stark

adjective
\ ˈstärk How to pronounce stark (audio) \

Definition of stark

 (Entry 1 of 4)

1a : rigid in or as if in death
b : rigidly conforming (as to a pattern or doctrine) : absolute stark discipline
2 archaic : strong, robust
3 : utter, sheer stark nonsense
b(1) : having few or no ornaments : bare a stark white room
(2) : harsh, blunt the stark realities of death
5 : sharply delineated a stark contrast

stark

adverb

Definition of stark (Entry 2 of 4)

1 : in a stark manner
2 : to an absolute or complete degree : wholly stark naked stark mad

Stark

biographical name (1)
\ ˈshtärk How to pronounce Stark (audio) , ˈstärk How to pronounce Stark (audio) \

Definition of Stark (Entry 3 of 4)

Johannes 1874–1957 German physicist

Stark

biographical name (2)
\ ˈstärk How to pronounce Stark (audio) \

Definition of Stark (Entry 4 of 4)

John 1728–1822 American general in Revolution

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Other Words from stark

Adjective

starkly adverb
starkness noun

Examples of stark in a Sentence

Adjective

The room was decorated with stark simplicity. the stark reality of death This tragedy serves as a stark reminder of the dangers of drunk driving. There is a stark difference between them. His criticism of the movie stands in stark contrast to the praise it has received from others.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

This stands in stark contrast to Barack Obama, for example, who took office with a 68% approval rating. Brendan Lind, The Conversation, "The most unpopular presidential election winner ever could win again in 2020," 10 June 2019 The jarring sound provides a stark contrast to the quiet, clean workspace, but Whereat doesn't even register the noise. Maddy Lauria, baltimoresun.com, "At Delaware's beaches, scientists test waters for signs of fecal bacteria," 9 June 2019 In stark contrast to parties on the left in other Nordic countries, such as Sweden and Finland, the SD has proposed taking these policies even further. The Economist, "Under left or right, Denmark will get ever tougher with migrants," 4 June 2019 Eisdell coupled the icey-white shade with a jet-black liner on the bottom to create a stark contrast between the opposing hues. Maya Allen, Marie Claire, "Sophie Turner Wearing White Eyeliner Will Make You Want to Wear White Eyeliner," 15 May 2019 That’s a stark difference from just two years ago, when not a single Democratic incumbent was challenged in the primaries. Steve Leblanc, The Seattle Times, "Incumbents, fresh faces facing off in Massachusetts primary," 3 Sep. 2018 Despite Israel's portrayal of Jerusalem as united, there are stark differences between Arab and Jewish parts of the city. Tia Goldenberg, Fox News, "Israeli east Jerusalem plan gets cool Palestinian reception," 20 July 2018 The look is reminiscent of actor Billy Porter’s tuxedo gown at the Academy Awards this year, except Beetz’s white skirt offers a stark contrast to her suit. Terry Nguyen, Teen Vogue, "Zazie Beetz’s Suit-Dress Is The Definition of Camp," 7 May 2019 Immediately, a stark contrast is drawn at court between Catherine’s vibrantly dressed, diverse crew, and the noble members of the very Catholic, very austere Tudor court. Alexandra Macon, Vogue, "In The Spanish Princess, Catherine of Aragon’s Wedding Dress May Be All the Bridal Inspiration You Really Need," 24 Apr. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Adverb

Around the turn of the last century, our place, which is now surrounded by woods, sat stark on a bald hilltop with nary a tree in sight. Vogue, "3 Writers On Living Sustainably In 2018," 21 June 2018 Kruger’s stark, carefully laid out design cleverly turns the façade of an innocuous strip-building into the memory of a Greek temple, the classical style in which art museums were once conventionally built. Christopher Knight, latimes.com, "Artist Barbara Kruger turns a bland building into a screaming statement. Time to listen up," 14 June 2018 Joslyn Gray is the author of the humor blog stark. raving. Joslyn Gray, Redbook, "Parental Peer Pressure: A Game I Cannot Win," 12 Mar. 2012

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

Adjective

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Adverb

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for stark

Adjective

Middle English, stiff, strong, from Old English stearc; akin to Old High German starc strong, Lithuanian starinti to stiffen — more at stare

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Statistics for stark

Last Updated

14 Jun 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for stark

The first known use of stark was before the 12th century

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More Definitions for stark

stark

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of stark

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: having a very plain and often cold or empty appearance
: unpleasant and difficult to accept or experience
: very obvious : very plain and easily seen

stark

adverb

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

: completely or fully

stark

adjective
\ ˈstärk How to pronounce stark (audio) \
starker; starkest

Kids Definition of stark

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : barren sense 2, desolate a stark landscape
2 : clear and harsh She faced the stark reality of poverty.
3 : very obvious The differences were stark.

stark

adverb

Kids Definition of stark (Entry 2 of 2)

: completely stark naked

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More from Merriam-Webster on stark

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with stark

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for stark

Spanish Central: Translation of stark

Nglish: Translation of stark for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of stark for Arabic Speakers

Comments on stark

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