Middle English Dictionary Entry

chest(e n.
Quotations: Show all Hide all

Entry Info

Definitions (Senses and Subsenses)

(a) A trunk, chest, casket, box, etc., (for storing or safekeeping); a strongbox (for valuables, documents, money); the Ark (of the Covenant); (b) common ~, public chest or treasury; (c) ~ holt, wood for making chests; ~ lid; ~ wright, maker of chests.
Coffin, sarcophagus; also, tomb, grave.
Of a person, the body, the chest, the heart: repository or abode (of the soul, grief, secrets, etc.).
Miscell. senses: (a) an open box or vessel; a wicker basket; also, a torture box [first quot.]; (b) Noah's Ark; the 'ark' (of the babe Moses); (c) a pyx; (d) a casing; a compartment or division; (e) ?a yoke; (f) fig.?a protective enclosure; ?a casket.

Supplemental Materials (draft)

  • c1475(1392) *MS Wel.564 (Wel 564)45a/a : In þe secunde doctrine of þis chapitre schal treten of Ossium, þat is to seie, þe cheste or þe purs of þe cod or ballokis..it is compouned of two parties, þat is, of þe vttere and of þe ynnere. The vttere is compouned of þe skyn and þe lacertous longitudinel & transuersell..The ynnere part of þis cod is of þe substaunce of siphac.
  • Note: New sense.
    Note: Gloss: "The scrotum and internal membraneous covering of the testes."

Supplemental Materials (draft)

Note: Med., etc., see further J.Norri, Dictionary of Medical Vocabulary, s.v. chest.