CHIDAMBARAM, or Chedumbrum, a town of British India, in the South Arcot district of Madras, 7 m. from the coast and 151 m. S. of Madras by rail. Pop. (1901) 19,909. The pagodas at Chidambaram are the oldest in the south of India, and portions of them are gems of art. Here is supposed to have been the northern frontier of the ancient Chola kingdom, the successive capitals of which were Uriyur on the Cauvery, Combaconum and Tanjore. The principal temple is sacred to Siva, and is said to have been rebuilt or enlarged by a leper emperor, who came south on a pilgrimage and was cured by bathing in the temple tank; upwards of 60,000 pilgrims visit the temple every December. It contains a “hall of a thousand pillars,” one of numerous such halls in India, the exact number of pillars in this case being 984; each is a block of solid granite, and the roof of the principal temple is of copper-gilt. Three hundred of the highest-caste Brahmins live with their families within the temple enclosure.
CHIEF, (from Fr. chef, head, Lat. caput), the head or upper part of anything, and so, in heraldry, the upper part of the escutcheon, occupying one-third of the whole. When applied to a leading personage, a head man or one having the highest authority, the term chief or chieftain (Med. Lat. capitanus, O. Fr. chevetaine) is principally confined to the leader of a clan or tribe. The phrase “in chief” (Med. Lat. in capite) is used in feudal law of the tenant who holds his fief direct from the lord paramount (see Feudalism).
CHIEMSEE, also called Bayrisches Meer, the largest lake in Bavaria, lying on a high plateau 1600 ft. above the sea, between the rivers Inn (to which it drains through the Alz) and Salzach. With a length of 6 and a breadth of 9 m., it has an area of about 33 sq. m., and contains three islands, Herrenwörth, Frauenwörth and Krautinsel. The first, which has a circumference of 6½ m. and is beautifully wooded, is remarkable for the romantic castle which Louis II. of Bavaria erected here. It was the seat of a bishop from 1215 to 1805, and until 1803 contained a Benedictine monastery. The shores of the lake are flat on the north and south sides, but its other banks are flanked by undulating hills, which command beautiful and extensive views. The waters are clear and it is well stocked with trout and carp; but the fishing rights are strictly preserved. Steamers ply on the lake, and the railway from Rosenheim to Salzburg skirts the southern shores.
CHIENG MAI, the capital of the Lao state of the same name and of the provincial division of Siam called Bayap, situated in 99° 0′ E., 18° 46′ N. The town, enclosed by massive but decaying walls, lies on the right bank of the river Me Ping, one of the branches of the Me Nam, in a plain 800 ft. above sea-level, surrounded by high, wooded mountains. It has streets intersecting at right angles, and an enceinte within which is the palace of the Chao, or hereditary chief. The east and west banks of the river are connected by a fine teak bridge. The American Presbyterian Mission, established here in 1867, has a large number of converts and has done much good educational work. Chieng Mai, which the Burmese have corrupted into Zimmé, by which name it is known to many Europeans, has long been an important trade centre, resorted to by Chinese merchants from the north and east, and by Burmese, Shans and Siamese from the west and south. It is, moreover, the centre of the teak trade of Siam, in which many Burmese and several Chinese and European firms are engaged. The total value of the import and export trade of the Bayap division amounts to about £2,500,000 a year. The Siamese high commissioner of Bayap division has his headquarters in Chieng Mai, and though the hereditary chief continues as the nominal ruler, as is also the case in the other Lao states of Nan, Prè, Lampun, Napawn Lampang and Tern, which make up the division, the government is entirely in the hands of that official and his staff. The government forest department, founded in 1896, has done good work in the division, and the conservator of forests has his headquarters in Chieng Mai. The headquarters of an army division are also situated here. A British consul resides at Chieng Mai, where, in addition to the ordinary law courts, there is an international court having jurisdiction in all cases in which British subjects are parties. The population, about 20,000, consists mainly of Laos, with many Shans, a few Burmese, Chinese and Siamese and some fifty Europeans. Hill tribes (Ka) inhabit the neighbouring mountains in large numbers.
