- a standing off or apart; aloofness.
- a tie or draw, as in a game.
- something that counterbalances.
- a prop for holding the top of a ladder away from the vertical surface against which it is leaning.
- Electricity. an insulator that supports a conductor above a surface.
- standing off or apart; aloof; reserved: an uncordial and standoff manner.
Origin of standoff
- (of a person) to be in an upright position on the feet.
- to rise to one's feet (often followed by up).
- to have a specified height when in this position: a basketball player who stands six feet seven inches.
- to stop or remain motionless or steady on the feet.
- to take a position or place as indicated: to stand aside.
- to remain firm or steadfast, as in a cause.
- to take up or maintain a position or attitude with respect to a person, issue, or the like: to stand as sponsor for a person.
- to have or adopt a certain policy, course, or attitude, as of adherence, support, opposition, or resistance: He stands for free trade.
- (of things) to be in an upright or vertical position, be set on end, or rest on or as on a support.
- to be set, placed, fixed, located, or situated: The building stands at 34th Street and 5th Avenue.
- (of an account, score, etc.) to show, be, or remain as indicated; show the specified position of the parties concerned: The score stood 18 to 14 at the half.
- to remain erect or whole; resist change, decay, or destruction (often followed by up): The ruins still stand. The old building stood up well.
- to continue in force or remain valid: The agreement stands as signed.
- to remain still, stationary, or unused: The bicycle stood in the basement all winter.
- to be or become stagnant, as water.
- (of persons or things) to be or remain in a specified state, condition, relation, relative position, etc.: He stood in jeopardy of losing his license.
- to have the possibility or likelihood: He stands to gain a sizable profit through the sale of the house.
- Chiefly British. to become or be a candidate, as for public office (usually followed by for).
- to take or hold a particular course at sea.
- to move in a certain direction: to stand offshore.
- (of a male domestic animal, especially a stud) to be available as a sire, usually for a fee: Three Derby winners are now standing in Kentucky.
- to cause to stand; set upright; set: Stand the chair by the lamp.
- to face or encounter: to stand an assault.
- to undergo or submit to: to stand trial.
- to endure or undergo without harm or damage or without giving way: His eyes are strong enough to stand the glare.
- to endure or tolerate: She can't stand her father.
- to treat or pay for: I'll stand you to a drink when the manuscript is in.
- to perform the duty of or participate in as part of one's job or duty: to stand watch aboard ship.
- the act of standing; an assuming of or a remaining in an upright position.
- a cessation of motion; halt or stop.
- a determined effort for or against something, especially a final defensive effort: Custer's last stand.
- a determined policy, position, attitude, etc., taken or maintained: We must take a stand on political issues.
- the place in which a person or thing stands; station.
- witness stand.
- a raised platform, as for a speaker, a band, or the like.
- stands, a raised section of seats for spectators; grandstand.
- a framework on or in which articles are placed for support, exhibition, etc.: a hat stand.
- a piece of furniture of various forms, on or in which to put articles (often used in combination): a nightstand; a washstand.
- a small, light table.
- a stall, booth, counter, or the like, where articles are displayed for sale or where some business is carried on: a fruit stand.
- newsstand: The papers usually hit the stands at 5 a.m.
- a site or location for business: After 20 years the ice-cream vendor was still at the same stand.
- a place or station occupied by vehicles available for hire: a taxicab stand.
- the vehicles occupying such a place.
- the growing trees, or those of a particular species or grade, in a given area.
- a standing growth, as of grass, wheat, etc.
- a halt of a theatrical company on tour, to give a performance or performances: a series of one-night stands on the strawhat trail.
- the town at which a touring theatrical company gives a performance.
- hive(def 2).
- Metalworking. a rolling unit in a rolling mill.
- Chiefly British. a complete set of arms or accoutrements for one soldier.
- stand by,
- to uphold; support: She stood by him whenever he was in trouble.
- to adhere to (an agreement, promise, etc.); affirm: She stood by her decision despite her sister's arguments.
- to stand ready; wait: Please stand by while I fix this antenna.
- to get ready to speak, act, etc., as at the beginning of a radio or television program.
- to be ready to board a plane, train, or other transport if accommodations become available at the last minute.
- stand down,
- Law.to leave the witness stand.
- to step aside; withdraw, as from a competition: I agreed to stand down so that she could run for the nomination unopposed.
- to leave or take out of active work or service: to stand down some of the ships in the fleet.
- stand for,
- to represent; symbolize: P.S. stands for “postscript.”
- to advocate; favor: He stands for both freedom and justice.
- Informal.to tolerate; allow: I won't stand for any nonsense!
- stand in with,
- to be in association or conspiracy with.
- to enjoy the favor of; be on friendly terms with.
- stand off,
- to keep or stay at a distance.
- to put off; evade.
- stand on,
- to depend on; rest on: The case stands on his testimony.
- to be particular about; demand: to stand on ceremony.
- Nautical.to maintain a course and speed.
- stand out,
- to project; protrude: The piers stand out from the harbor wall.
- to be conspicuous or prominent: She stands out in a crowd.
- to persist in opposition or resistance; be inflexible.
- Nautical.to maintain a course away from shore.
- stand over,
- to supervise very closely; watch constantly: He won't work unless someone stands over him.
- to put aside temporarily; postpone: to let a project stand over until the following year.
- stand to,
- to continue to hold; persist in: to stand to one's statement.
- to keep at steadily: Stand to your rowing, men!
- to wait in readiness; stand by: Stand to for action.
- stand up,
- to come to or remain in a standing position: to stand up when being introduced.
- to remain strong, convincing, or durable: The case will never stand up in court. Wool stands up better than silk.
