stand·​still | \ ˈstan(d)-ˌstil How to pronounce standstill (audio) \

Definition of standstill

: a state characterized by absence of motion or of progress : stop brought traffic to a standstill

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Examples of standstill in a Sentence

The accident brought traffic to a standstill. battled each other to a standstill

Recent Examples on the Web

Lifeblood that stopping flowing this spring as the raging Mississippi flooded farmlands and river towns from Minnesota to Louisiana, bringing barge traffic to a standstill. CBS News, "A trip down the mighty Mississippi," 7 July 2019 Relations between the United States and North Korea have been at a standstill since the collapse of the second Trump-Kim summit in February in Vietnam. Editors, USA TODAY, "Trump heads to South Korea, Pride Month, NBA free agency: 5 things to know this weekend," 29 June 2019 Now, with the nuclear disarmament talks at a standstill since February, Moon is hoping once more to spur along diplomacy this weekend when Trump visits him in Seoul. Victoria Kim,, "Trump to arrive in Seoul as South Korea finds itself in a tough spot with North Korea," 28 June 2019 If your team or your product is unable to access this client data, does your business come to a standstill? Teresa Dietrich, Quartz at Work, "How to stay focused on the business decisions that matter most," 26 June 2019 Arsenal are re-evaluating their transfer options as moves for Yannick Carrasco and Ryan Fraser have seemingly come to a standstill., "Arsenal Continuing to Evaluate Options as Yannick Carrasco Hits Out at Dalian Yifang Treatment," 22 June 2019 Republicans who are bringing the Oregon Senate to a standstill by denying Democrats a quorum could stay out the rest of the week — or the remainder of the summer. Hillary Borrud | The Oregonian/oregonlive,, "Oregon Republicans walkout: Senators still a no-show Friday," 21 June 2019 But his efforts have come to a standstill since the breakdown in February of a summit meeting in Vietnam between President Trump and Kim Jong-un, the North Korean leader. Choe Sang-hun, New York Times, "South Korea to Send the North 50,000 Tons of Rice," 19 June 2019 Iran threatens to violate part of the 2015 nuclear deal; a nationwide blackout in Argentina brings the country to a standstill for a day. Catherine Kim, Vox, "Vox Sentences: Iran’s high-risk threat," 18 June 2019

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

1702, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for standstill

Last Updated

11 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for standstill

The first known use of standstill was in 1702

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More Definitions for standstill



English Language Learners Definition of standstill

: a state in which all activity or motion is stopped


stand·​still | \ ˈstand-ˌstil How to pronounce standstill (audio) \

Kids Definition of standstill

: the condition of not being active or busy : stop Business was at a standstill.


stand·​still | \ ˈstand-ˌstil How to pronounce standstill (audio) \

Medical Definition of standstill

: a state characterized by absence of motion or of progress : arrest cardiac standstill

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