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transitive verb, \ˈstrōk\

Definition of stroke


  1. 1 :  to rub gently in one direction; also :  caress

  2. 2 :  to flatter or pay attention to in a manner designed to reassure or persuade

stroker noun

Origin of stroke

Middle English, from Old English strācian; akin to Old High German strīhhan to stroke — more at strike

First Known Use: before 12th century




Simple Definition of stroke

  • medical : a serious illness caused when a blood vessel in your brain suddenly breaks or is blocked

  • : an act of hitting a ball or the movement made to hit a ball during a game

  • golf : an act of hitting the ball that is counted as part of a player's score

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of stroke

  1. 1 :  the act of striking; especially :  a blow with a weapon or implement

  2. 2 :  a single unbroken movement; especially :  one of a series of repeated or to-and-fro movements

  3. 3a :  a controlled swing intended to hit a ball or shuttlecock; also :  a striking of the ballb :  such a stroke charged to a player as a unit of scoring in golf

  4. 4a :  a sudden action or process producing an impact <a stroke of lightning>b :  an unexpected result <a stroke of luck>

  5. 5 :  sudden diminution or loss of consciousness, sensation, and voluntary motion caused by rupture or obstruction (as by a clot) of a blood vessel of the brain —called also apoplexy, brain attack, cerebrovascular accident

  6. 6a :  one of a series of propelling beats or movements against a resisting medium <a stroke of the oar>b :  a rower who sets the pace for a crew

  7. 7a :  a vigorous or energetic effort by which something is done, produced, or accomplished <a stroke of genius> <a brilliant diplomatic stroke>b :  a delicate or clever touch in a narrative, description, or construction

  8. 8 :  heartbeat

  9. 9 :  the movement in either direction of a mechanical part (as a piston) having a reciprocating motion; also :  the distance of such movement

  10. 10 :  the sound of a bell being struck <at the stroke of twelve>; also :  the specific time indicated by or as if by such a sound

  11. 11 [1stroke] :  an act of stroking or caressing

  12. 12a :  a mark or dash made by a single movement of an implementb :  one of the lines of a letter of the alphabet

at a stroke
  1. :  all at once <spent her savings at a stroke>

Examples of stroke in a sentence

  1. He had a stroke last winter.

  2. She has a strong backhand stroke.

  3. He is ahead by two strokes.

  4. She swims with long, smooth strokes.

  5. the stroke of an oar

  6. She knows the four basic strokes.

Origin of stroke

Middle English; akin to Old English strīcan to stroke — more at strike

First Known Use: 13th century




Definition of stroke


  1. transitive verb
  2. 1a :  to mark with a short line <stroke the t's>b :  to cancel by drawing a line through <stroked out his name>

  3. 2 :  to set the stroke for (a rowing crew); also :  to set the stroke for the crew of (a rowing boat)

  4. 3 :  hit; especially :  to propel (a ball) with a controlled swinging blow

  5. intransitive verb
  6. 1 :  to execute a stroke

  7. 2 :  to row at a certain number of strokes a minute


First Known Use of stroke


STROKE Defined for Kids



verb \ˈstrōk\

Definition of stroke for Students


  1. :  to rub gently in one direction <I stroked the dog's head.>




Definition of stroke for Students

  1. 1 :  the act of striking :  blow <the stroke of a whip>

  2. 2 :  one of a series of repeated movements (as in swimming or rowing)

  3. 3 :  a sudden serious illness caused by the breaking or blocking of an artery in the brain

  4. 4 :  the sound of striking (as of a clock or bell) <the stroke of midnight>

  5. 5 :  the hitting of a ball in a game (as golf or tennis)

  6. 6 :  a sudden or unexpected example <a stroke of luck>

  7. 7 :  a single movement or the mark made by a single movement of a brush, pen, or tool

  8. 8 :  a sudden action or process that results in something being struck <a stroke of lightning>

  9. 9 :  effort by which something is done or the results of such effort <It was a stroke of genius.>

Medical Dictionary


noun \ˈstrōk\

Medical Definition of stroke

  1. :  sudden impairment or loss of consciousness, sensation, and voluntary motion that is caused by rupture or obstruction (as by a clot) of a blood vessel supplying the brain and is accompanied by permanent damage of brain tissue Symptoms of stroke include numbness or weakness on one side of the body or face, confusion, impaired speech or vision, loss of coordination or balance, trouble walking, or severe headache. The most common type of stroke, ischemic stroke, results from a narrowed or blocked blood vessel, while hemorrhagic stroke results from a ruptured blood vessel. A very brief interruption of blood supply to the brain usually without lasting effects is called a ministroke or a transient ischemic attack. <… people at risk for stroke should be evaluated for surgery to open up blockages in the arteries of the neck.—Jay Siwek, The Washington Post, 22 June 1999> <Partial paralysis and speech difficulties often follow these strokes.—Bruce Bower, Science News, 25 Feb. 1984> <stroke survivors>—called also apoplexy, brain attack, cerebral accident, cerebrovascular accident

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