Try Our Apps


Supposedly vs. Supposably


[chan-suh l, chahn-] /ˈtʃæn səl, ˈtʃɑn-/
the space about the altar of a church, usually enclosed, for the clergy and other officials.
Origin of chancel
1275-1325; Middle English < Middle French < Late Latin cancellus lattice, railing or screen before the altar of a church, Latin cancell(ī) (plural) lattice, railing, grating; see cancel
Related forms
chanceled, chancelled, adjective
subchancel, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
Cite This Source
Examples from the Web for chancel
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
British Dictionary definitions for chancel


the part of a church containing the altar, sanctuary, and choir, usually separated from the nave and transepts by a screen
Word Origin
C14: from Old French, from Latin cancellī (plural) lattice
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for chancel

c.1300, "part of the church around the altar," from Old French chancel, from Late Latin cancellus "lattice," from Latin cancelli (plural) "grating, bars" (see cancel); sense extended in Late Latin from the lattice-work that separated the choir from the nave in a church to the space itself.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for chancel

Many English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for chancel

Scrabble Words With Friends