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chair rail

a molding on an interior wall for preventing the backs of chairs from rubbing against plaster.
Origin of chair rail
1835-45 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2016.
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Examples from the Web for chair-rail
Historical Examples
  • He crawled on his hands and knees until he reached the chair-rail, which he clutched desperately, drawing himself up.

    Parrot & Co. Harold MacGrath
  • I saw the top of the head over the chair-rail, and knew it was Sandy Carmichael's.

    Nancy Stair Elinor Macartney Lane
  • A chair-rail should be made in the dining-room of quarter-inch strips fastened to the walls three inches above the floor.

    The Boy Craftsman A. Neely Hall
  • The dining-room should have a wainscot of dark paper below the chair-rail, and a paper with little or no figure upon it above.

    The Boy Craftsman A. Neely Hall
  • In another moment I was standing outside the hovel, my chair-rail in my hand, every muscle of me quivering.

Contemporary definitions for chair-rail

a piece of molding attached to a wall, usu. separating the dado or wainscot from the upper wall, which is used to prevent chair backs from damaging the wall


Installing a chair rail will create a dramatic addition to any room.'s 21st Century Lexicon
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