- Slang.to fail to keep an appointment with (someone, especially a sweetheart or date): I waited for Kim for an hour before I realized I'd been stood up.
- stand up for,
- to defend the cause of; support: No one could understand why he stood up for an incorrigible criminal.
- to serve a bridegroom or bride, as best man or maid (matron) of honor.
- stand up to, to meet or deal with fearlessly; confront: to stand up to a bully.
Origin of stand
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
- US and Canadian the act or an instance of standing off or apart
- a deadlock or stalemate
- any situation or disposition of forces that counterbalances or neutralizes
- rugby short for stand-off half
- (intr) to navigate a vessel so as to avoid the shore, an obstruction, etc
- (tr) to keep or cause to keep at a distance
- (intr) to reach a deadlock or stalemate
- (tr) to dismiss (workers), esp temporarily
- (also tr) to be or cause to be in an erect or upright position
- to rise to, assume, or maintain an upright position
- (copula) to have a specified height when standingto stand six feet
- to be situated or locatedthe house stands in the square
- to be or exist in a specified state or conditionto stand in awe of someone
- to adopt or remain in a resolute position or attitude
- (may take an infinitive) to be in a specified positionI stand to lose money in this venture; he stands high in the president's favour
- to remain in force or continue in effectwhatever the difficulties, my orders stand
- to come to a stop or halt, esp temporarily
- (of water, etc) to collect and remain without flowing
- (often foll by at) (of a score, account, etc) to indicate the specified position of the parties involvedthe score stands at 20 to 1
- (also tr ; when intr , foll by for) to tolerate or bearI won't stand for your nonsense any longer; I can't stand spiders
- (tr) to resist; surviveto stand the test of time
- (tr) to submit toto stand trial
- (often foll by for) mainly British to be or become a candidatewill he stand for Parliament?
- to navigate in a specified directionwe were standing for Madeira when the storm broke
- (of a gun dog) to point at game
- to halt, esp to give action, repel attack, or disrupt an enemy advance when retreating
- (of a male domestic animal, esp a stallion) to be available as a stud
- (also tr) printing to keep (type that has been set) or (of such type) to be kept, for possible use in future printings
- (tr) informal to bear the cost of; pay forto stand someone a drink
- stand a chance to have a hope or likelihood of winning, succeeding, etc
- stand fast to maintain one's position firmly
- stand one's ground to maintain a stance or position in the face of opposition
- stand still
- to remain motionless
- (foll by for) USto tolerateI won't stand still for your threats
- stand to someone Irish informal to be useful to someoneyour knowledge of English will stand to you
- the act or an instance of standing
- an opinion, esp a resolutely held onehe took a stand on capital punishment
- a halt or standstill
- a place where a person or thing stands
- Australian and NZ
- a position on the floor of a shearing shed allocated to one shearer
- the shearing equipment belonging to such a position
- a structure, usually of wood, on which people can sit or stand
- a frame or rack on which such articles as coats and hats may be hung
- a small table or piece of furniture where articles may be placed or storeda music stand
- a supporting framework, esp for a tool or instrument
- a stall, booth, or counter from which goods may be sold
- an exhibition area in a trade fair
- a halt to give action, etc, esp one taken during a retreat and having some duration or some success
- cricket an extended period at the wicket by two batsmen
- a growth of plants in a particular area, esp trees in a forest or a crop in a field
- a stop made by a touring theatrical company, pop group, etc, to give a performance (esp in the phrase one-night stand)
- Southern African a plot or site earmarked for the erection of a building
- (of a gun dog) the act of pointing at game
- a complete set, esp of arms or armour for one man
- military the flags of a regiment
Word Origin and History for stand off
Old English standan (class VI strong verb; past tense stod, past participle standen), from Proto-Germanic *sta-n-d- (cf. Old Norse standa, Old Saxon and Gothic standan, Old High German stantan, Swedish stå, Dutch staan, German stehen), from PIE root *sta- "to stand" (see stet).
Sense of "to exist, be present" is attested from c.1300. Meaning "to pay for as a treat" is from 1821. Phrase stands to reason (1620) is from earlier stands (is constant) with reason. Phrase stand pat is originally from poker (1882); stand down in the military sense of "go off duty" is first recorded 1916. Standing ovation attested by 1968; standing army is from c.1600.
"pause, delay," Old English, from the root of stand (v.). Meaning "place of standing, position" is from c.1300; figurative sense is from 1590s. Sense of "action of standing or coming to a position" is attested from late 14c., especially in reference to fighting. Meaning "raised platform for a hunter or sportsman" is attested from c.1400.
Sense of "stall or booth" is first recorded c.1500. Military meaning "complete set" (of arms, colors, etc.) is from 1721, often a collective singular. Sense of "standing growth of trees" is 1868, American English. Theatrical sense of "each stop made on a performance tour" is from 1896. The word was formerly also slang for "an erection" (1867).
Idioms and Phrases with stand off
Stay at a distance, remain apart, as in Carol stood off from the others. [First half of 1600s] This usage gave rise to the adjective standoffish for “aloof” or “reserved in a haughty way.”
Put off, keep away, as in The police stood off the angry strikers. [Second half of 1800s]
In addition to the idioms beginning with stand
- stand a chance
- stand at ease
- stand by
- stand corrected
- stand down
- stand fast
- stand for
- stand guard
- stand in awe
- stand in for
- standing joke
- standing on one's head
- stand in good stead
- standing order
- stand off
- stand on
- stand one's ground
- stand on one's own feet
- stand out
- stand over
- stand pat
- stand still for
- stand the gaff
- stand the sight of
- stand to reason
- stand up
- stand up and be counted
- stand up for
- stand up to
- stand up with