A bird that lives in a barn and lays eggs is an example of a chicken.
A person who is afraid to dive in the pool even after every single one of his friends did is an example of someone who might be called a chicken.
Chickened out at the last moment.
A chicken lobster.
- To count on something that may not materialize.
- To engage in a test of courage in which, typically, two vehicles are driven directly toward one another in order to see which driver will swerve away first.
- To engage in mutual challenges or threats, hoping the opponent will withdraw before actual conflict or collision.
Idioms and Phrasal Verbs
Origin of chicken
- Middle English chiken from Old English cīcen
From American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition
- From Middle English, from Old English ċicen, cycen (“chicken”), diminutive of coc, cocc (“cock, rooster”), or from Proto-Germanic *kiukīną. Cognate with Dutch kuiken (“chick, chicken”), Low German küken (“chicken”), German Küken (“chick”), German dialectal Küchlein (“chicken”) and Old Norse kjúklingr (“chicken”). More at cock, -en.