\ ˈstak How to pronounce stack (audio) \

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 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 againstsuch a crime is nothing when stacked against a murder— Pete Censky

intransitive verb

: to form a stack

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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.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Likewise, most of the software that goes in the Fedora distribution isn’t written by the Fedora Project, but rather in thousands of other projects like the Linux kernel, systemd, the Wayland graphics stack, Firefox, the GCC compiler, and so on. Jim Salter, Ars Technica, "Linux distro review: Fedora Workstation 32," 19 May 2020 Instead of the classic stack-and-shed techniques to take on and defeat blocks inside the box, Thomas chooses to use athleticism to beat blockers to the spot or avoid their blocks altogether on his way toward the ball carrier. John Owning, Dallas News, "Film room: 3 backups who will play big roles for Cowboys, including why Tony Pollard needs to be an every-week RB," 18 May 2020 Mini cream cheese packets and a double-stack of American cheese not kept cold enough. Ebony Day, azcentral, "Employee handling food with bare hands among violations on this week's restaurant inspection list," 13 May 2020 That sizzling platter of fajitas and the stacks of tortillas, these are all dishes have been popularized as food for fellowship, grub for a gathering. Paul Stephen,, "Cooking with Paul: Why eating Mexican food is making us feel lonelier during the coronavirus," 2 May 2020 Layer logs in a stack, the largest on the bottom and the smallest on top. Sara Rodrigues, House Beautiful, "How to Light a Fire in Your Fireplace," 20 Apr. 2020 Jason Hammond walked into Chicago's Cook County Jail last month with a stack of cashier's checks totaling $75,000. Tyler Kendall, CBS News, "Activists are rushing to pay bail for inmates amid coronavirus threat," 16 Apr. 2020 Cyrus came prepared with a stack of photos from their Hannah Montana years—including, appropriately, a shot of Lola sanitizing Hannah's hands. Emily Dixon, Marie Claire, "Miley Cyrus and Emily Osment Had a 'Hannah Montana' Reunion on Instagram Live," 24 Mar. 2020 Now is absolutely not the time to head into the woods with a stack of towels and a punchbag. Nell Frizzell,, "Preparing To Give Birth During A Pandemic," 22 Mar. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Nazir Khalfe, a principal at Powers Brown Architecture who worked on the Brookshire project and many others across the Houston region, said the new buildings are designed to accommodate goods that can be stacked higher. Katherine Feser, Houston Chronicle, "Speculative Katy industrial project breaks despite COVID-19," 22 May 2020 Spread whipped cream between each layer, carefully stacking layers. Soleil Ho,, "In Japantown, Yasukochi’s Sweet Stop reopens after one of its owners passes away," 22 May 2020 Among the worst moments of the 1918 influenza pandemic are Philadelphia's overwhelmed morgue stacking unembalmed bodies without ice on multiple floors until storage was found, or the city resorting to steam shovels for digging mass graves. USA Today, "100 years ago, Philadelphia chose a parade over social distancing during the 1918 Spanish flu – and paid a heavy price," 22 May 2020 Gravediggers in the city reportedly stacked coffins three layers deep into mass graves to try to keep up with the body count. Beth Mole, Ars Technica, "Reports of mass graves as Latin America becomes new pandemic epicenter," 13 May 2020 Weber Rapidfire Chimney Charcoal Starter You can then stack the charcoal inside a Weber Charcoal Starter. NBC News, "11 best grilling accessories in 2020, according to experts," 12 May 2020 Push left hand off the ground and roll to the right—stacking hips, knees, and feet—and hold for 30 seconds. Ashley Mateo,, "High-Intensity, Low-Impact Training Will Burn Calories and Protect Your Joints," 12 May 2020 The filmmakers stack the deck a bit to elicit maximum sympathy for the character. Frank Scheck, The Hollywood Reporter, "'The Flood': Film Review," 30 Apr. 2020 This new research suggests that the practice of stacking multiple hives next to each other in commercial beekeeping may play right into the hands of IAPV. Alex Fox, Smithsonian Magazine, "Honey Bee Virus Tricks Hive Guards Into Admitting Sick Intruders," 30 Apr. 2020

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.

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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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Time Traveler for stack

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for stack

Last Updated

25 May 2020

Cite this Entry

“Stack.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 4 Jun. 2020.

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More Definitions for stack


How to pronounce stack (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of stack

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a usually neat pile : a group of things that are put one on top of the other
: a large amount of something
: a tall chimney on a factory, ship, etc., for carrying smoke away



English Language Learners Definition of stack (Entry 2 of 2)

: to arrange (things) in a stack : to put (things) in a usually neat pile
: to cheat at a card game by arranging (a deck of cards) in a special way
used to describe a situation in which one person, team, etc., is given an advantage over others often in a way that is unfair


\ 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

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More from Merriam-Webster on stack

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for stack

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with stack

Spanish Central: Translation of stack

Nglish: Translation of stack for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of stack for Arabic Speakers

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