\ ˈstak How to pronounce stack (audio) \
plural stacks

Definition of stack

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a large usually conical pile (as of hay, straw, or grain in the sheaf) left standing in the field for storage
2a : an orderly pile or heap
b : a large quantity or number
3 : an English unit of measure especially for firewood that is equal to 108 cubic feet
4a : a number of flues embodied in one structure rising above a roof
b : a vertical pipe (as to carry off smoke)
c : the exhaust pipe of an internal combustion engine
5a : a structure of bookshelves for compact storage of books usually used in plural
b stacks plural : a section of a building housing such structures
6 : a pile of poker chips
7a : a memory or a section of memory in a computer for temporary storage in which the last item stored is the first retrieved also : a data structure that simulates a stack a push-down stack
b : a computer memory consisting of arrays of memory elements stacked one on top of another


stacked; stacking; stacks

Definition of stack (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to arrange in a stack : pile
b : to pile in or on stacked the table with books stack the dishwasher
2a : to arrange secretly for cheating stack a deck of cards
b : to arrange or fix so as to make a particular result likely the odds are stacked against us will stack juries to suit themselves— Patrice Horn
3a : to assign (an airplane) by radio to a particular altitude and position within a group circling before landing
b : to put into a waiting line another dozen rigs are stacked up and waiting— P. H. Hutchins, Jr.
4 : compare used with against such a crime is nothing when stacked against a murder— Pete Censky

intransitive verb

: to form a stack

Other Words from stack


stacker noun

Examples of stack in a Sentence

Noun He had arranged the letters in stacks. She took a magazine from near the top of the stack. Verb She spent the afternoon splitting and stacking firewood. She stacked the plates in the cupboard. He stacked the books on the table. The other players accused him of stacking the deck. See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun On a table in the lobby was a stack of voter-registration forms. Peter Slevin, The New Yorker, 30 July 2022 For the occasion, Dunham chose a silvery silk dress, chunky platform Mary Janes and a stack of bracelets. Elizabeth Logan, Glamour, 26 July 2022 Accessories included a stack of gold bracelets by Van Cleef & Arpels and a tote bag by Saint Laurent. Chelsey Sanchez, Harper's BAZAAR, 25 July 2022 Placing a computer on a stack of books or a laptop stand can do the trick. Alexa Mikhail, Fortune, 12 July 2022 Is there anything better than a fresh stack of books at the start of the summer? Amy Joyce, Washington Post, 24 June 2022 But if your ballot is still sitting on your desk, or the nightstand, or underneath a stack of unread New Yorkers, don’t despair. Sonja Sharpstaff Writer, Los Angeles Times, 3 June 2022 Only a small stack of papers caught fire, officials have said, and the blaze was quickly extinguished by employees of a neighboring business. From Usa Today Network And Wire Reports, USA TODAY, 31 May 2022 Our secret weapon was certainly a stack of Nick Lowe’s songs written for Brinsley Schwarz, which were not so very well‐known then. Chris Willman, Variety, 30 May 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb While the doctors and hospitals are still trying to narrow down what causes his symptoms and bring him back to normal health, the medical bills stack higher and higher. Jon Blistein, Rolling Stone, 29 July 2022 Remove the stem from the bottom pumpkin(s); stack as shown. Charlyne Mattox, Country Living, 15 July 2022 Students who receive support to pay their tuition and fees can stack any other financial aid, such as federal Pell grants, on top of promise funds. Edward Conroy, Forbes, 17 June 2022 Beyond the unexpected outages and occasional bouts of slow speeds, companies like Comcast also stack inexplicable additional charges on customers’ bills. Jacob Siegal, BGR, 19 Dec. 2021 The blocks are trucked to the festival grounds, where cranes are used to stack them several stories tall and craftspeople shape them with saws and chisels. Washington Post, 3 Jan. 2021 Jonna finishes her puzzle and takes off, with Brad next, as Wes arrives to another puzzle-type of checkpoint where players must stack mini wood blocks domino-style in the shape of the top of a star. Sydney Bucksbaum,, 6 July 2022 At the very least, do NOT stack a bunch of crap like books or other devices on top of a charging device. PCMAG, 13 June 2022 For the initial collection, residents within the map area have until Monday, Aug. 16, to stack the remains from damaged trees on their terraces — the space between sidewalks and streets — in front of their homes. Jim Riccioli, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 13 Aug. 2021 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'stack.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of stack


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a

History and Etymology for stack


Middle English stak, from Old Norse stakkr; akin to Russian stog stack and probably to Old English staca stake

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The first known use of stack was in the 14th century

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Last Updated

2 Aug 2022

Cite this Entry

“Stack.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 13 Aug. 2022.

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More Definitions for stack


\ ˈstak How to pronounce stack (audio) \

Kids Definition of stack

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a neat pile of objects usually one on top of the other
2 : a large number or amount We've got a stack of bills to pay.
3 : a large pile (as of hay) usually shaped like a cone
5 : a structure with shelves for storing books


stacked; stacking

Kids Definition of stack (Entry 2 of 2)

: to arrange in or form a neat pile

More from Merriam-Webster on stack

Nglish: Translation of stack for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of stack for Arabic Speakers


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