stag·nant | \ˈstag-nənt \

Definition of stagnant 

1a(1) : not flowing in a current or stream stagnant water

(2) : without inflow and outflow a stagnant pool

b : stale long disuse had made the air stagnant and foul— Bram Stoker

2 : not advancing or developing a stagnant economy

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Other Words from stagnant

stagnancy \ˈstag-nən(t)-sē \ noun
stagnantly adverb

Examples of stagnant in a Sentence

… many people who make their living in academia are reasonably well insulated from financial devastation. For most tenured faculty, the worst they are likely to experience is stagnant pay and deferred retirement. — Andrew Delbanco, The New York Review of Books, 14 May 2009 "For adults, entertainment needs to be relevant to their life." Chen points to the stagnant US comic book industry as an example of irrelevance. "I don't want to see video games become like American superhero comics," he admits. "American comics live and die based on a very niche audience. In Japan, comics are a national art form." — Sid Shuman, Gamepro, May 2009 The blue-green algae blooms can occur in both freshwater and saltwater environments, but are most commonly found in stagnant bodies of water enriched by runoff, Paerl said. Public health officials in the southeastern United States are beginning to monitor water supplies for some of the toxins. — Bridget M. Kuehn, Journal of the American Medical Association, 25 May 2005
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Recent Examples on the Web

The additions of Allen Robinson from Jacksonville, Taylor Gabriel from Atlanta and Anthony Miller via the draft will boost a stagnant group, assuming Robinson returns fully healthy from last September’s ACL tear. Kalyn Kahler,, "NFC North Offseason Report Cards: Vikings Go All-In for Kirk Cousins, Packers Bring in TE Help," 21 June 2018 Across the Chicago area gaming tax revenue has remained largely stagnant since legal video gambling was introduced, even as the amount of money brought in to the state has jumped, a state report showed. Sarah Freishtat, Aurora Beacon-News, "Video gambling brings millions to Illinois, but casino cities aren't seeing the benefits," 10 May 2018 Clear flowing water, like streams, is usually a better, safer water source than stagnant bodies of water, such as lakes and ponds. Bailey Berg, Anchorage Daily News, "Tips for exploring Alaska’s wilderness trails," 2 May 2018 Amid the economic hardships, the minimum wage has maintained stagnant at 1,200 Egyptian pounds a month, but has dropped in real value from $170 per month in 2014, when Sisi was first elected, to $68 in 2018. Taylor Luck, The Christian Science Monitor, "How Egypt’s stubborn poverty threatens strongman Sisi’s grip," 23 Apr. 2018 The promotion will feature all the things that have become synonymous with life as a millennial: stagnant wages, a rising cost of living and crushing debt. Dan Gartland,, "Montgomery Biscuits Plan ‘Millennial Night’ With Avocados and Selfies," 12 July 2018 And, Neil, everything in public life today has to be laid against the backdrop of 40 years of stagnant wages. Fox News, "Sen. Rand Paul: Supreme Court vote will be divided along party lines," 28 June 2018 At the same time, Kat’s feeling a little too stagnant in her position as social media director at Scarlet. Gianluca Russo, Teen Vogue, ""The Bold Type" Season 1 Recap: Everything to Know Before Season 2," 12 June 2018 But addressing stagnant wages requires a better understanding of the relationship between pay, productivity and power. The Economist, "If wages are to rise, workers need more bargaining power," 31 May 2018

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

1610, in the meaning defined at sense 1a(1)

History and Etymology for stagnant

see stagnate

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Learn More about stagnant

Statistics for stagnant

Last Updated

12 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for stagnant

The first known use of stagnant was in 1610

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More Definitions for stagnant



English Language Learners Definition of stagnant

: not flowing

: not active, changing, or progressing


stag·nant | \ˈstag-nənt \

Kids Definition of stagnant

1 : not flowing a stagnant pool

2 : not active or brisk : dull stagnant business

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More from Merriam-Webster on stagnant

Spanish Central: Translation of stagnant

Nglish: Translation of stagnant for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of stagnant for Arabic Speakers

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