- a verse or stanza of a poem or song.
- the alliterating sound in a line of verse, as the w-sound in wind in the willows.
verb (used with object), staved or stove, stav·ing.
verb (used without object), staved or stove, stav·ing.
- to put, ward, or keep off, as by force or evasion.
- to prevent in time; forestall: He wasn't able to stave off bankruptcy.
Origin of stave
Synonyms for stave
Related Words for stavingthwart, avert, forestall, avoid, preclude, foil, counteract, anticipate, halt, obstruct, prohibit, forbid, obviate, restrict, hamper, check, debar, repress, arrest, restrain
Examples from the Web for staving
Contemporary Examples of staving
When push comes to shove, the pressure of staving off Ghana, Portugal, and Germany fell on Howard.Team USA Lost, but Tim Howard Is a Winner
July 1, 2014
Which is exactly how I plan on staving off boredom this Yom Kippur.Creative Cures for Your Yom Kippur Boredom
September 11, 2013
Historical Examples of staving
Yes, Lizzy, I know it, but I had been staving off this hour for many and many a year.Davenport Dunn, Volume 2 (of 2)
Charles James Lever
He was staving drunk, and went forward, as I thought, to get up his anchor.The Yacht Club
A stick fell plump upon the bottom of the tub, staving it in.The Backwoodsmen
Charles G. D. Roberts
Lucy had only been staving off the unpleasantness she had to speak.The Ordeal of Richard Feverel, Complete
Now these dispositions were reversed; the mover was for decision—they for staving it off.Thirty Years' View (Vol. I of 2)
Thomas Hart Benton
- Britishan individual group of five lines and four spaces used in staff notation
- another word for staff 1 (def. 9)
verb staves, staving, staved or stove
Word Origin for stave
"piece of a barrel," 1750, back-formation from staves (late 14c.), plural of staff (cf. leaves/leaf), possibly from Old English, but not recorded there. The verb (to stave in, past tense stove) is 1590s, originally nautical, on notion of bashing in the staves of a cask and letting out the contents; stave off (1620s) is literally "keep off with a staff," as of dogs.