Definition of chimney in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈtʃɪmni/

noun (plural chimneys)

1A vertical channel or pipe which conducts smoke and combustion gases up from a fire or furnace and typically through the roof of a building: a coal fire thrust yellow flames up the chimney a factory chimney
More example sentences
  • A small town was nearby as I noticed some stone, slate roofed buildings with smoking chimneys all about.
  • Atop the huge craft were, here and there, clusters of brassy and silvery machinery, like boilers and furnaces, with shiny chimneys that belched no smoke, but seemed only to vent a thin steam.
  • Images are beamed into the ops center; the towers are smoking like chimneys over the furnaces of Hell.
1.1A chimney stack: the outlines of rooftops and chimneys stood out against the pale sky
More example sentences
  • It is also set among some fine church towers and mill chimneys.
  • Its weathered wood-shingle walls, brick chimneys and prettily striped canopied windows are set amid the maple, birch and pine clad slopes of the Laurentian mountains.
  • today we take a look back at the days when slums, mill chimneys and river docks were a more common sight.
2A glass tube protecting the flame of a lamp: he trimmed the wick and put the glass chimney over the flame
More example sentences
  • Add a few drops of ammonia to the rinse water for glass lamps, chimneys, and globes.
  • The improved draft system, utilizing a glass chimney, yielded a brighter light that burned more cleanly.
  • Candles are an inexpensive and easy-to-store lighting option, but to be safe, use them with glass chimneys.
3A very steep narrow cleft by which a rock face may be climbed: he slid fifty feet down a chimney, and became wedged there
More example sentences
  • An offwidth is a crack which is too wide to use as a finger, hand or fist jam but too narrow to get right inside and climb as a chimney.
  • After a short crawl and a climb down a narrow chimney, South Chamber is reached.
  • Climb the obvious chimney / groove near the left hand end of the crag, stepping left at the top to finish up the steep wall above on excellent holds.


Middle English (denoting a fireplace or furnace): from Old French cheminee 'chimney, fireplace', from late Latin caminata, perhaps from camera caminata 'room with a fireplace', from Latin caminus 'forge, furnace', from Greek kaminos 'oven'.

  • A chimney was at first ‘a fireplace or furnace’ and comes via Old French from late Latin caminata, perhaps from camera caminata ‘room with a fireplace’, via Latin caminus ‘forge, furnace’ from Greek kaminos ‘oven’.

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