from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A board game for two players, each beginning with 16 pieces of six kinds that are moved according to individual rules, with the objective of checkmating the opposing king.
  • n. Any of several species of brome grass, especially the cheat.
  • n. One of the floorboards of a pontoon bridge.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A board game for two players with each beginning with sixteen chess pieces moving according to fixed rules across a chessboard with the objective to checkmate the opposing king.
  • n. A type of grass, generally considered a weed.
  • n. One of the platforms, consisting of two or more planks dowelled together, for the flooring of a temporary military bridge.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A game played on a chessboard, by two persons, with two differently colored sets of men, sixteen in each set. Each player has a king, a queen, two bishops, two knights, two castles or rooks, and eight pawns.
  • n. A species of brome grass (Bromus secalinus) which is a troublesome weed in wheat fields, and is often erroneously regarded as degenerate or changed wheat; it bears a very slight resemblance to oats, and if reaped and ground up with wheat, so as to be used for food, is said to produce narcotic effects; -- called also cheat and Willard's bromus.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A very ancient game played by two persons or parties with thirty-two pieces on a checkered board divided into sixty-four squares.
  • n. The common name in the United States of several species of Bromus, especially B. secalinus, which bears some resemblance to oats, and is frequently more or less abundant as a weed in wheat-fields. Also called cheat.
  • n. One of the planks forming the roadway of a military bridge.
  • n. An obsolete variant of chase.
  • n. Obsolete form jess.
  • n. Dice.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. weedy annual native to Europe but widely distributed as a weed especially in wheat
  • n. a board game for two players who move their 16 pieces according to specific rules; the object is to checkmate the opponent's king


Middle English ches, short for Old French esches, pl. of eschec, check in chess; see check.
Origin unknown.
Middle English ches, tier, perhaps from Old French chasse, frame, from Latin capsa, box.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Old French eschés, plural of eschec, from Vulgar Latin *scaccus, from Arabic شاه (šāh, "king in chess"), from Persian شاه (šāh, "shah, king"), from Middle Persian 𐭱𐭠𐭤 (šāh), from Old Persian 𐏋 (xšāyaθiya). (Wiktionary)
Origin uncertain; perhaps linked to Etymology 1, above, from the sense of being arranged in rows or lines. (Wiktionary)
Compare French chassis ("a framework of carpentry"). (Wiktionary)


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