Chieng Mai was formerly the capital of a united Lao kingdom, which, at one time independent, afterwards subject to Burma and then to Siam, and later broken up into a number of states, has finally become a provincial division of Siam. In 1902 a rising of discontented Shans took place in Bayap which at one time seemed serious, several towns being attacked and Chieng Mai itself threatened. The disturbance was quelled and the malcontents eventually hunted out, but not without losses which included the commissioner of Prè and a European officer of gendarmerie.
CHIERI, a town and episcopal see of Piedmont, Italy, in the province of Turin, 13 m. S.E. by rail and 8 m. by road from the town of Turin. Pop. (1901) 11,929 (town), 13,803 (commune). Its Gothic cathedral, founded in 1037 and reconstructed in 1405, is the largest in Piedmont, and has a 13th century octagonal baptistery. Chieri was subject to the bishop of Turin in the 9th and 10th centuries, it became independent in the 11th century. In 1347 it submitted voluntarily to Count Amedeus VI. of Savoy to save itself from the marquis of Monferrato, and finally came under the dominion of Savoy in the 16th century. In 1785 it was made into a principality of the duke of Aosta. It was an early centre of trade and manufacture; and in the middle of the 15th century produced about 100,000 pieces of cotton goods per annum.
See L. Cibrario, Delle storie di Chieri (Turin, 1855).
CHIETI, a city of the Abruzzi, Italy, the capital of the province of Chieti, and the seat of an archbishop, 140 m. E.N.E. of Rome by rail, and 9 m. W. of Castellammare Adriatico. Pop. (1901) 26,368. It is situated at a height of 1083 ft. above sea-level, 3 m. from the railway station, from which it is reached by an electric tramway. It commands a splendid view of the Apennines on every side except the east, where the Adriatic is seen. It is an active modern town, upon the site of the ancient Teate Marrucinorum (q.v.), with woollen and cotton manufactories and other smaller industries. The origin of the see of Chieti dates from the 4th century, S. Justinus being the first bishop. The cathedral has been spoilt by restoration, and the decoration of the exterior is incomplete; the Gothic campanile of 1335 is, however, fine. The cathedral possesses two illuminated missals. Close by is the town hall, which contains a small picture gallery, in which, in 1905, was held an important exhibition of ancient Abruzzese art. The de Laurentiis family possesses a private collection of some importance. To the north of Chieti is the octagonal church of S. Maria del Tricaglio, erected in 1317, which is said (without reason) to stand upon the site of a temple of Diana. The order of the Theatines, founded in 1524, takes its name from the city. Under the Lombards Chieti formed part of the duchy of Benevento; it was destroyed by Pippin in 801, but was soon rebuilt and became the seat of a count. The Normans made it the capital of the Abruzzi.
CHI-FU, Chefoo, or Yen-t‘ai (as it is called by the natives), a seaport of northern China, on the southern coast of the Gulf of Chih-li, in the province of Shan-tung, near the mouth of the Yi-ho, about 30 m. E. of the city of Têng-chow-fu. It was formerly quite a small place, and had only the rank of an unwalled village; but it was chosen as the port of Têng-chow, opened to foreign trade in 1858 by the treaty of Tientsin, and it is now the residence of a Tao-t‘ai, or intendant of circuit, the centre of a gradually increasing commerce, and the seat of a British consulate, a Chinese custom-house, and a considerable foreign settlement. The native town is yearly extending, and though most of the inhabitants are small shop-keepers and coolies of the lowest class, the houses are for the most part well and solidly built of stone. The foreign settlement occupies a position between the native town and the sea, which neither affords a convenient access for shipping nor allows space for any great extension of area. Its growth, however, has hitherto been steady and rapid. Various streets have been laid out, a large