verb (used without object), stam·ped·ed, stam·ped·ing.

to scatter or flee in a stampede: People stampeded from the burning theater.
to make a general rush: On hearing of the sale, they stampeded to the store.

verb (used with object), stam·ped·ed, stam·ped·ing.

to cause to stampede.
to rush or overrun (a place): Customers stampeded the stores.

Origin of stampede

1815–25, Americanism; < American Spanish estampida, Spanish, equivalent to estamp(ar) to stamp + -ida noun suffix
Related formsstam·ped·er, nounun·stam·ped·ed, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Related Words for stampede

panic, shoot, smash, crash, fling, flight, rout, dash, tear, charge, run, hurry, scattering, chase

Examples from the Web for stampede

Contemporary Examples of stampede

Historical Examples of stampede

  • Among the strikers there was a break that swiftly spread and became a stampede.

    The Harbor

    Ernest Poole

  • I was just mulish, I guess, because you were trying to stampede me.

    The Innocent Adventuress

    Mary Hastings Bradley

  • "A herd of mountain sheep on the stampede," was the Skipper's immediate verdict.

    The Fiery Totem

    Argyll Saxby

  • The miners were struggling with the demons of desire and ready to stampede at any moment.

  • The porters, the tent boys, all were gone in a stampede for safety.


    Stephen French Whitman

British Dictionary definitions for stampede



an impulsive headlong rush of startled cattle or horses
headlong rush of a crowda stampede of shoppers
any sudden large-scale movement or other action, such as a rush of people to support a candidate
Western US and Canadian a rodeo event featuring fairground and social elements


to run away or cause to run away in a stampede
Derived Formsstampeder, noun

Word Origin for stampede

C19: from American Spanish estampida, from Spanish: a din, from estampar to stamp, of Germanic origin; see stamp
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 stampede

1828, from Mexican Spanish estampida, from Spanish, "an uproar," from estamper "to stamp, press, pound," from the same Germanic root that yielded English stamp (v.). The political sense is first recorded 1846. As the name of an annual exhibition of cowboy skills in Calgary, Alberta, Canada, it is attested from 1912.


1823; see stampede (n.). Related: Stampeded; stampeding.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper