chris is ‘a practical guy’.’
      • ‘If young Les proves to be a chip off the old block, then Workers are, indeed, in good hands.’
  • a chip on one's shoulder

    • informal An ingrained feeling of resentment deriving from a sense of inferiority and sometimes marked by aggressive behaviour.

      ‘I had a dirty great chip on my shoulder—I thought everybody was against me’
      • ‘I suppose you could grow up with a chip on your shoulder.’
      • ‘But if you complain too much you have got a chip on your shoulder.’
      • ‘To have a chip on your shoulder against authority is immature.’
      • ‘‘I tried to take lads who had a bit of a chip on their shoulder,’ he said.’
      • ‘I think you have a chip on your shoulder about private education.’
      • ‘Now, if you're a child of parents being snubbed, I think it's perfectly natural to develop a chip on your shoulder.’
      • ‘I have a chip on my shoulder because I think it is uncalled for that I get dog's abuse in every game, year after year.’
      • ‘‘Football is such a violent game, a player really needs to have a chip on their shoulder to succeed,’ he says.’
      • ‘Le petit merde, also known as Douglas Alexander, has insisted he's going to support England and that anybody who doesn't has got a chip on their shoulder.’
      • ‘‘I suppose I did have a little bit of a chip on my shoulder,’ he said.’
      • ‘Savage, like many people who are motivated by hatred, has a chip on his shoulder as a failed academic rejected by liberal Berkeley.’
      • ‘I had a chip on my shoulder about the chips on other people's shoulders, and as so often with shoulder chips, the chips I perceived in others were often imagined or exaggerated.’
      • ‘This family obviously has a chip on their shoulder and another thought should not be wasted on this.’
      • ‘The reason some crime writers have a chip on their shoulder about the label is because their good books are shelved beside books about nuns and birdwatchers and cats who solve crimes.’
      • ‘Still, he found himself plunged right into the middle of the notoriously divided jazz world, where every camp views others with suspicion, and everyone seems to have a chip on their shoulder.’
      • ‘But having to break into America certainly is annoying, and it is sort of something I've got a chip on my shoulder about.’
      • ‘Maybe I have a chip on my shoulder about John's skill as a wordsmith.’
      • ‘I WOULD be a liar if I said I didn't have a chip on my shoulder about Italian restaurants.’
      • ‘‘You can't go around with a chip on your shoulder, blaming the world for your problems,’ he says of the rioters.’
      • ‘If you've got a chip on your shoulder about men and you take that with you to your next relationship, then he's dead in the water before he ever starts.’
      bitterness, indignation, irritation, pique, displeasure, dissatisfaction, disgruntlement, discontentment, discontent, resentfulness, bad feelings, hard feelings, ill feelings, acrimony, rancour, animosity, hostility, jaundice, antipathy, antagonism, enmity, hatred, hate
      View synonyms
  • have had one's chips

    • informal Be dead or defeated.

      ‘Granny has had her chips—she's dead’
      • ‘None of the execs had time to meet me today so I've been granted a look around the factory and then I'll have had my chips.’
      • ‘A South African gambling company launched a cellphone advertising campaign showing the Last Supper and the slogan ‘Jesus has had his chips.’’
      • ‘Now, when it comes to the crunch, my friend has had his chips.’
      • ‘Scotland's junk food-loving schoolchildren have had their chips.’
      • ‘We were up against it - we expected an invasion at any time and a lot of people were convinced we had had our chips.’
      • ‘After the second set, it looked as though Agassi had had his chips.’
  • when the chips are down

    • informal When a very serious situation arises.

      ‘when the chips are down they chicken out’
      • ‘But in actual fact when the chips are down and the global operations centre cannot diagnose what's wrong with a particular service, it falls back on people in the field.’
      • ‘CAN A person trust others for support when the chips are down?’
      • ‘It's a great place to play when the chips are down.’
      • ‘If, however, you do not see eye-to-eye with your investors then their rights - particularly when the chips are down - can become a restriction on the development of your business.’
      • ‘I think it is the job of supporters to encourage as much as possible, even when the chips are down, and if expectations have not been met by the final whistle then fans should vent their frustration.’
      • ‘In crunch time, to use another sports analogy, when the chips are down, those of us who cover sports do tend to let our fandom show, and this is despite the jaded nature of the average sports reporter.’
      • ‘What has happened to and because of the Tampa, the arrogant misbehaving in the face of the rule of law, is something that, when the chips are down, could happen to every one of us here.’
      • ‘He also needs to show that, notwithstanding his mostly-superficial second term problems, he can get what he wants from the Senate when the chips are down.’
      • ‘And that in itself is another cause for satisfaction, another sign of a ‘team’ unified in its aim; when the chips are down and things aren't going their way they roll up their sleeves and dig in.’
      • ‘It is like a family, and when the chips are down, everybody is there and just sort of mucks in,’ she says.’
      • ‘But when the chips are down, Douglas has no doubt that things will be different, citing the controlled aggression displayed last year as evidence.’
      • ‘A truly mean player won't hesitate to play dirty when the chips are down.’
      • ‘Joe's Zimbabwe post talked about a number of things, but I want to draw on my experience and focus on one thing: what makes people act when the chips are down?’
      • ‘But when the chips are down (despite some pretty unlikely situations), their determination shines through.’
      • ‘The team that used to put away inferior teams with such professional élan in the past is starting too look a little lacklustre when the chips are down.’
      • ‘I learnt a lot about people and dignity when the chips are down and this started my interest in helping people plan their careers and achieve a measure of survivability.’
      • ‘But the fact is that, when the chips are down, most people haven't the courage or have too much to lose to confront the boss - whatever the situation.’
      • ‘This is a dreamy, imaginative and sensitive sign, but underneath is a steely strength that can be relied upon when the chips are down; hence the rapid recovery when the band hit trouble.’
      • ‘But the crisis has shown us how amazing people can be when the chips are down.’
      • ‘‘I think it's really important when the chips are down to support your home team,’ she said.’

