- the stem or main axis of a plant.
- any slender supporting or connecting part of a plant, as the petiole of a leaf, the peduncle of a flower, or the funicle of an ovule.
- a similar structural part of an animal.
- a stem, shaft, or slender supporting part of anything.
- Automotive. a slender lever, usually mounted on or near the steering wheel, that is used by the driver to control a signal or function: The horn button is on the turn-signal stalk.
Origin of stalk1
- to pursue or approach prey, quarry, etc., stealthily.
- to walk with measured, stiff, or haughty strides: He was so angry he stalked away without saying goodbye.
- to proceed in a steady, deliberate, or sinister manner: Famine stalked through the nation.
- Obsolete. to walk or go stealthily along.
- to pursue (game, a person, etc.) stealthily.
- to proceed through (an area) in search of prey or quarry: to stalk the woods for game.
- to proceed or spread through in a steady or sinister manner: Disease stalked the land.
- an act or course of stalking quarry, prey, or the like: We shot the mountain goat after a five-hour stalk.
- a slow, stiff stride or gait.
Origin of stalk2
Examples from the Web for stalk
They go to Paris, but never leave the underground metro station, where they stalk the metro mall shops.‘Girlhood’: Coming of Age in France’s Projects
November 25, 2014
Famine will stalk the land and as many as seven million people will confront extreme food insecurity—in short, starvation.Preventing Genocide In South Sudan
Eric Reeves, John Prendergast
April 29, 2014
Plus, where else can you stalk your kids and go on tour with Snoop Dogg at the same time?This Week’s Hot Apps: Dec. 13, 2013
December 13, 2013
Traffickers often continue to harass and stalk their former captives via phone and in person.New Report Exposes Trafficking Rings in Egypt’s Sinai
December 12, 2013
When he at last tears it from the earth, its “stalk was all frayed and the flower itself no longer seemed so fresh and beautiful.”Turning to Tolstoy’s ‘Hadji Murat’ as Boston Locked Down
April 22, 2013
Then at last she reached forth her hand and broke the lily from its stalk.Ester Ried Yet Speaking
Some lives have not even a stalk on which fruits could hang, even if they did grow in five minutes.Pax Vobiscum
The girl took up a stalk of grass and nibbled it in laughing meditation.The Coryston Family
Mrs. Humphry Ward
When he could no longer endure, he would get up and stalk determinedly away from them.White Fang
Its flower is on the top of the stalk, which is sometimes eight feet high.The History of Louisiana
Le Page Du Pratz
- the main stem of a herbaceous plant
- any of various subsidiary plant stems, such as a leafstalk (petiole) or flower stalk (peduncle)
- a slender supporting structure in animals such as crinoids and certain protozoans, coelenterates, and barnacles
- any long slender supporting shaft or column
- to follow or approach (game, prey, etc) stealthily and quietly
- to pursue persistently and, sometimes, attack (a person with whom one is obsessed, often a celebrity)
- to spread over (a place) in a menacing or grim mannerfever stalked the camp
- (intr) to walk in a haughty, stiff, or threatening wayhe stalked out in disgust
- to search or draw (a piece of land) for prey
- the act of stalking
- a stiff or threatening stride
Word Origin and History for stalk
"stem of a plant," early 14c., probably a diminutive (with -k suffix) of stale "one of the uprights of a ladder, handle, stalk," from Old English stalu "wooden part" (as of a harp), from Proto-Germanic *stalo; related to Old English steala "stalk, support," and steall "place" (see stall (n.1)).
"pursue stealthily," Old English -stealcian, as in bestealcian "to steal along," from Proto-Germanic *stalkojanan, probably from a frequentative of the root of steal (cf. hark from hear, talk from tell). Or it may be from a sense of stalk (v.1), influenced by stalk (n.). Meaning "harass obsessively" first recorded 1991. Related: Stalked; stalking.
A stalking-horse was literally a horse trained to allow a fowler to conceal himself behind it to get within range of the game; figurative sense of "person who participates in a proceeding to disguise its real purpose" is recorded from 1610s.
- A slender or elongated support or structure, as one that connects or supports an organ.
- The main stem of a plant.
- A slender structure that supports a plant part, such as a flower or leaf.
- A slender supporting structure in certain other organisms, such as the reproductive structure in plasmodial slime molds or the part of a mushroom below the cap.
- A slender supporting or connecting part of an animal, such as the eyestalk of a lobster.