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chain - definition and synonyms


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noun chain pronunciation in British English /tʃeɪn/
Word Forms
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  1. 1
    [countable/uncountable] a series of metal rings connected to each other, used for fastening, pulling, or lifting things
    There was a rusty iron chain hanging from the gate.
    The crate was secured with a strong chain.
    1. a.
      [countable] a series of small metal rings connected to each other that is worn as a decoration
      She wore a delicate gold chain around her neck.
    2. c.
      [countable] [usually plural] a long series of heavy metal rings fastened like a rope to a prisoners arms and legs
      in chains: Women prisoners were kept in chains during childbirth.
  2. 2
    [countable] a series of things of the same type that form a connected line
    chain of: In 1910 there was a proposal for a chain of telegraph stations to link up the empire.
    The region includes Sumatra, Java, and a chain of smaller islands extending eastwards.
    1. a.
      a group of people that form a line
      human chain (=a line of people): Firefighters formed a human chain to carry the injured climbers to safety.
  3. 3
    [countable] a long series of events, facts, or ideas that are all related to each other
    chain of: a chain of events that eventually led to murder
    The virus becomes weaker as it passes down the chain of infection.
  4. 4
    [countable] a group of businesses such as shops, hotels, or restaurants that all belong to the same person or company
    Japan’s leading hotel chain
    chain of: a chain of electrical goods shops


a meal served in the evening which consists of foods traditionally eaten at breakfast

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