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

Examples of standstill in a Sentence

The accident brought traffic to a standstill. battled each other to a standstill
Recent Examples on the Web If these questions can’t be debated now, when time has slowed to a standstill, what does that say about all of it? Kate Walbert, The New Yorker, 29 Nov. 2021 As Covid-19 brought the U.S. to a standstill, the opioid epidemic took a sharp turn for the worse. New York Times, 20 Nov. 2021 Traffic was brought to a standstill as drivers stopped their cars on the freeway to pick up cash that was strewn all over the blacktop. Dan Heching,, 19 Nov. 2021 India's manufacturing capital Chennai came to a standstill on Sunday, with many areas flooded after the southern Indian coast was battered by heavy rainfall overnight, prompting authorities to issue warnings and evacuate people from low-lying areas. Reuters, CNN, 7 Nov. 2021 The capital and much of the country has been at a standstill since last month, when the G9 sealed entry into the port where fuel is stored and distributed. Democrat-gazette Staff From Wire Reports, Arkansas Online, 13 Nov. 2021 This is one of the reasons the adoption of analytics is at a standstill. Ryan Segar, Forbes, 8 Nov. 2021 Department funding has been largely frozen and long-range planning at a standstill even as the country faced the pandemic, an economic downturn and shifting military challenges around the region. Washington Post, 4 Nov. 2021 There’s been a gridlock at the Port of Los Angeles, which handles 40 percent of container traffic into the US, and where shipping containers holding alcoholic products and products that are used for alcohol production have been at a standstill., 3 Nov. 2021

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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Time Traveler for standstill

Time Traveler

The first known use of standstill was in 1702

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Dictionary Entries Near standstill

stand/stick out a mile


stand surety

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Statistics for standstill

Last Updated

2 Dec 2021

Cite this Entry

“Standstill.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 7 Dec. 2021.

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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

More from Merriam-Webster on standstill

Nglish: Translation of standstill for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of standstill for Arabic Speakers


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