\ ˈstāj \

Definition of stage

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1a : one of a series of positions or stations one above the other : step
b : the height of the surface of a river above an arbitrary zero point flood stage
2a(1) : a raised platform
(2) : the part of a theater on which the acting takes place and which often includes the wings
(3) : the acting profession : the theater as an occupation or activity
(4) : soundstage
b : a center of attention or scene of action
3a : a scaffold for workmen
b : the small platform of a microscope on which an object is placed for examination
4a : a place of rest formerly provided for those traveling by stagecoach : station
b : the distance between two stopping places on a road
5a : a period or step in a process, activity, or development: such as
(1) : one of the distinguishable periods of growth and development of a plant or animal the larval stage of an insect
(2) : a period or phase in the course of a disease also : the degree of involvement or severity of a disease
b : one passing through a (specified) stage
6 : an element or part of an electronic device (such as an amplifier)
7 : one of two or more sections of a rocket that have their own fuel and engine
on the stage
: in or into the acting profession


staged; staging

Definition of stage (Entry 2 of 3)

transitive verb

1 : to produce (something, such as a play) on a stage
2 : to produce or cause to happen for public view or public effect stage a track meet stage a hunger strike
3 : to determine the phase or severity of (a disease) based on a classification of established symptomatic criteria also : to evaluate (a patient) to determine the phase, severity, or progression of a disease



Definition of stage (Entry 3 of 3)

: intended to represent a type or stereotype a stage Irishman a stage French accent

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Other Words from stage


stageful \ ˈstāj-​ˌfu̇l \ noun
stagelike \ ˈstāj-​ˌlīk \ adjective


stageable \ ˈstā-​jə-​bəl \ adjective

Synonyms for stage

Synonyms: Noun

dais, platform, podium, rostrum, stand, tribune

Synonyms: Verb

carry, give, mount, offer, present

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Examples of stage in a Sentence


an early stage of the disease children at the same stage of development The actors walked out onto the stage. He was on stage for the entire show. He has no intention of leaving the political stage. The company wants to compete on the world stage.


The school stages two plays each year. The students staged a protest. The school is staging a track meet. The prisoners are staging a hunger strike. The photograph of the two leaders shaking hands was deliberately staged. His career as a singer appeared to be over, but then he staged a comeback.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The couple celebrated New Year's Eve together in Las Vegas, where Gwen took the stage on December 31 for her Just a Girl residency at the Zappos Theater in Planet Hollywood Resort & Casino. Kelly O'sullivan, Country Living, "Gwen Stefani Posts Intimate New Year's Photo With Boyfriend Blake Shelton," 2 Jan. 2019 Janet Jackson Appreciation Day The hashtag was used on the day of the Super Bowl, where Justin Timberlake took the stage at the halftime show. Christopher Rosa, Glamour, "24 Social Media Moments That Literally Made 2018," 26 Dec. 2018 Roughly a year and a half ago, Regina Dugan, a former director for the US government’s Defense Advanced Projects Research Agency, took the stage at Facebook’s F8 developer conference. Nick Statt, The Verge, "Facebook fractures its secretive hardware division," 14 Dec. 2018 Ariana Grande took the stage last night to accept the award for Woman of the Year at Billboard's Women in Music 2018. Carolyn Twersky, Seventeen, "Ariana Grande Got Super Emotional in Her First Speech Post Split with Pete Davidson," 7 Dec. 2018 Since live musical acts were only onstage for one song this year, and there are video interludes give the crew time to help set and take down the stage. Alex Abad-santos, Vox, "The Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show sells a fantasy of empowerment. I sorta believed it.," 3 Dec. 2018 Tomorrow some of the biggest names in the modeling world are set to take the stage at the Victoria's Secret Fashion Show in New York—yet a few notable faces will be missing. Chrissy Rutherford, Harper's BAZAAR, "Why You Won't See These Angels in Tomorrow's VS Fashion Show," 7 Nov. 2018 After a brief chat with the judges – Kyle Mooney as Howie Mandel, Sasheer Zamata as Mel B, Kate McKinnon as Heidi Klum, and Beck Bennett as Simon Cowell — each took the stage to belt out a tune. Kayla Keegan, Good Housekeeping, "'America's Got Talent' Stars Have Feelings About 'Saturday Night Live' Spoofing Them," 5 Nov. 2018 Command and Conquer, once again Perhaps the weirdest part of this year's E3 was when EA took the stage to demo Command & Conquer: Rivals, rebooting its classic strategy series as a mobile game. Hayden Dingman, PCWorld, "This week in games: Blizzard dispels Diablo 4 rumors, and Hitman 2 adds Sean Bean to the cast," 19 Oct. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Pizzagate rumors online prompted one Alex Jones fan to drive to Washington, DC, and stage an armed confrontation. Timothy B. Lee, Ars Technica, "Op-ed: Alex Jones is a crackpot—but banning him from Facebook might be a bad idea [Updated]," 6 Aug. 2018 The fifth season brought the action to a bracing, tragic halt as the Litchfield prisoners tried to stage a revolution., "Orange Is The New Black," 9 July 2018 While some TikTok users have used it to stage their own karaoke sessions, taking on the duet with other TikTok Overwatch aficionados, others have abused the tool to make fun of the people who are participating in the meme. Julia Alexander, The Verge, "Reaction to TikTok’s Overwatch meme misses the original video’s intention," 2 Nov. 2018 Samantha is the one who famously took the fall for helping her father stage paparazzi photos in the weeks leading up to Meghan's wedding to Prince Harry in May. Grant did not provide any further details about Thomas' move into the fashion world. Sasha Savitsky, Fox News, "Meghan Markle's dad Thomas is starting a clothing line for men, half-sister says," 15 Aug. 2018 With the approvals in hand, B&L Productions Inc. can stage its Crossroads of the West Gun Show at the OC Fair & Event Center in August, October and November. Luke Money,, "After month-long delay, O.C. Fair Board approves contracts for 3 gun shows," 29 June 2018 To give students the experience of practicing before a judge and jury, the architects at Tackett & Co. fitted out the former bank with five authentic courtrooms where professors can stage mock trials. Inga Saffron,, "How a Philadelphia lawyer turned a historic bank into a shrine to democracy (and his legal career)," 3 June 2018 Vice President Mike Pence used his platform to stage a walkout of an Indianapolis Colts game in October, when about 20 players for the San Francisco 49ers knelt before the anthem at Lucas Oil Stadium. Gregg Doyel, Indianapolis Star, "Doyel: Fans should vote on NFL anthem policy with their wallets," 23 May 2018 Yamaha was smart enough to stage this road test for us in the Austrian Alps, where the roads suit it: sweeping turns, crazy-tight hairpins, gravel, wet corners, and discarded roadside schnitzel. David Curcurito, Popular Mechanics, "Don't Call It a Trike: Why We Love Yamaha’s Double-Front-Wheel Motorcycle," 27 Sep. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'stage.' 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 stage


