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verb (used with object), stunned, stun·ning.
  1. to deprive of consciousness or strength by or as if by a blow, fall, etc.: The blow to his jaw stunned him for a moment.
  2. to astonish; astound; amaze: Her wit stunned the audience.
  3. to shock; overwhelm: The world was stunned by the attempted assassination.
  4. to daze or bewilder by noise.
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  1. the act of stunning.
  2. the condition of being stunned.
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Origin of stun

1250–1300; Middle English stonen, stunen (v.) < Old French estoner to shake, make resound; see astonish
Related formsun·stunned, adjective


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2, 3. See shock1. 4. stupefy.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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British Dictionary definitions for stun


verb stuns, stunning or stunned (tr)
  1. to render unconscious, as by a heavy blow or fall
  2. to shock or overwhelm
  3. to surprise or astound
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  1. the state or effect of being stunned
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Word Origin

C13 stunen, from Old French estoner to daze, stupefy, from Vulgar Latin extonāre (unattested), from Latin ex- 1 + tonāre to thunder
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 stun


c.1300, "to daze or render unconscious" (from a blow, powerful emotion, etc.), probably a shortening of Old French estoner "to stun" (see astonish). Stunning popularized for "splendid, excellent" c.1849.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper