From King Dictionary of Contemporary Englishchancechance1 /tʃɑːns $ tʃæns/ ●●●S1W1 noun1possibility [countable, uncountable]PROBABLY the possibility that something will happen, especially something you wantThere’s always the chance that something will go wrong.chance ofWhat are the team’s chances of success?If we did move to London, I’d stand a much better chance (=have a much better chance) of getting a job.There is little chance of her being found alive.Chances are (=it is likely that) you’ll be fine.2opportunity [countable]CHANCE/OPPORTUNITY a time or situation which you can use to do something that you want to doSYN opportunitychance to do somethingRalph was waiting for a chance to introduce himself.chance ofour only chance of escapeI’m sorry, I haven’t had a chance to look at it yet.If someone invited me over to Florida, I’d jump at the chance (=use the opportunity eagerly).3 →take a chance4 →somebody’s chances5luck [uncountable]CHANCE/BY CHANCE the way some things happen without being planned or caused by people → fateby chanceI bumped into her quite by chance in Oxford Street.leave something to chance (=to not plan something but just hope that everything will happen as intended)Dave had thought of every possibility, he was leaving nothing to chance.pure/sheer/blind chance (=not at all planned)It was pure chance that they ended up working in the same office in the same town.As chance would have it, the one time I wanted to see her, she wasn’t in.6 →by any chance7 →any chance of ...?8 →be in with a chance9 →no chance!/fat chance!10 →on the off chance11 →chance would be a fine thing! → game of chanceat game1(15)COLLOCATIONS – Meaning 1: the possibility that something will happen, especially something you wantverbshave/stand a chance (of something) (=it is possible you will do it)I think you have a good chance of getting the job.give somebody a chance of doing something (=say how likely it is that they will do it)He has been given a fifty-fifty chance of being fit for Sunday’s match.increase the chance of somethingCertain foods increase the chance of heart disease.improve the chance of somethingThe book shows you how to improve your chance of success.reduce/lessen the chance of somethingThe talks were aimed at reducing the chance of war.ruin any chance of something (=make it impossible for something to happen)Drinking alcohol can ruin any chance of weight loss.jeopardize any chance of something (=make something less likely to happen)This could jeopardize any chance of a ceasefire.adjectivesa good chance (=when something is likely)I think there is a good chance that he will say yes.every chance (=a good chance)There’s every chance that the baby will survive.some chanceThere’s some chance of snow later this week.a small/slight/slim chanceHe only has a very small chance of being elected.There’s a slight chance of some sunshine in the west.no/little/not much chanceThe prisoners knew there was little chance of escape.a one in three/four/ten etc chance (=used to say how likely something is)People in their 30s have a one in 3,000 chance of getting the disease.a fair chance (=a fairly good chance)If you work, you have a fair chance of passing the test.a sporting chance (=a fairly good chance)The proposals had at least a sporting chance of being accepted.a fighting chance (=a small but real chance)The Republican Party has a fighting chance at the next election.a fifty-fifty chance (=an equal chance that something will or will not happen)I’d say there is a 50–50 chance that the deal will go through.an outside/a remote chance (=a very small chance)He still has an outside chance of winning the championship.a million-to-one chance/a one in a million chance (=when something is extremely unlikely)It must have been a million-to-one chance that we’d meet.COLLOCATIONS – Meaning 2: a time or situation which you can use to do something that you want to doverbsget/have a chance to do somethingI’d like a job in which I get the chance to travel.give somebody/offer/provide a chanceI was given the chance to play the main part in the play.Sport provides a chance for you to get outside with friends.take a chance (=accept an opportunity)If I was offered the chance to be in the team, I’d take it.jump at a chance (=use an opportunity eagerly)Ed jumped at the chance to earn some extra money.grab/seize a chance (=quickly use an opportunity)As soon as she stopped speaking, I grabbed the chance to leave.miss/lose a chance (=not use an opportunity)He missed a chance to score just before half time.throw away/pass up/turn down a chance (=not accept or use an opportunity)Imagine throwing up a chance to go to America!welcome the chance to do somethingI’d welcome the chance to discuss the problem with someone.deserve a chanceEvery kid deserves a chance in life.blow a chance informal (=have a special opportunity and fail to use it)He thought he’d blown his chance of happiness.adjectivesa second chance/another chanceThe interview went badly, so I didn’t think they would give me a second chance.somebody’s last chanceThis is my last chance to try and pass the exam.phrasesthe chance of a lifetime (=one that you are very unlikely to have again)If you don’t decide soon, you’ll have missed the chance of a lifetime.now’s your chance spoken (=you have the opportunity to do something now)You’re not working so now’s your chance to write a book.given the chance/given half a chance (=if there is an opportunity to do something)Goats will eat anything, given half a chance.
Examples from the Corpus
chance• "Back to School Night" will be a chance for parents to meet their child's teacher.• It's a beautiful building - you should go and see it if you have a chance.• Then the war came and after the war the concert-managers offered me a chance to do all the Mahler symphonies.• He took less of a chance.• That would reduce his chances of missing something almost to nil.• It was her last chance to see him before she left town.• They now have to put up with seeing their young thrown in prison and coming out with little chance of being rehabilitated.• I never got the chance to thank him for all his help.• I wish he'd just give me the chance to explain.• You should take the chance to travel while you are still young.• The chances of such preservation need to be assessed before evidence is destroyed.• The chance of reproducing is high even if the organism is not very efficient.• They are beginning to quietly fancy their chances at Stamford Bridge.chance of• What do you think our chances of getting that contract are?chance to do something• Will be get a chance to try out his ideas?• I think we recognize that we still have a chance to be a good team.• I took the class because it was a chance to learn more about computers.• Deutsche once thought about bidding, thought not, and now has a last chance to think again.• A young brainleaped at the chance to know something his superiors did not.• On days like today they get the chance torace it.• And when children are given the chance to read in school, their reading is often followed by an examination.• Everyone is cashing in on the chance to make a little syrup.• She ended up marrying a man who chanced to come by looking for a room.• Well turn to page 35 for your chance to win one of ten great outdoorjackets from Karrimor.by chance• I met an old friendby chance on the train.• If by chance I'm not in when she calls, can you take a message?• Quite by chance, a TVcrew was filming in the area when the accident happened.• A tourist had filmed the robberyby chance.chancechance2 verb1RISK[transitive] to do something that you know involves a riskI wasn’t sure if I’d got quite enough petrol to get me home, but I decided to chance it.We decided not to chance our luck in the storm.She’d never played before, but she was ready to chance her arm (=take a risk by doing something which may fail).chance doing somethingI decided to stay where I was. I couldn’t chance being seen.2[intransitive] literaryCHANCE/BY CHANCE to happen in a way which is not expected and not plannedchance to do somethingShe chanced to be passing when I came out of the house.It chanced that we both went to Paris that year. →chance on/upon/across somebody/something→ See Verb table
Examples from the Corpus
chance• He chanced it with the bouncers.• There they chanced on the ruins of a temple, where among the broken walls an old monk had established his hermitage.• Before we had received a reply, Fitzroy Maclean chanced to call at my office.• They concealed the horses and made camp among the trees, out of sight of anyone who chanced to pass during the night.chance it• On the whole he preferred recorded music and the chance it gave for repeatedhearings.• Vincent spoke almost enviously of the miners' darkness, and the chance it gave them to reclaim the light.• If there's any chance it is placenta praevia, it could detach and cause a haemorrhage.• I hoped it would be put to use, though there was a chance it might be just ballast for the journey.• If you want to chance it, the first thing to do is book a venue.• And what a chance it was!• He chanced it with the bouncers.• There was no chance it would be fixed before it would be stripped.chance to do something• Before we had received a reply, Fitzroy Maclean chanced to call at my office.• Roman would be less likely to spot her now if he chanced to look round.• The industry, under Reagan, had little chance tosave itself.• Herr Schikenader, the formerproprietor, chanced to see me perform one evening.• Dubuque communityleaders were persuaded that a merger of Mercy and Finley offered the best chance tostem growing costs.• A ricocheting bulletchanced to take the front from the cigarettemachine.• I had a good chance totick off 100,000 people.• It probably was his only chance totouch a legend.chancechance3 adjective [only before noun]CHANCE/BY CHANCEnot planned or expectedSYN accidentalchance meeting/encounter/event etcA chance meeting with a journalist changed everything.A chance remark by one of his colleagues got him thinking.