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


1879, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1824, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for stage


Middle English, from Anglo-French estage abode, story of a building, state, from Vulgar Latin *staticum, from Latin stare to stand — more at stand

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Statistics for stage

Last Updated

7 Jan 2019

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Time Traveler for stage

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

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More Definitions for stage



English Language Learners Definition of stage

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a particular point or period in the growth or development of something

: a raised platform in a theater, auditorium, etc., where the performers stand

: the art or profession of acting and especially of acting in theaters



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

: to produce (a play, performance, etc.) on a stage

: to organize and produce (a public event)

: to arrange or do (something that is intended to get a lot of public attention)


\ ˈstāj \

Kids Definition of stage

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a raised floor (as for speaking or performing)
2 : a step forward in a journey, a task, a process, or a development : phase “The plan is still in its early stages …”— E. B. White, Charlotte's Web
3 : the theatrical profession or art
4 : a place where something important happens the political stage


staged; staging

Kids Definition of stage (Entry 2 of 2)

: to produce or show to others on or as if on the stage The drama club staged two plays. The schools staged a track meet.


\ ˈstāj \

Medical Definition of stage

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a period or step in a process, activity, or development: as
a : one of the distinguishable periods of growth and development of a plant or animal the larval stage of an insect
b : a period or phase in the course of a disease the rash stage of Lyme disease— R. H. Boyle also : the degree of involvement or severity of a disease advanced stage II or III disease (more than 10 positive lymph nodes found after axillary dissection) — M. S. Anscher et al
c : one of two or more operations performed at different times but constituting a single procedure a two-stage thoracoplasty
d : any of the four degrees indicating depth of general anesthesia
2 : the small platform of a microscope on which an object is placed for examination
staged; staging

Medical Definition of stage (Entry 2 of 2)

: to determine the phase or severity of (a disease) based on a classification of established symptomatic criteria also : to evaluate (a patient) to determine the phase, severity, or progression of a disease

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More from Merriam-Webster on stage

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with stage

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for stage

Spanish Central: Translation of stage

Nglish: Translation of stage for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of stage for Arabic Speakers

Comments on stage

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


someone who never drinks alcohol

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