- to gaze fixedly and intently, especially with the eyes wide open.
- to be boldly or obtrusively conspicuous: The bright modern painting stares out at you in the otherwise conservative gallery.
- (of hair, feathers, etc.) to stand on end; bristle.
- to stare at: to stare a person up and down.
- to effect or have a certain effect on by staring: to stare one out of countenance.
- a staring gaze; a fixed look with the eyes wide open: The banker greeted him with a glassy stare.
- stare down, to cause to become uncomfortable by gazing steadily at one; overcome by staring: A nonsmoker at the next table tried to stare me down.
- stare one in the face, to be urgent or impending; confront: The income-tax deadline is staring us in the face.
Origin of stare
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for stare
Then he's quiet, while I, nonplussed, just stare until he adds, “The camera must never move.”Alfred Hitchcock’s Fade to Black: The Great Director’s Final Days
December 13, 2014
The teen refused to drop his knife, according to officers, fixed them with “a 100-yard stare,” and walked toward them.The 14 Teens Killed by Cops Since Michael Brown
November 25, 2014
Strong, young, crisply uniformed, he or she would shake, sigh, stare blankly, or cry, recounting variations of this statement.Bergdahl’s Bitter Homecoming: The Psychological Cost of War
July 19, 2014
Over green tea, Than Gyi told us about her village, interrupting herself frequently to stare at us and laugh.A Little Too Off the Beaten Path in Burma
June 2, 2014
We stare in the mirror, we compare ourselves with digitally enhanced images of perfect women, and feel all wrong.Nicole Kidman Botox Insanity: Why All Women Lose Out When We Obsess Over Stars’ Faces
May 25, 2014
Why does he fling himself from his horse and stare so strangely about him?The White Company
Arthur Conan Doyle
She turned to stare at the Inspector with eyes that were very clear and very hard.Within the Law
I thought he must be crazed by over-study, and I could only sit and stare at him, open-mouthed.The Bacillus of Beauty
One after another of the eleven men felt the weight of his stare.
Kingozi continued to stare at him in the most uncompromising manner.
- (intr often foll by at) to look or gaze fixedly, often with hostility or rudeness
- (intr) (of an animal's fur, bird's feathers, etc) to stand on end because of fear, ill health, etc
- (intr) to stand out as obvious; glare
- stare one in the face to be glaringly obvious or imminent
- the act or an instance of staring
- dialect a starling
Word Origin and History for stare
Old English starian "to look fixedly at," from Proto-Germanic *star- "be rigid" (cf. Old Norse stara, Middle Low German and Middle Dutch staren, Old High German staren, German starren "to stare at;" German starren "to stiffen," starr "stiff;" Old Norse storr "proud;" Old High German storren "to stand out, project;" Gothic andstaurran "to be obstinate"), from PIE root *ster- "strong, firm, stiff, rigid" (cf. Lithuanian storas "thick," stregti "to become frozen;" Sanskrit sthirah "hard, firm;" Persian suturg "strong;" Old Church Slavonic staru "old;" cf. sterile and torpor). Not originally implying rudeness. Related: Stared; staring.
"starling," from Old English (see starling).