verb (used with object), stopped or (Archaic) stopt; stop·ping.
- to check (a stroke, blow, etc.); parry; ward off.
- to defeat (an opposing player or team): The Browns stopped the Colts.
- Boxing.to defeat by a knockout or technical knockout: Louis stopped Conn in the 13th round.
- to close (a fingerhole) in order to produce a particular note from a wind instrument.
- to press down (a string of a violin, viola, etc.) in order to alter the pitch of the tone produced from it.
- to produce (a particular note) by so doing.
verb (used without object), stopped or (Archaic) stopt; stop·ping.
- an order to refuse payment of a check.
- stop order.
- the act of closing a fingerhole or pressing a string of an instrument in order to produce a particular note.
- a device or contrivance, as on an instrument, for accomplishing this.
- (in an organ) a graduated set of pipes of the same kind and giving tones of the same quality.
- Also called stop knob.a knob or handle that is drawn out or pushed back to permit or prevent the sounding of such a set of pipes or to control some other part of the organ.
- (in a reed organ) a group of reeds functioning like a pipe-organ stop.
- an articulation that interrupts the flow of air from the lungs.
- a consonant sound characterized by stop articulation, as p, b, t, d, k, and g.Compare continuant.
- to mask (certain areas of an etching plate, photographic negative, etc.) with varnish, paper, or the like, to prevent their being etched, printed, etc.
- to withdraw temporarily from school: Most of the students who stop out eventually return to get their degrees.
- stoop ball,
- stoop labor,
- stoop to,
- stop and frisk,
- stop at nothing,
- stop bath,
- stop bead,
- stop by
- to use every means available.
- to express, do, or carry out something without reservation.
Origin of stop
verb stops, stopping or stopped
- to alter the vibrating length of (a string on a violin, guitar, etc) by pressing down on it at some point with the finger
- to alter the vibrating length of an air column in a wind instrument by closing (a finger hole, etc)
- to produce (a note) in this manner
- the act of stopping the string, finger hole, etc, of an instrument
- a set of organ pipes or harpsichord strings that may be allowed to sound as a group by muffling or silencing all other such sets
- a knob, lever, or handle on an organ, etc, that is operated to allow sets of pipes to sound
- an analogous device on a harpsichord or other instrument with variable registers, such as an electrophonic instrument
- to play at full volume
- to spare no effort
- a setting of the aperture of a camera lens, calibrated to the corresponding f-number
- another name for diaphragm (def. 4)
Word Origin for stop
Old English -stoppian (in forstoppian "to stop up, stifle"), a general West Germanic word (cf. West Frisian stopje, Middle Low German stoppen, Old High German stopfon, German stopfen "to plug, stop up," Old Low Frankish (be)stuppon "to stop (the ears)"), but held by many sources to be a borrowing from Vulgar Latin *stuppare "to stop or stuff with tow or oakum" (cf. Italian stoppare, French étouper "to stop with tow"), from Latin stuppa "coarse part of flax, tow." Plugs made of tow were used from ancient times in Rhine valley. Barnhart, at least, proposes the whole Germanic group rather might be native, from a base *stoppon.
Sense of "bring or come to a halt" (mid-15c.) is from notion of preventing a flow by blocking a hole, and the word's development in this sense is unique to English, though it since has been widely adopted in other languages; perhaps influenced by Latin stupere "be stunned, be stupefied." Stop-and-go (adj.) is from 1926, originally a reference to traffic signals.
late 15c., from stop (v.).
pull out all the stops
Use all the resources or force at one's disposal, as in The police pulled out all the stops to find the thief. This term comes from organ-playing, where it means “bring into play every rank of pipes,” thereby creating the fullest possible sound. It has been used figuratively since about 1860.
In addition to the idioms beginning with stop
- stop at nothing
- stop by
- stop cold
- stop in
- stop off
- stop payment
- stop short
- stop someone's clock
- stop the clock
- stop up
- buck stops here
- pull out all the stops
- put an end (a stop) to