[stuhb-uh l]


Usually stubbles. the stumps of grain and other stalks left in the ground when the crop is cut.
such stumps collectively.
any short, rough growth, as of beard.

Origin of stubble

1250–1300; Middle English stuble < Old French estuble < Vulgar Latin *stupula, Latin stipula stipule
Related formsstub·bled, stub·bly, adjectiveun·stub·bled, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for stubbly

Historical Examples of stubbly

  • The palm of his hand rasped a stubbly chin as he looked askance at me.

    The Pirate of Panama

    William MacLeod Raine

  • It seemed an age while I was crossing the short, stubbly grass of the Meadows.

  • He was a little man, all muscles and hands and feet, with a gray-red, stubbly beard.

  • "That's right," agreed the older man, rubbing his stubbly beard with his hand.

    A Texas Ranger

    William MacLeod Raine

  • The stubbly chins were all smooth, and that makes a great difference.

British Dictionary definitions for stubbly



  1. the stubs of stalks left in a field where a crop has been cut and harvested
  2. (as modifier)a stubble field
any bristly growth or surface
Derived Formsstubbly, adjective

Word Origin for stubble

C13: from Old French estuble, from Latin stupula, variant of stipula stalk, stem, stubble
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 stubbly



c.1300, "stumps of grain stalks left in the ground after reaping," from Old French estuble "stubble" (French éteule), from Latin stupla, reduced form of stipula "stalk, straw;" related to stipes "trunk, stick." Applied from c.1600 to bristles on a man's unshaven face.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper