stern


1stern

adjective \ˈstərn\

: very serious especially in an unfriendly way

: expressing strong disapproval or criticism

: not likely to change or become weaker

Full Definition of STERN

1
a :  having a definite hardness or severity of nature or manner :  austere
b :  expressive of severe displeasure :  harsh
2
:  forbidding or gloomy in appearance
3
:  inexorable <stern necessity>
4
:  sturdy, stout <a stern resolve>
stern·ly adverb
stern·ness \ˈstərn-nəs\ noun

Examples of STERN

  1. He gave me a stern look.
  2. <the army post's stern commander always had the utmost respect of those who served under him>

Origin of STERN

Middle English sterne, from Old English styrne; akin to Old English starian to stare — more at stare
First Known Use: before 12th century

Rhymes with STERN

2stern

noun

: the back part of a boat or ship

Full Definition of STERN

1
:  the rear end of a boat
2
:  a hinder or rear part :  the last or latter part

Origin of STERN

Middle English, rudder, probably of Scandinavian origin; akin to Old Norse stjōrn steering, rudder; akin to Old English stīeran to steer — more at steer
First Known Use: 14th century

Other Nautical Terms

avast, aweigh, flotsam, jib, keel, lee, port, starboard, stay

Stern

biographical name \ˈstərn\

Definition of STERN

Isaac 1920–2001 Am. (Russ.-born) violinist

Stern

biographical name

Definition of STERN

Otto 1888–1969 Am. (Ger.-born) physicist

Browse

Next Word in the Dictionary: sternad
Previous Word in the Dictionary: sterling area
All Words Near: stern

Seen & Heard

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

Get Our Free Apps
Voice Search, Favorites,
Word of the Day, and More
Join Us on FB & Twitter
Get the Word of the Day and More