- rousing, exciting, or thrilling: a stirring speech.
- moving, active, bustling, or lively: a stirring business.
- a mental impulse, sensation, or feeling: stirrings of hope.
- a small movement: the best thing she could do was to pretend that her husband's nocturnal stirrings didn't wake her
Origin of stirring
- to move one's hand or an implement continuously or repeatedly through (a liquid or other substance) in order to cool, mix, agitate, dissolve, etc., any or all of the component parts: to stir one's coffee with a spoon.
- to set in tremulous, fluttering, or irregular motion: A soft breeze stirred the leaves.
- to affect strongly; excite: to stir pity; to stir one's heart.
- to incite, instigate, or prompt (usually followed by up): to stir up a people to rebellion.
- to move briskly; bestir: to stir oneself.
- to move, especially in a slight way: He would not stir a finger to help them.
- to rouse from inactivity, quiet, contentment, indifference, etc. (usually followed by up): to stir up his potential.
- to bring up for notice or discussion.
- to disturb; trouble.
- to move, especially slightly or lightly: Not a leaf stirred.
- to move around, especially briskly; be active: Everyone in the house was stirring.
- to become active, as from some rousing or quickening impulse.
- to be emotionally moved or strongly affected.
- to be in circulation, current, or afoot: Is there any news stirring?
- the act of stirring or moving.
- the sound made by stirring or moving slightly.
- a state or occasion of general excitement; commotion: The news created a stir.
- a mental impulse, sensation, or feeling: a stir of hope.
- a jog, poke, or thrust: He gave the refuse a stir with his foot.
- movement, especially brisk and busy movement: There was too much clamor and stir for her.
Origin of stir1
SynonymsSee more synonyms for stir on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for stirring
Cook, stirring often, for 10 minutes or until the sugar is completely dissolved and the mixture is smooth.Make ‘The Chew’s’ Carla Hall’s Sticky Toffee Pudding
December 28, 2014
Add chocolate and butter to the bowl and melt, stirring to combine.Carla Hall’s Christmas Day Treat: Rum Balls
December 25, 2014
Economic development, then, is not simply about adding a cornucopia of talent or cool, then shaking and stirring it like a drink.The Rustbelt Roars Back From the Dead
Joel Kotkin, Richey Piiparinen
December 7, 2014
Sprinkle on the flour and cook for 30 seconds, stirring constantly.Make These Barefoot Contessa Chicken Pot Pies
November 29, 2014
Joseph Heller called it the “most stirring and lucid account of World War II that I have ever read.”Blood in the Sand: When James Jones Wrote a Grunt’s View of D-Day
November 15, 2014
The captain had told him to be back in an hour, and he felt that it was time for him to be stirring.Brave and Bold
What I hear at night is the creaking of stairs, when I know that nobody ought to be stirring.Malbone
Thomas Wentworth Higginson
When Nicias had concluded his stirring appeal, the embarkation of the troops began.Stories from Thucydides
H. L. Havell
This was done, and I was up and dressed before any other member of the family was stirring.Ned Myers
James Fenimore Cooper
The liquor of oysters should never be thickened by stirring in flour.Directions for Cookery, in its Various Branches
- exciting the emotions; stimulating
- active, lively, or busy
- to move an implement such as a spoon around in (a liquid) so as to mix up the constituentsshe stirred the porridge
- to change or cause to change position; disturb or be disturbedhe stirred in his sleep
- (intr often foll by from) to venture or depart (from one's usual or preferred place)he won't stir from the fireside
- (intr) to be active after a rest; be up and about
- (tr) to excite or stimulate, esp emotionally
- to move (oneself) briskly or vigorously; exert (oneself)
- (tr) to rouse or awakento stir someone from sleep; to stir memories
- informal (when tr, foll by up) to cause or incite others to cause (trouble, arguments, etc)
- stir one's stumps informal to move or become active
- the act or an instance of stirring or the state of being stirred
- a strong reaction, esp of excitementhis publication caused a stir
- a slight movement
- NZ informal a noisy party
- a slang word for prison in stir
Word Origin and History for stirring
"a beginning to move," mid-14c., verbal noun from stir (v). Figurative sense by late 14c. Related: Stirrings.
Old English styrian, from Proto-Germanic *sturjanan (cf. Middle Dutch stoeren, Dutch storen "to disturb," Old High German storan "to scatter, destroy," German stören "to disturb"), probably from the root of storm (q.v.). The noun sense of "commotion, disturbance, tumult" (late 14c., in phrase on steir) is probably from Old Norse styrr "disturbance, tumult" (see storm), from the same Proto-Germanic root; the sense of "movement, bustle" is probably from the English verb. Stir-fry (v.) is attested from 1959.
Idioms and Phrases with stirring
In addition to the idioms beginning with stir
- stir up
- stir up a hornets' nest
- cause a commotion (stir)