Phrasal Verbs

  • chip away at

    • Gradually and relentlessly make something smaller or weaker.

      ‘rivals may chip away at one's profits by undercutting prices’
      • ‘Now, many fear we are chipping away at what it means to be an American, devaluing the citizenship those millions worked so hard to attain.’
      • ‘Ron, is this something the president can chip away at and make progress on between now and November?’
      • ‘Those are the people they're chipping away at now.’
      • ‘What is also very difficult to identify are the areas where Freedom of Expression is chipped away at by stealth where misguided good intentions or simple greed is the cause.’
      • ‘But loyalty is something that takes a lot of time to chip away at and it also takes a lot of time to replace.’
      • ‘Of course, his persona was one of golden husband and do-gooder WASP, something he's clearly revelling in chipping away at here.’
      • ‘Raquel still stood stiffly, but the passion in his voice was gradually chipping away at her suspicions.’
      • ‘The Justice Department has already chipped away at more than 20 years of privacy standards by arresting AIDS and cancer patients who use medical marijuana.’
      • ‘The vision that you have at the beginning is just constantly chipped away at, and you haven't even filmed anything.’
      • ‘It will take some chipping away at, one dimension at a time.’
      • ‘The smaller beasties can be easily killed off with any assortment of weaponry but the larger enemies must first be chipped away at with artillery or grenades, and doused with fire in order to be killed.’
      • ‘It would only serve to enrage Dvorak even more as it's exactly these new ‘columnists’ who are chipping away at his crumbling throne.’
      • ‘A premium brand has been chipped away at by serious price competition and an ever-increasing level of quality on the part of cheaper competitors.’
      • ‘It's hundreds of illnesses that you have to go and chip away at.’
      • ‘Academic challenges chipped away at what was left of Parr's self-confidence.’
      • ‘‘I find it very depressing that we have a vision for the town centre and they chip away at it and erode the vision,’ said Coun Allen.’
      • ‘They like to wrap themselves in the American flag and yet they're totally chipping away at what it stands for.’
      • ‘A similar pathway system is envisioned in the East Village, but some argue the project's plans have already chipped away at what makes Eau Claire so successful.’
      • ‘But over the match, Tranfield gradually chipped away at Nimmo's confidence and forced her to play long rallies.’
      • ‘You also have people chipping away at that, continually.’
      wear away, wear down, abrade, scrape away, grind down, crumble, dissolve, weather
      View synonyms
  • chip in (or chip something in)

    • 1Contribute something as one's share of a joint activity, cost, etc.

      ‘Rollie chipped in with nine saves and five wins’
      ‘the council will chip in a further £30,000 a year’
      • ‘We have thought of a few options like borrowing a barn on a farm and doing it all up and looking at everyone else chipping in.’
      • ‘And finally, the celebrated tv personality Melvyn Bragg chips in with this.’
      • ‘Although the money from the Government is not a substantial amount, if everyone chips in the total can add up very nicely.’
      • ‘Old songwriting hand Tom Morgan chips in, so does Ben Lee with two beauties, and Jellyfish's Jon Brion not only co-produces but co-writes five tracks.’
      • ‘Do it now and don't forget to fill out a gift aid declaration so that Uncle Gordon Brown chips in and increases your donation by 28%.’
      • ‘If he keeps popping up in the box, he could end up being a midfield player who chips in with double figures - maybe not this year, but in future years.’
      • ‘‘Too often we win games through an individual performance and to be a complete side capable of winning next year's World Cup we need to get everyone chipping in,’ he said.’
      • ‘He scored 18 goals in Greece last season so I expect him to be chipping in when he gets in the swing.’
      • ‘Enough revenue was chipped in, so to speak, to allow him to open a new restaurant on Second Avenue, where the food wasn't as sublime as its inspiration but was far more affordable.’
      • ‘For AAM, Paddy Conlon replied with a hat-trick, but with Bruce Rowan, Ryan Cathro, Gordon Shepherd and Dailly again chipping in after half time, Wanderers made it look comfortable.’
      • ‘It's good that all our strikers are scoring and, with the other players chipping in too, we're always going to be a goal-scoring threat.’
      contribute, donate, give, make a contribution, make a donation, hand over, pay
      View synonyms
    • 2Make an interjection.

      [with direct speech] ‘‘He's right,’ Gloria chipped in’
      • ‘But that didn't stop Gilz chipping in with the now days old argument, ‘If you go to a farm there's milk and cheese.’’
      • ‘That thought seems to have occurred to his daughter as well: ‘I wouldn't enjoy playing the game that I love for money,’ she chips in.’
      • ‘Fellow dancer Dave Brisk chips in, ‘It's also a great opportunity to meet new people and make some new friends.’’
      • ‘‘And not when she's got this very tough-looking girlfriend hovering in the background,’ Ryan chips in.’
      • ‘‘How you feature in it, and the respect they (the artist) have for you,’ Lotta chips in.’
      • ‘His pal, a farmer's son, chips in, ‘Not as serious now, though, is it?’’
      • ‘‘Well, if we're using a fender amp we should really use a fender cab ’, Andy chips in.’
      • ‘‘And the only thing that me and Kenny know is music so we just did that and created this huge bouncing building,’ Woody chips in.’
      • ‘Geoff chips in: ‘By the eighth day we had almost given up hope and would have settled for just a phone call to let us know she was safe and being well cared for.’’
      interrupt, cut in, chime in, break in, interject, interpose, butt in
      View synonyms


Middle English: related to Old English forcippian ‘cut off’.