stagger

[ stag-er ]
/ ˈstæg ər /
||

verb (used without object)

verb (used with object)

noun

Origin of stagger

1520–30; earlier stacker to reel, Middle English stakeren < Old Norse stakra to reel, equivalent to stak(a) to stagger + -ra frequentative suffix
SYNONYMS FOR stagger
1 Stagger, reel, totter suggest an unsteady manner of walking. To stagger is successively to lose and regain one's equilibrium and the ability to maintain one's direction: to stagger with exhaustion, a heavy load, or intoxication. To reel is to sway dizzily and be in imminent danger of falling: to reel when faint with hunger. To totter is to move in a shaky, uncertain, faltering manner and suggests the immediate likelihood of falling from weakness or feebleness: An old man tottered along with a cane.
3 vacillate.
5 astound, confound, dumfound.
7 alternate.
Related formsstag·ger·er, nounout·stag·ger, verb (used with object)un·stag·gered, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for staggers

British Dictionary definitions for staggers (1 of 2)

staggers

/ (ˈstæɡəz) /

noun (functioning as singular or plural)

a form of vertigo associated with decompression sickness
Also called: blind staggers a disease of horses and some other domestic animals characterized by a swaying unsteady gait, caused by infection, toxins, or lesions of the central nervous system

British Dictionary definitions for staggers (2 of 2)

stagger

/ (ˈstæɡə) /

verb

noun

the act or an instance of staggering
a staggered arrangement on a biplane, etc
See also staggers
Derived Formsstaggerer, noun

Word Origin for stagger

C13 dialect stacker, from Old Norse staka to push
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for staggers

stagger


v.

1520s, altered from stakeren (c.1300), from Old Norse stakra or Old Danish stagra, both "to push, stagger." Cognate with Dutch staggelen "to stagger," German staggeln "to stammer." Transitive sense of "bewilder, amaze" first recorded 1550s; that of "arrange in a zig-zag pattern" is from 1856. Related: Staggered; staggering.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper