Meaning of CHANCE in English


/ tʃɑːns; NAmE tʃæns/ noun , verb , adjective

■ noun


[ C , U ] chance of doing sth | chance that ... | chance of sth happening | chance of sth a possibility of sth happening, especially sth that you want :

Is there any chance of getting tickets for tonight?

She has only a slim chance of passing the exam.

There's a slight chance that he'll be back in time.

There is no chance that he will change his mind.

What chance is there of anybody being found alive?

Nowadays a premature baby has a very good chance of survival.

The operation has a fifty-fifty chance of success.

The chances are a million to one against being struck by lightning.

an outside chance (= a very small one)


[ C ] chance (of sth) | chance (to do sth) | chance (for sb to do sth) a suitable time or situation when you have the opportunity to do sth :

We won't get another chance of a holiday this year.

Please give me a chance to explain.

It was the chance she had been waiting for.

There will be a chance for parents to look around the school.

Jeff deceived me once already—I won't give him a second chance .

This is your big chance (= opportunity for success) .

Tonight is your last chance to catch the play at your local theatre.


[ C ] an unpleasant or dangerous possibility :

When installing electrical equipment don't take any chances . A mistake could kill.


[ U ] the way that some things happen without any cause that you can see or understand :

I met her by chance (= without planning to) at the airport.

Chess is not a game of chance .

It was pure chance that we were both there.

We'll plan everything very carefully and leave nothing to chance .

➡ note at luck


- as chance would have it

- be in with a chance (of doing sth)

- by any chance

- the chances are (that) ...

- chance would be a fine thing

- give sb/sth half a chance

- no chance

- on the off chance (that)

- stand a chance (of doing sth)

- take a chance (on sth)

- take your chances

—more at cat , dog noun , even adjective , eye noun , fat adjective , fight verb , snowball noun , sporting

■ verb


( informal ) to risk sth, although you know the result may not be successful :

[ vn ]

She was chancing her luck driving without a licence.

'Take an umbrella.' 'No, I'll chance it ' (= take the risk that it may rain) .

[ v -ing ]

I stayed hidden; I couldn't chance coming out.


( formal ) to happen or to do sth by chance :

[ v to inf ]

If I do chance to find out where she is, I'll inform you immediately.

They chanced to be staying at the same hotel.

[ v ( that )]

It chanced (that) they were staying at the same hotel.


- chance your arm


- chance on / upon sb/sth

■ adjective

[ only before noun ] not planned

SYN unplanned :

a chance meeting / encounter



Middle English : from Old French cheance , from cheoir fall, befall, based on Latin cadere .

Oxford Advanced Learner's English Dictionary.      Оксфордский английский словарь для изучающик язык на продвинутом уровне.