Quantcast
Merriam-Webster Logo
  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
  • Scrabble
  • Spanish Central
  • Learner's Dictionary
1

staple

play
noun sta·ple \ˈstā-pəl\

Definition of staple

  1. :  a usually U-shaped fastener: asa :  a metal loop both ends of which are driven into a surface to hold the hook, hasp, or bolt of a lock, secure a rope, or fix a wire in placeb :  a small wire both ends of which are driven through layers of thin and easily penetrable material (as paper) and usually clinched to hold the layers togetherc :  a usually metal surgical fastener used to hold layers of tissue together (as in the closure of an incision)



Origin and Etymology of staple

Middle English stapel post, staple, from Old English stapol post; akin to Middle Dutch stapel step, heap, emporium, Old English steppan to step


First Known Use: 13th century


2

staple

transitive verb sta·ple

Simple Definition of staple

  • : to attach (something) with staples

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of staple

stapled

stapling

play \-p(ə-)liŋ\
  1. :  to provide with or secure by staples

Examples of staple in a sentence

  1. I stapled the pages in the upper left corner.



14th Century

First Known Use of staple

14th century


3

staple

noun sta·ple

Definition of staple

  1. 1 :  a town used as a center for the sale or exportation of commodities in bulk

  2. 2 :  a place of supply :  source

  3. 3 :  a chief commodity or production of a place

  4. 4a :  a commodity for which the demand is constantb :  something having widespread and constant use or appealc :  the sustaining or principal element :  substance

  5. 5 :  raw material

  6. 6a :  textile fiber (as wool and rayon) of relatively short length that when spun and twisted forms a yarn rather than a filamentb :  the length of a piece of such textile fiber



Origin and Etymology of staple

Middle English, from Anglo-French estaple, from Middle Dutch stapel emporium


First Known Use: 15th century


4

staple

adjective sta·ple

Simple Definition of staple

  • : used, needed, or enjoyed constantly by many people

  • : produced regularly or in large quantities

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of staple

  1. 1 :  used, needed, or enjoyed constantly usually by many individuals

  2. 2 :  produced regularly or in large quantities <staple crops such as wheat and rice>

  3. 3 :  principal, chief

Examples of staple in a sentence

  1. such staple items as flour and sugar

  2. That's a staple plot in mystery novels.

  3. staple crops like wheat, rice, or sugarcane



1615

First Known Use of staple

1615

Rhymes with staple



STAPLE Defined for Kids

1

staple

play
noun sta·ple \ˈstā-pəl\

Definition of staple for Students

  1. 1 :  a short thin wire with bent ends that is punched through papers and squeezed to hold them together or punched through thin material to fasten it to a surface

  2. 2 :  a piece of metal shaped like a U with sharp points to be driven into a surface to hold something (as a hook, rope, or wire)




2

staple

play
verb sta·ple

Definition of staple for Students

stapled

stapling

  1. :  to fasten with staples




3

staple

play
noun sta·ple

Definition of staple for Students

  1. 1 :  a chief product of business or farming of a place

  2. 2 :  something that is used widely and often <I went shopping for bread, milk, and other staples.>

  3. 3 :  the chief part of something <Potatoes are the staple of their diet.>




4

staple

play
adjective sta·ple

Definition of staple for Students

  1. 1 :  much used, needed, or enjoyed usually by many people <a staple plot in mystery novels>

  2. 2 :  1principal, chief <staple crops>




Medical Dictionary

staple

play
noun sta·ple \ˈstā-pəl\

Medical Definition of staple

  1. :  a usually U-shaped and typically metal surgical fastener used to hold layers of tissue together (as in the closure of an incision)

staple

transitive verb

stapled

;

stapling

stapler

\-plər\play noun




Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up staple? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

to criticize in a loud and angry way

Get Word of the Day daily email!

WORD GAMES

Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!

confounded-person

Which is a synonym of indolent?

lazy melancholy frenetic philistine
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