chip away


Also found in: Thesaurus, Medical, Legal, Idioms, Encyclopedia.

chip 1

(chĭp)
n.
1. A small broken or cut off piece, as of wood, stone, or glass.
2. A crack or flaw caused by the removal of a small piece.
3.
a. A small disk or counter used in poker and other games to represent money.
b. chips Slang Money.
4. See microchip.
5.
a. A thin, usually fried slice of food, especially a potato chip: ate chips with her sandwich.
b. A very small piece of food or candy: made cookies with chocolate chips.
c. chips Chiefly British French fries.
6. Wood, palm leaves, straw, or similar material cut and dried for weaving.
7. A fragment of dried animal dung used as fuel.
8. Something worthless.
9. Sports A chip shot.
v. chipped, chip·ping, chips
v. tr.
1. To chop or cut with an axe or other implement.
2.
a. To break a small piece from: chip a tooth.
b. To break or cut off (a small piece): chip ice from the window.
3. To shape or carve by cutting or chopping: chipped her name in the stone.
4. To implant a microchip in (an organism).
v. intr.
1. To become broken off into small pieces.
2. Sports To make a chip shot in golf.
Phrasal Verbs:
chip away
To reduce or make progress on something incrementally: We chipped away until the problem was solved.
chip in
1. To contribute money or labor: We all chipped in for beer.
2. To interrupt with comments; interject.
3. To put up chips or money as one's bet in poker and other games.
Idioms:
chip off the old block
A child whose appearance or character closely resembles that of one or the other parent.
chip on (one's) shoulder
A habitually hostile or combative attitude, especially in response to perceived slights.
when the chips are down
At a critical or difficult time.

[Middle English, from Old English cyp, beam, from Latin cippus.]

chip 2

 (chĭp)
intr.v. chipped, chip·ping, chips
To cheep, as a bird.

[Imitative.]

chip n.

chip 3

 (chĭp)
n. Sports
A trick method of throwing one's opponent in wrestling.

[Origin unknown.]
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Verb1.chip away - remove or withdraw gradually: "These new customs are chipping away at the quality of life"
remove, take away, withdraw, take - remove something concrete, as by lifting, pushing, or taking off, or remove something abstract; "remove a threat"; "remove a wrapper"; "Remove the dirty dishes from the table"; "take the gun from your pocket"; "This machine withdraws heat from the environment"
Translations

w>chip away

vt sepweghauen; the woodpecker chipped away the barkder Specht hackte die Rinde ab
vi the sculptor chipped away until …der Bildhauer meißelte am Stein herum, bis …
References in classic literature ?
The reproofs suited her best of all: while I scolded she would chip away with her pen-knife at a pencil or a pen; fidgetting a little, pouting a little, defending herself by monosyllables, and when I deprived her of the pen or pencil, fearing it would be all cut away, and when I interdicted even the monosyllabic defence, for the purpose of working up the subdued excitement a little higher, she would at last raise her eyes and give me a certain glance, sweetened with gaiety, and pointed with defiance, which, to speak truth, thrilled me as nothing had ever done, and made me, in a fashion (though happily she did not know it), her subject, if not her slave.
Chip Away came about from a recorded interview with Labour MP Mr Benn about the Conservative government's plans to make students pay for their university education, which had previously been free.
Eventually, though, rescuers did manage to chip away a hole large enough for the boys leg to be freed, much to the relief of his mother.
And, on the back of recent fundraising drives, the club continued to chip away at its tax bill yesterday.
What is the Brady Campaign doing in your state to chip away at the way you do business?
A POPULAR city bus route will be phased out "through the back door" if transport bosses continue to chip away at the service, an angry councillor has claimed.
Meanwhile, the REIT continued to chip away at its plan to divest itself of non-core assets with the sale of 70 West 36th Street for $61.
Because the Trojans are not getting much pressure, teams are content to chip away at the defense, and USC coach Pete Carroll is sitting back in safe mode, without blitzing to increase pressure.
A Midwestern broker notes that transportation costs are continuing to chip away at margins and that the effect is particularly noticeable since this time last year.