- Inflections of 'chance' (v): (⇒ conjugate)
- v 3rd person singular
- v pres pverb, present participle: -ing verb used descriptively or to form progressive verb--for example, "a singing bird," "It is singing."
- v pastverb, past simple: Past tense--for example, "He saw the man." "She laughed."
- v past pverb, past participle: Verb form used descriptively or to form verbs--for example, "the locked door," "The door has been locked."
WordReference Random House Learner's Dictionary of American English © 2020
chance /tʃæns/USA pronunciation
n., v., chanced, chanc•ing, adj. n.
WordReference Random House Unabridged Dictionary of American English © 2020
- the part of an event that seems unpredictable;
luck or fortune:[uncountable]Chance seems to have a lot to do with getting a job these days.
- a possibility or probability of anything happening;
likelihood: [countable]Your chances of success improve the harder you work.[uncountable]not much chance of his changing his mind.
- chances, [plural] probability: The chances are that the train hasn't left yet.
- an opportunity:[countable]Now is your chance.
- [countable] a risk or hazard: He took an awfully big chance investing all that money.
- a ticket in a lottery or prize drawing:[countable]I bought five chances for a dollar each.
adj. [before a noun]
- [It + ~ + (that) clause] to happen accidentally or in an unplanned way: It chanced that our arrivals coincided.
- to do something accidentally:[~ + to + verb]I chanced to overhear their conversations.
- [~ + object; often: ~ + it] to take the chances or risks of;
risk: I'll have to chance it, whatever the outcome.
- chance on or upon, [ ~ + on/upon + obj] to meet unexpectedly and accidentally:I chanced upon her at the party last night.
- not planned or expected;
accidental: a chance occurrence.
- by any chance, possibly:Do you think that by any chance you'd be free for dinner?
- Idiomsby chance, unintentionally;
accidentally:I met her by chance.
- Idiomson the (off ) chance, counting on the (slight) possibility:On the off chance that the painters are finished by tonight, you can sand the floors tomorrow.
(chans, chäns),USA pronunciation n., v., chanced, chanc•ing, adj. n.
- the absence of any cause of events that can be predicted, understood, or controlled: often personified or treated as a positive agency:Chance governs all.
- luck or fortune:a game of chance.
- a possibility or probability of anything happening:a fifty-percent chance of success.
- an opportune or favorable time;
opportunity:Now is your chance.
- Sport[Baseball.]an opportunity to field the ball and make a put-out or assist.
- a risk or hazard:Take a chance.
- a share or ticket in a lottery or prize drawing:The charity is selling chances for a dollar each.
- chances, probability:The chances are that the train hasn't left yet.
- Dialect Terms[Midland and Southern U.S.]a quantity or number (usually fol. by of ).
- [Archaic.]an unfortunate event;
- Idiomsby chance, without plan or intent;
accidentally:I met her again by chance in a department store in Paris.
- Idiomson the chance, in the mild hope or against the possibility:I'll wait on the chance that she'll come.
- Idiomson the off chance, in the very slight hope or against the very slight possibility.
- to happen or occur by chance:It chanced that our arrivals coincided.
- to take the chances or risks of;
risk (often fol. by impersonal it):I'll have to chance it, whatever the outcome.
- chance on or upon, to come upon by chance;
meet unexpectedly:She chanced on a rare kind of mushroom during her walk through the woods.
- not planned or expected;
accidental:a chance occurrence.
- Vulgar Latin *cadentia a befalling, happening; see cadenza
- Old French chance, cheance
- Middle English 1250–1300
- 2.See corresponding entry in Unabridged accident, fortuity.
- 3.See corresponding entry in Unabridged contingency.
- 4.See corresponding entry in Unabridged opening.
- 14.See corresponding entry in Unabridged befall. See happen.
- 17.See corresponding entry in Unabridged casual, fortuitous.
- 1.See corresponding entry in Unabridged necessity.
Collins Concise English Dictionary © HarperCollins Publishers::
chance /tʃɑːns/ n
- the unknown and unpredictable element that causes an event to result in a certain way rather than another, spoken of as a real force
- (as modifier): a chance meeting
Related adjective(s): fortuitous
- fortune; luck; fate
- an opportunity or occasion
- a risk; gamble
- the extent to which an event is likely to occur; probability
- an unpredicted event, esp a fortunate one
- by chance ⇒ accidentally: he slipped by chance
- on the chance ⇒ acting on the possibility; in case
Etymology: 13th Century: from Old French cheance, from cheoir to fall, occur, from Latin cadereˈchanceful adj
- (transitive) to risk; hazard
- to happen by chance; be the case by chance: I chanced to catch sight of her as she passed
- chance on, chance upon ⇒ to come upon by accident
- chance one's arm ⇒ to attempt to do something although the chance of success may be slight
'chance' also found in these entries: