take the chair


a seat, especially for one person, usually having four legs for support and a rest for the back and often having rests for the arms.
something that serves as a chair or supports like a chair: The two men clasped hands to make a chair for their injured companion.
a seat of office or authority.
a position of authority, as of a judge, professor, etc.
the person occupying a seat of office, especially the chairperson of a meeting: The speaker addressed the chair.
(in an orchestra) the position of a player, assigned by rank; desk: first clarinet chair.
the chair, Informal. electric chair.
(in reinforced-concrete construction) a device for maintaining the position of reinforcing rods or strands during the pouring operation.
a glassmaker's bench having extended arms on which a blowpipe is rolled in shaping glass.
British Railroads. a metal block for supporting a rail and securing it to a crosstie or the like.
verb (used with object)
to place or seat in a chair.
to install in office.
to preside over; act as chairperson of: to chair a committee.
British. to carry (a hero or victor) aloft in triumph.
verb (used without object)
to preside over a meeting, committee, etc.
get the chair, to be sentenced to die in the electric chair.
take the chair,
to begin or open a meeting.
to preside at a meeting; act as chairperson.

1250–1300; Middle English chaiere < Old French < Latin cathedra; see cathedra

chairless, adjective
unchair, verb (used with object)

chair, chairman, chairperson, chairwoman (see usage note at chairperson).

5. See chairperson.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
chair (tʃɛə)
1.  a seat with a back on which one person sits, typically having four legs and often having arms
2.  an official position of authority: a chair on the board of directors
3.  the person chairing a debate or meeting: the speaker addressed the chair
4.  a professorship: the chair of German
5.  railways an iron or steel cradle bolted to a sleeper in which the rail sits and is locked in position
6.  short for sedan chair
7.  in the chair chairing a debate or meeting
8.  take the chair to preside as chairman for a meeting, etc
9.  the chair an informal name for electric chair
10.  to preside over (a meeting)
11.  (Brit) to carry aloft in a sitting position after a triumph or great achievement
12.  to provide with a chair of office
13.  to install in a chair
[C13: from Old French chaiere, from Latin cathedra, from Greek kathedra, from kata- down + hedra seat; compare cathedral]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Word Origin & History

early 13c., from O.Fr. chaire, from L. cathedra "seat" (see cathedral). Figurative sense of "authority" was in M.E., of bishops and professors. Meaning "office of a professor" (1816) is extended from the seat from which a professor lectures (mid-15c.). Meaning "seat of
a person presiding at meeting" is from 1640s. Chairman is first attested 1650s; chairwoman 1690s; chairperson 1971.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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