The Bible

Bible Usage:


  • Included in Eastons: Yes
  • Included in Hitchcocks: No
  • Included in Naves: No
  • Included in Smiths: Yes
  • Included in Websters: Yes
  • Included in Strongs: Yes
  • Included in Thayers: Yes
  • Included in BDB: Yes

Strongs Concordance:

Easton's Bible Dictionary

1. A part of the insignia of office. A chain of gold was placed about Joseph's neck (Genesis 41:42); and one was promised to Daniel (5:7). It is used as a symbol of sovereignty (Ezekiel 16:11). The breast-plate of the high-priest was fastened to the ephod by golden chains (Exodus 39:17, 21).

2. It was used as an ornament (Proverbs 1:9; Song of Solomon 1:10). The Midianites adorned the necks of their camels with chains (Judges 8:21, 26).

3. Chains were also used as fetters wherewith prisoners were bound (Judges 16:21; 2 Samuel 3:34; 2 Kings 25:7; Jeremiah 39:7). Paul was in this manner bound to a Roman soldier (Acts 28:20; Ephesians 6:20; 2 Timothy 1:16). Sometimes, for the sake of greater security, the prisoner was attached by two chains to two soldiers, as in the case of Peter (Acts 12:6).

Smith's Bible Dictionary

Chains were used,

  1. As badges of office;
  2. For ornament;
  3. For confining prisoners.
  4. the gold chain placed about Joseph's neck, (Genesis 41:42) and that promised to Daniel, (Daniel 5:7) are instances of the first use. In (Ezekiel 16:11) the chain is mentioned as the symbol of sovereignty.
  5. Chains for ornamental purposes were worn by men as well as women. (Proverbs 1:9) Judith 10.4. The Midianites adorned the necks of their camels with chains. (Judges 8:21,26) Step-chains were attached to the ankle-rings. (Isaiah 3:16,18)
  6. The means adopted for confining prisoners among the Jews were fetters similar to our handcuffs. (Judges 16:21; 2 Samuel 3:34; 2 Kings 25:7; Jeremiah 39:7) Among the Romans the prisoner was handcuffed to his guard, and occasionally to two guards. (Acts 12:6,7; 21:33)

Webster's 1828 Dictionary

CHAIN, noun

1. A series of links or rings connected, or fitted into one another, usually made of some kind of metal, as a chain of gold, or of iron; but the word is not restricted to any particular kind of material. It is used often for an ornament about the person.

2. That which binds; a real chain; that which restrains, confines, or fetters; a bond.

If God spared not the angels that sinned, but delivered them into chains of darkness. 2 Peter 2:4.

3. Bondage; affliction.

He hath made my chain heavy. Lamentations 3:7.

4. Bondage; slavery.

In despotism the people sleep soundly in their chains.

5. Ornament. Proverbs 1:9.

6. A series of things linked together; a series of things connected or following in succession; as a chain of causes, of ideas, or events; a chain of being.

7. A range, or line of things connected, as a chain of mountains.

8. A series of links, forming an instrument to measure land.

9. A string of twisted wire, or something similar, to hang a watch on, and for other purposes.

10. In France, a measure of wood for fuel, and various commodities, of various length.

11. In ship-building, chains are strong links or plates of iron, bolted at the lower end to the ships side, used to contain the blocks called dead eyes, by which the shrouds of the mast are extended.

12. The warp in weaving, as in French.

CHAIN-; ump. This consists of a long chain equipped with a sufficient number of valves, moving on two wheels, one above the other below, passing downward through a wooden tube and returning through another. It is managed by a long winch, on which several men may be employed at once.

CHAIN-shot, two balls connected by a chain and used to cut down masts, or cut away shrouds and rigging.

CHAIN-wales of a ship, broad and thick planks projecting from a ships side, abreast of and behind the masts, for the purpose of extending the shrouds, for better supporting the masts, and preventing the shrouds from damaging the gunwale.

CHAIN-work, work consisting of threads, cords and the like, linked together in the form of a chain; as lineal chaining or tambour work, reticulation or net work, etc.

Top-chain, on board a ship, a chain to sling the sail-yards in time of battle, to prevent their falling, when the ropes that support them are shot away.

CHAIN, verb transitive

1. To fasten, bind or connect with a chain; to fasten or bind with any thing in the manner of a chain

2. To enslave; to keep in slavery.

And which more blest? Who chaind his country, say

Or he whose virtue sighed to lose a day?

3. To guard with a chain as a harbor or passage.

4. To unite; to form chain-work.

Webster's 1828 Dictionary

CHAINED, participle passive Made fast, or bound by a chain; connected by a chain; bound; enslaved.

Webster's 1828 Dictionary

CHAINING, participle present tense Binding, fastening or connecting with a chain; binding, or attaching to; enslaving.

Naves Topical Index

Used as ornaments:

Worn by princes
Genesis 41:42; Daniel 5:7; Daniel 5:29

Worn on ankles
Numbers 31:50; Isaiah 3:19

Worn on the breastplate of the high priest
Exodus 28:14; Exodus 39:15

As ornaments on camels
Judges 8:26

A partition of, in the temple
1 Kings 6:21; 1 Kings 7:17

Used to confine prisoners

General references
Psalms 68:6; Psalms 149:8; Jeremiah 40:4; Acts 12:6-7; Acts 21:33; Acts 28:20; 2 Timothy 1:16

Psalms 73:6; Proverbs 1:9; Lamentations 3:7; Ezekiel 7:23-27; Jude 1:6; 2 Peter 2:4; Revelation 20:1