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door chain

a short chain with a removable slide fitting that can be attached between the inside of a door and the doorjamb to prevent the door from being opened more than a few inches without the chain being removed.
Origin of door chain
1830-40 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for door-chain
Historical Examples
  • Natasha puts one end of the door-chain to a little hook in the door.

  • There was but one—the one that had been present when Uncle Mo was adjusting that door-chain.

    When Ghost Meets Ghost William Frend De Morgan
  • With something like a shudder she let down the door-chain, unbarred the bolts, and opened the door.

    The Golden Butterfly Walter Besant

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