Definition of chamber in English:


Line breaks: cham|ber
Pronunciation: /ˈtʃeɪmbə


  • 1A large room used for formal or public events: a council chamber
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    • Such considerations cannot be material to the consideration of a planning application and serve to make subsequent debate in the Council chamber or Committee room meaningless.
    • About 200 people are expected to take part in the event, which will be held in the council chamber and committee rooms at City Hall.
    • The celebration will be held in the council chamber, in the Public Hall, Lee Lane, next Thursday.
  • 1.1One of the houses of a parliament: the upper chamber
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    • Labour will table another bill in 2007 proposing the total abolition of the peerage, making the upper house an all-appointed chamber.
    • The late Donald Dewar recognised this himself and even proposed that the House of Lords should be roped in as a revising chamber for the Scottish parliament.
    • Both chambers of parliament must still confirm the new government, but this is virtually assured by the ruling coalition's clear majority.
  • 1.2 (chambers) Law , British Rooms used by a barrister or barristers, especially in the Inns of Court.
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    • This seems to have been his response to the creeping erosion of the square's residential character primarily by the spread of barristers' chambers.
    • But try as they may the attractive, hard-faced young lawyers are little more than a side-show in this series about a fictional barristers' chambers in Leeds.
    • The consumer may be king in a supermarket, but not in a barrister's chambers, an accountant's office, or a clinic.
  • 1.3 Law A judge’s office, where proceedings may be held if not required to be held in open court.
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    • If both prosecution and defence lawyers agree, the hearing can be held in the privacy of the judge's chambers, not in open court.
    • Courts sit in chambers or in open court generally merely as a matter of administrative convenience.
    • Suddenly the door leading from the judges' chambers were flung open without the usual ceremonies.
  • 1.4 archaic A private room, especially a bedroom.
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    • Opposite the door was another, leading into the King's more private chambers - his bedroom, place of worship and relaxing room.
    • The four knights were immediately recognised as royal courtiers and ushered into the Archbishop's private chambers.
    • Then I went quickly to the king's chambers, escorted by the gentleman usher.
  • 2An enclosed space or cavity: a burial chamber
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    • An officer had to crawl through the narrow space leading to the chamber.
    • Trulli are centuries-old stone and masonry cottages built from cylindrical room-size chambers - each enclosed by conical stone roofs.
    • Held together with large screws and lit by bare light bulbs, these cramped quarters conflate domestic spaces with torture chambers.
  • 2.1A large underground cavern.
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    • The main turbine and generator chamber is one of the largest underground chambers excavated by man.
    • Leaf-cutter ant colonies of many millions can excavate room-sized underground chambers in which they cultivate fungus gardens.
    • His builders knew how to hew underground chambers without support, and they are still standing.
  • 2.2The part of a gun bore that contains the charge.
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    • The gun was of unusual design, with a series of explosive charges placed in side chambers extending obliquely from the barrel along its length, rather like the ribs on a fish-bone.
    • The chambers and bore are free of rust and pitting.
    • Cleaning the No.1 is a cinch because the chamber, bore and face of the breechblock are so accessible.
  • 2.3 Biology A cavity in a plant, animal body, or organ.
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    • Crocodilians' hearts have four chambers like mammals and birds, but there is a pore between the left and right ventricles which allows some mixing.
    • A normal heart is divided into four hollow chambers, two on the right and two on the left.
    • Unlike a human heart, which has two ventricles or pumping chambers, a reptile heart has only one.
    compartment, cavity, hollow, pocket, cell; part; Anatomy auricle, ventricle
  • 3 [as modifier] Music Of or for a small group of instruments: a chamber concert
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    • Yet I have found interest in individual guitar family instruments for use in guitar duos, or chamber music ensembles.
    • The orchestra was founded in 1951 by eight soloists from the most highly respected Viennese orchestras and chamber music ensembles.
    • I was first violinist of a chamber orchestra, played the cello in Vienna.


[with object] Back to top  
  • Place (a bullet) into the chamber of a gun: he chambered a fresh cartridge
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    • His dad had just finished chambering his last bullets.
    • It was the unmistakable sound of a pump shotgun chambering a load.
    • He ejected the clips of his guns and inserted fresh ones, chambering a round into the breach of each pistol.


Middle English (in the sense 'private room'): from Old French chambre, from Latin camera 'vault, arched chamber', from Greek kamara 'object with an arched cover'.

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