Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun The backbone or spine, especially of an animal.
  • noun A cut of meat containing part of the backbone.
  • noun A ridge or crest.
  • noun Nautical The line of intersection between the side and bottom of a flatbottom or V-bottom boat.
  • transitive verb To cut (a carcass, for example) through the spine, as when butchering.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun The backbone or spine: now commonly used only of an animal.
  • noun A piece of the backbone of an animal, with the adjoining parts, cut for cooking.
  • noun Figuratively, a ridge of land.
  • Literally, colored in Chinese fashion: applied to fabrics in which the warp is dyed in different colors, so that a mottled effect is produced, or in which a double thread, formed of two smaller threads of different colors twisted together, is used to produce a similar mottled or speckled appearance.
  • To split open; crack; chink; chap.
  • To split; crack; burst; lay open.
  • To cut through the backbone or into chine-pieces.
  • noun A crack; chink; rift; cleft; crevice; fissure.
  • noun A ravine or large fissure in a cliff: a term especially common in the Isle of Wight and Hampshire, England: as, Black-gang chine.
  • noun An erroneous form for chime (of a cask).
  • noun A part of a ship. See chime, 2.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • transitive verb To cut through the backbone of; to cut into chine pieces.
  • transitive verb Too chamfer the ends of a stave and form the chine..
  • noun Prov. Eng. A chink or cleft; a narrow and deep ravine.
  • noun The backbone or spine of an animal; the back.
  • noun A piece of the backbone of an animal, with the adjoining parts, cut for cooking. [See Illust. of Beef.]
  • noun The edge or rim of a cask, etc., formed by the projecting ends of the staves; the chamfered end of a stave.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun Southern England a steep-sided ravine leading from the top of a cliff down to the sea
  • noun The top of a ridge.
  • noun The spine of an animal.
  • noun nautical a sharp angle in the cross section of a hull
  • verb transitive To cut through the backbone of; to cut into chine pieces.
  • verb To chamfer the ends of a stave and form the chine.

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

  • noun backbone of an animal
  • noun cut of meat or fish including at least part of the backbone
  • verb cut through the backbone of an animal

Etymologies

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

[Middle English, from Old French eschine, of Germanic origin; see skei- in Indo-European roots.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

Middle English chin ("crack, fissure, chasm"), from Old English cine, cinu

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Middle English chyne, from Middle French eschine.

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Examples

  • The two loins together are called the chine or saddle.

    Directions for Cookery, in its Various Branches Eliza Leslie 1822

  • A chine is a deep crevace (how the hell do you spell that?) caused by running water, there are many of them along this part of the coast.

    SF0 2009

  • When the boat is at rest, wakes from passing boats slap against the chines and makes a noise called chine gurgle.

    Maggie's Farm 2008

  • When the boat is at rest, wakes from passing boats slap against the chines and makes a noise called chine gurgle.

    Maggie's Farm 2008

  • You ask if I mind wearing that beautiful crepe de chine which is not becoming to you?

    The Lady of the Decoration Little, Frances, 1863-1941 1906

  • You ask if I mind wearing that beautiful crêpe de chine which is not becoming to you?

    The Lady of the Decoration Frances Little 1902

  • Zwear scarves are Deborah Zwetsch's original art, handpainted on silk crepe de chine which is stretched on a frame.

    TREND HUNTER - The Latest Trends 2010

  • Zwear scarves are Deborah Zwetsch's original art, handpainted on silk crepe de chine which is stretched on a frame.

    TREND HUNTER - The Latest Trends 2010

  • (thus running out into the sea in steep promontories) occurs -- what they would call a 'chine' in the Isle of Wight; but instead of the soft south wind stealing up the woody ravine, as it does there, the eastern breeze comes piping shrill and clear along these northern chasms, keeping the trees that venture to grow on the sides down to the mere height of scrubby brushwood.

    Sylvia's Lovers — Volume 1 Elizabeth Cleghorn Gaskell 1837

  • (thus running out into the sea in steep promontories) occurs -- what they would call a 'chine' in the Isle of Wight; but instead of the soft south wind stealing up the woody ravine, as it does there, the eastern breeze comes piping shrill and clear along these northern chasms, keeping the trees that venture to grow on the sides down to the mere height of scrubby brushwood.

    Sylvia's Lovers — Complete Elizabeth Cleghorn Gaskell 1837

Comments

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  • The intersection of the middle and sides of a boat.

    February 15, 2008

  • Also a valley-like geological formation

    June 17, 2008

  • Pause for laughter.

    Q. What's the difference between an asthmatic pork-butcher and a party given by intellectuals?

    A. One's all chine and wheeze, and the other's all wine and cheese.

    Witch Grass by Raymond Queneau, translated by Barbara Wright, p 174 of the NYRB paperback

    November 7, 2010

  • I'd be fascinated to see what that's translated from.

    November 7, 2010

  • I have only ever seen this word in a modern cookbook featuring medieval recipes, that says "Ask your butcher to chine the joint." "WTF," I thought—first off it's assuming I even have a butcher—and didn't do anything of the kind.

    Recipes are more like guidelines anyway.

    November 9, 2010

  • The barbering tar would opine,

    “The hardest to shave’s the jawline.

    The prow of the chin

    Is easy as sin

    But not the damned barnacled chine.”

    January 3, 2019

  • Coquitlam BC has a neighbourhood called Harbour Chines

    January 3, 2019