staple

1
[ stey-puh l ]
/ ˈsteɪ pəl /

noun

a short piece of wire bent so as to bind together papers, sections of a book, or the like, by driving the ends through the sheets and clinching them on the other side.
a similar, often U-shaped piece of wire or metal with pointed ends for driving into a surface to hold a hasp, hook, pin, bolt, wire, or the like.

verb (used with object), sta·pled, sta·pling.

to secure or fasten by a staple or staples: to staple three sheets together.

Nearby words

  1. staphyloptosis,
  2. staphylorrhaphy,
  3. staphyloschisis,
  4. staphylotomy,
  5. staphylotoxin,
  6. staple gun,
  7. stapler,
  8. stapling,
  9. star,
  10. star anise

Origin of staple

1
before 900; Middle English stapel orig., support, post, Old English stapol; cognate with Middle Dutch stapel foundation, German Stapel pile, Old Norse stǫpull pillar

staple

2
[ stey-puh l ]
/ ˈsteɪ pəl /

noun

adjective

verb (used with object), sta·pled, sta·pling.

to sort or classify according to the staple or fiber, as wool.

Origin of staple

2
1375–1425; late Middle English: place where merchants have trading rights < Middle Dutch stapel

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for staple


British Dictionary definitions for staple

staple

1
/ (ˈsteɪpəl) /

noun

a short length of thin wire bent into a square U-shape, used to fasten papers, cloth, etc
a short length of stiff wire formed into a U-shape with pointed ends, used for holding a hasp to a post, securing electric cables, etc

verb

(tr) to secure (papers, wire, etc) with a staple or staples

Word Origin for staple

Old English stapol prop, of Germanic origin; related to Middle Dutch stapel step, Old High German staffal

adjective

of prime importance; principalstaple foods
(of a commodity) forming a predominant element in the product, consumption, or trade of a nation, region, etc

noun

verb

(tr) to arrange or sort (wool, cotton, etc) according to length and fineness

Word Origin for staple

C15: from Middle Dutch stapel warehouse; see staple 1

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 staple
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper