or ston·ey

adjective, ston·i·er, ston·i·est.
  1. full of or abounding in stones or rock: a stony beach.
  2. pertaining to or characteristic of stone.
  3. resembling or suggesting stone, especially in its hardness.
  4. unfeeling; merciless; obdurate: a stony heart.
  5. motionless or rigid; without expression, as the eyes or a look: a hard, stony stare.
  6. petrifying; stupefying: stony fear.
  7. having a stone or stones, as fruit.
  8. Slang. stone-broke.

Origin of stony

before 1000; Middle English; Old English stānig. See stone, -y1
Related formsston·i·ly, adverbston·i·ness, nounun·ston·i·ly, adverbun·ston·i·ness, nounun·ston·y, adjective

Synonyms for stony Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for stoniness

Historical Examples of stoniness

  • Gone is the mass of the mountains, the stoniness of rocks, the hard solidity of iron.

  • Rousille ran along the road, unheeding the stoniness of the way.

    Autumn Glory

    Ren Bazin

  • However, not even Mawson's stoniness could quite repress all her feeling of wonder-growing joy.

    Rich Man, Poor Man

    Maximilian Foster

  • The sapota, or sapodtilla, is less characterized by stoniness, and one soon learns to like it.

  • The lemons, candles, and tobacco had the same astonishing quality of stoniness, and nothing yielded to the touch but the flour.

    The Frozen Pirate

    W. Clark Russell

British Dictionary definitions for stoniness



adjective stonier or stoniest
  1. of or resembling stone
  2. abounding in stone or stones
  3. unfeeling, heartless, or obdurate
  4. short for stony-broke
Derived Formsstonily, adverbstoniness, noun
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 stoniness



Old English stanig; see stone (n.) + -y (2).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper