20 January 2009


enchase: Again, the product of a crossword puzzle, this archaic word comes to us due to a need for certain vowels and certain consonants to be in certain places. But it has a certain flair, no? A transitive verb meaning to set a gem in a casing, a "chase." How does this relate to the more commonly understood "chase." Or, for that matter, the concept of a "chaser."

A bearing runs in a race.
Type -- that's it.
Type is imposed in a chase.

A rectangular iron frame in which pages or columns of type are imposed. [1913 Webster]

Enchase En*chase", v. t. [imp. & p. p. Enchased; p. pr. &
vb. n. Enchasing.] [F. ench[^a]sser; pref. en- (L. in) +
ch[^a]sse box containing relics, frame, case, the same word
as caisse case. See 1st Case, and cf. Chase, Encase,
1. To incase or inclose in a border or rim; to surround with
an ornamental casing, as a gem with gold; to encircle; to
inclose; to adorn.
[1913 Webster]

Enchased with a wanton ivy twine. --Spenser.
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An precious stones, in studs of gold enchased,
The shaggy velvet of his buskins graced. --Mickle.
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2. To chase; to ornament by embossing or engraving; as, to
enchase a watch case.
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With golden letters . . . well enchased. --Spenser.
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3. To delineate or describe, as by writing. [Obs.]
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All which . . . for to enchase,
Him needeth sure a golden pen, I ween. --Spenser.
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-- From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48

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