Roget's 21st Century Thesaurus, Third Edition Copyright © 2013 by the Philip Lief Group.


Or, 'The man can't 'ave no principles—he didn't get no chicken out o' me.'

With amusing bluntness he sent the chicken out to be killed before he ate it, complaining that the eggs were not hard enough.

The pretty dog, finding himself treated in this way, soon dropped the chicken out of his mouth.

Well, I'll bet you can't get a chicken out of our barn 'thout our Dog gettin' you, Mr. Smarty.

And although she could without difficulty have taken the chicken out with her bill, yet she did not do it.

The object is not to hurry the chicken out of its shell, but to prevent its being suffocated by being close shut up within it.

All I need do is to wait right here around the corner, and if he brings a chicken out, I'll simply tell him to drop it.

The puzzle was to make a chicken out of an orange with four cuts of the scissors and the prick of a pin.

But she turned and saw him—she choked the dog—and choked him until she choked the chicken out of him.

Do not attempt to let the chicken out at once, but help it a little every two or three hours.


Old English cicen "young fowl," which in Middle English came to mean "young chicken," then any chicken, from West Germanic *kiukinam (cf. Middle Dutch kiekijen, Dutch kieken, Old Norse kjuklingr, Swedish kyckling, German Küken "chicken"), from root *keuk- (echoic of the bird's sound and possibly also the root of cock (n.1)) + diminutive suffixes.

Adjective sense of "cowardly" is at least as old as 14c. (cf. hen-herte "a chicken-hearted person," mid-15c.). As the name of a game of danger to test courage, it is first recorded 1953. Chicken feed "paltry sum of money" is by 1897, American English slang; literal use (it is made from the from lowest quality of grain) by 1834. Chicken lobster "young lobster," is from c.1960s, American English, apparently from chicken in its sense of "young."


Roget's 21st Century Thesaurus, Third Edition Copyright © 2013 by the Philip Lief Group.