Pronunciation: (chēf), [key]
1. the head or leader of an organized body of people; the person highest in authority: the chief of police.
2. the head or ruler of a tribe or clan: an Indian chief.
3. (cap.) U.S. Army.a title of some advisers to the Chief of Staff, who do not, in most instances, command the troop units of their arms or services: Chief of Engineers; Chief Signal Officer.
4. Informal.boss or leader: We'll have to talk to the chief about this.
a. the upper area of an escutcheon.
b. an ordinary occupying this area.
6. in chief,
a. in the chief position; highest in rank (used in combination): editor in chief; commander in chief.
b. Heraldry.in the upper part of an escutcheon.
1. highest in rank or authority: the chief priest; the chief administrator.
2. most important; principal: his chief merit; the chief difficulty.
Random House Unabridged Dictionary, Copyright © 1997, by Random House, Inc., on Infoplease.