- sheer, utter, downright, or complete: stark madness.
- harsh, grim, or desolate, as a view, place, etc.: a stark landscape.
- extremely simple or severe: a stark interior.
- bluntly or sternly plain; not softened or glamorized: the stark reality of the schedule's deadline.
- stiff or rigid in substance, muscles, etc.
- rigid in death.
- Archaic. strong; powerful; massive or robust.
- utterly, absolutely, or quite: stark mad.
- Chiefly Scot. and North England. in a stark manner; stoutly or vigorously.
Origin of stark
- Harold Rayns·ford [reynz-ferd] /ˈreɪnz fərd/, 1880–1972, U.S. admiral.
- Jo·han·nes [yoh-hah-nuh s] /yoʊˈhɑ nəs/, 1874–1957, German physicist: Nobel prize 1919.
- John,1728–1822, American Revolutionary War general.
Related Words for starksimple, blunt, desolate, austere, harsh, depressing, grim, bleak, abrupt, arrant, bald, bare, blessed, complete, confounded, consummate, downright, entire, firm, flagrant
Examples from the Web for stark
Contemporary Examples of stark
His constant worship of his wife stands in stark contrast to scandals of the domestic nature in other sports.The Story of the World’s Greatest Cricket Player
December 24, 2014
These images, videos and messages became a lifeline between two worlds and a stark record of the distance between them.War Is About More Than Heroes, Martyrs, and Patriots
Nathan Bradley Bethea
November 12, 2014
The fun of the episode, however, stands in stark contrast to its conclusion.The Walking Dead’s ‘Self Help’: A Grim Show Displays Its Comedy Streak, and A Major Reveal
November 10, 2014
With some areas, the differences are stark in terms of where this windfall lands.Trustafarians Want to Tell You How to Live
October 31, 2014
A recent Pew Poll graphically likewise portrays the stark national divide, and the granular differences are gaping.The 2014 Election Is Yet Another Scrum in the Culture Wars
October 27, 2014
Historical Examples of stark
Now, there was stark wonder in his eyes as he put the question.Within the Law
A bullet strikes the lock of Stark's gun, and renders it useless.
Stark, with a part of the Rangers, made a dash and captured seven prisoners.
But stark fear and the memory of unendurable pain drove him on.Happy Ending
He listened to her stark with anguish, yet in utter submission.
- (usually prenominal) devoid of any elaboration; bluntthe stark facts
- grim; desolatea stark landscape
- (usually prenominal) utter; absolutestark folly
- archaic severe; violent
- archaic, or poetic rigid, as in death (esp in the phrases stiff and stark, stark dead)
- short for stark-naked
- completelystark mad
Word Origin for stark
- (stɑːk) Dame Freya (Madeline) (ˈfreɪə). 1893–1993, British traveller and writer, whose many books include The Southern Gates of Arabia (1936), Beyond Euphrates (1951), and The Journey's Echo (1963)
- (German ʃtark) Johannes (joˈhanəs). 1874–1957, German physicist, who discovered the splitting of the lines of a spectrum when the source of light is subjected to a strong electrostatic field (Stark effect, 1913): Nobel prize for physics 1919
Word Origin and History for stark
Old English stearc "stiff, strong" (related to starian "to stare"), from Proto-Germanic *starkaz (cf. Old Norse sterkr, Old Frisian sterk, Middle Dutch starc, Old High German starah, German stark, Gothic *starks), from PIE root *ster- "stiff, rigid" (see stare).
Meaning "utter, sheer, complete" first recorded c.1400, perhaps from influence of common phrase stark dead (late 14c.), with stark mistaken as an intensive adjective. Sense of "bare, barren" is from 1833. Stark naked (1520s) is from Middle English start naked (early 13c.), from Old English steort "tail, rump." Hence British slang starkers "naked" (1923).