stal·​wart | \ ˈstȯl-wərt How to pronounce stalwart (audio) \

Definition of stalwart

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: marked by outstanding strength and vigor of body, mind, or spirit stalwart common sense



Definition of stalwart (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a stalwart person
2 : an unwavering partisan

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Other Words from stalwart


stalwartly adverb
stalwartness noun

Choose the Right Synonym for stalwart


strong, stout, sturdy, stalwart, tough, tenacious mean showing power to resist or to endure. strong may imply power derived from muscular vigor, large size, structural soundness, intellectual or spiritual resources. strong arms the defense has a strong case stout suggests an ability to endure stress, pain, or hard use without giving way. stout hiking boots sturdy implies strength derived from vigorous growth, determination of spirit, solidity of construction. a sturdy table people of sturdy independence stalwart suggests an unshakable dependability. stalwart environmentalists tough implies great firmness and resiliency. a tough political opponent tenacious suggests strength in seizing, retaining, clinging to, or holding together. tenacious farmers clinging to an age-old way of life

Did You Know?


Sometime in the 15th century, English speakers began to use stalwart in place of the older form stalworth. Although stalworth is now archaic, it laid the groundwork for today's meaning of stalwart. In the 12th century, stalworth began to be used to describe strongly built people or animals (a meaning stalwart took on about two centuries later). It also came to be used as an adjective for people who showed bravery or courage (likewise a meaning passed on to stalwart). So, in a way, stalwart has been serviceable in keeping the spirit of stalworth alive. This character of stalwart is true to its roots. Stalworth came from the Old English word stælwierthe (meaning "serviceable"), which, in turn, is thought to come from terms meaning "foundation" and "worth."

Examples of stalwart in a Sentence


their strong and stalwart son the stalwart soldiers in the army of Alexander the Great, who willingly followed him to the ends of the known world

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

The race features stalwart members of the establishment, such as Moncef Marzouki, who led the country after the uprising. The Economist, "Tunisia’s election features fed-up voters and bizarre candidates," 12 Sep. 2019 In addition to stalwart allies the UAE and Egypt, this definitely includes Israel. David Mednicoff, The Conversation, "Why increasing Arab-Israeli closeness matters," 29 Aug. 2019 The more difficult mental exercise would be considering what might have happened if the team didn’t shed complementary pieces, valued possession receivers and stalwart offensive linemen. Conor Orr,, "Mark Sanchez’s Career Deserves More Than to Be Defined by One Play," 23 July 2019 House Democrats have launched a series of wide-ranging probes of Trump and his administration, and the pace of those inquiries has sparked complaints from his fiercest critics and his most stalwart allies. Bart Jansen, USA TODAY, "House investigations of President Trump hit a wall of delay; demands for records, witnesses are mostly on hold," 10 June 2019 Johnston rocks playing the Witch, Lady Constance (a majestic feline) and the Sun, and Luckadoo delivers a stalwart heroine as Squire Adira. Patti Restivo,, "'Pip-Pip The Dragon' at Howard Community College delivers magic that is out of this world," 14 June 2019 The cornerstones of the peculiarly stalwart French sense of égalité and fraternité were to be loosened and perhaps eventually dissolved. Christopher Ketcham, Harper's magazine, "A Play with No End," 22 July 2019 The Americans had experience facing stalwart defenses like Sweden and Spain over the past few weeks, but no unit had been this organized or committed to defending as the Netherlands. Laken Litman,, "Rapinoe, Lavelle Recover to Lead USWNT to Historic Fourth World Cup Title," 7 July 2019 The headliners themselves were stalwart custodians of their fans’ own teen dreams. Marc Hirsh,, "New Kids play generous hosts in TD Garden show," 29 June 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Otter + Pop Symmetry Series Build Your Own Case ($67.95; Get the stalwart protection of an Otterbox phone case with the convenience of a PopSockets PopGrip built right into the case. CNN Money, "Protect your iPhone 11 with these stylish and rugged cases," 16 Sep. 2019 The Cleveland Opera: This stalwart opera troupe led by Dorota Sobieska has two major projects on its plate for the 2019-20 season. Zachary Lewis,, "Don’t be bored! Cleveland teems with vocal, chamber, and orchestral music in 2019-20," 13 Sep. 2019 Another Upper East Side stalwart, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, also plays a major role in the film. Adam Rathe, Town & Country, "How The Goldfinch Recreated the Upper East Side on Screen—In Yonkers," 13 Sep. 2019 Special teams stalwarts Keith Smith and Kyle Wilber are both gone. Matt Kawahara,, "2019 Raiders unit breakdowns," 5 Sep. 2019 His retirement leaves the franchise without its most stalwart defender, locker-room leader and shining example of how to be a good pro. Helene St. James, Detroit Free Press, "How will Niklas Kronwall's retirement affect Detroit Red Wings?," 3 Sep. 2019 By the end of the weekend, the stalwart defensive end, along with a whale-sized package of draft picks, were gone. Peter Dawson, Houston Chronicle, "What to know about new Texans Laremy Tunsil, Kenny Stills, Carlos Hyde," 3 Sep. 2019 Then, as more and more data from long-term monitoring programs set up in the 1980s and ‘90s trickled in, the perception of the ever-stalwart platypus began to dim. Christie Wilcox, National Geographic, "The silent decline of the platypus, Australia’s beloved oddity," 29 Aug. 2019 Other defense stalwarts for the Vikings included Nathan O’Rourke, Conner Long, Ryder Malloy, Brantt Reiderich, Sean Fallon and Eric Church. Barry Faulkner, Daily Pilot, "Marina football dominates Torrance, improves to 2-0," 29 Aug. 2019

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


15th century, in the meaning defined above


15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for stalwart


Middle English, alteration of stalworth, from Old English stǣlwierthe serviceable

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Statistics for stalwart

Last Updated

7 Oct 2019

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Time Traveler for stalwart

The first known use of stalwart was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for stalwart



English Language Learners Definition of stalwart

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: very loyal and dedicated
: physically strong



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

formal : a loyal supporter


stal·​wart | \ ˈstȯl-wərt How to pronounce stalwart (audio) \

Kids Definition of stalwart

: sturdy sense 1, resolute a stalwart body stalwart spirits

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More from Merriam-Webster on stalwart

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for stalwart

Spanish Central: Translation of stalwart

Nglish: Translation of stalwart for Spanish Speakers Encyclopedia article about stalwart

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