- 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
Examples from the Web for starkly
Contemporary Examples of starkly
There are neat stacks of femurs and units that contain whole bodies, still intact and starkly white.Did the Virgin Mary Warn Rwanda’s Holiest Town of the Genocide?
April 20, 2014
“We are called to put an end to economic and social inequalities”—a perhaps admirable but starkly utopian goal.A Tale of Two Bills: Clinton vs. De Blasio
January 5, 2014
But Jones, like most outrage-provoking commentators, starkly divides opinion.Feminist Flagellant: Liz Jones’s Surprising Brand of Tell-All
July 22, 2013
The terrain is at once starkly modern, and strangely retro in a pre-feminism Mad Men sort of way.How Americans Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Philandering Politicians
July 5, 2013
On-screen, going dark means Lena will become a starkly powerful evil witch.‘Beautiful Creatures’: 14 Notable Differences From the Book to the Screen
February 15, 2013
Historical Examples of starkly
It was a wild attempt to secure proof of the starkly impossible.Creatures of the Abyss
The day of reckoning came, and the "fat of the land" stared us starkly in the face.Wanted: A Cook
But life is life and starkly real if not essentially earnest.Rainy Week
Eleanor Hallowell Abbott
Then in that seething funnel there was waged a starkly fantastic conflict.Triplanetary
Edward Elmer Smith
And the promontories of the sea gate were starkly clear in the growing light.Key Out of Time
Andre Alice Norton
- (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
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).