verb (used with object)
- to put (cargo, provisions, etc.) in the places intended for them.
- to put (sails, spars, gear, etc.) in the proper place or condition when not in use.
Origin of stow
Related Words for stow awaypreserve, hoard, defer, withhold, maintain, retain, save, stockpile, manage, keep, collect, spare, conserve, store, sell, handle, provide, carry, equip, furnish
Word Origin for stow
c.1300, verbal use of Old English noun stow "a place" (common in place names) from Proto-Germanic *stowijanan (cf. Old Frisian sto "place," Middle Low German, Middle Dutch, Dutch stouwen "to stow," Old High German stouwen "to stop, check," German stauen "to stow"), from PIE *stau-, from root *sta- "to stand" (cf. Old Church Slavonic stavljo "to place," Lithuanian stoviu "to stand;" see stet). The nautical sense of "put away to be stored, pack" (1550s) was enforced by Dutch stouwen "to cram, pack up close." Related: Stowed; stowing.
Put aside or store something until needed, as in We generally stow away the lawn furniture in the toolshed. [Late 1700s]
Hide oneself aboard ship or in a vehicle in order to get free transportation, as in The youngsters planned to stow away on a freighter but they never even got to the waterfront. This usage gave rise to the noun stowaway. [Mid-1800s]
Greedily consume food or drink, as in Bob sure can stow away a lot in a short time. [Colloquial; mid-1800s]