stel·​lar | \ ˈste-lər How to pronounce stellar (audio) \

Definition of stellar

1a : of or relating to the stars : astral
b : composed of stars
2 : of or relating to a theatrical or film star stellar names
3a : principal, leading a stellar role
b : outstanding a stellar performance

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Synonyms for stellar


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Stella, the Latin word for "star," shines brightly in the word constellation, but "stella" words have been favored by scientists to describe earthly things as much as heavenly bodies. "Stellar" was once used to mean "star-shaped." That use is no longer current, but today biologists and geologists might use one of thesesynonyms: "stellular," "stellate," and "stelliform." Poets, too, have looked to "stella." John Milton used "stellar" in its infancy when he wrote in Paradise Lost: "these soft fires … shed down their stellar virtue." "Stellar" shot into its leading role as a synonym of "star" (as when we say "stellar pupil") in the late 1800s.

Examples of stellar in a Sentence

the rate of stellar expansion The movie has a stellar cast.
Recent Examples on the Web On the other hand, First Solar has seen stellar EBIT margin growth recently, with margins rising from -5.3% in FY 2019 to 11.7% in FY ’20, and further to 19% on an LTM basis. Trefis Team, Forbes, 12 Oct. 2021 Tim Anderson collected three more hits, and Ryan Tepera started a stellar finish for Chicago’s bullpen after Dylan Cease and Michael Kopech (1-0) struggled., 12 Oct. 2021 Despite their diminutive size, in terms of stellar activity, many red dwarfs punch well above their featherweight, walloping any orbiting planets with very powerful flares. Nola Taylor Tillman, Scientific American, 11 Oct. 2021 Buckingham stood by her side providing stellar guitar work and gorgeous harmonies. Mitchell Peters, Billboard, 10 Oct. 2021 Tim Anderson collected three ts, and Ryan Tepera started a stellar finish for Chicago’s bullpen after Dylan Cease and Michael Kopech struggled. Jay Cohen, San Francisco Chronicle, 10 Oct. 2021 The property features 25 miles of XC trails alone, and if that isn't enough for you, the helpful staff will shuttle you over to the White Pine Nordic Center (located on the Park City Golf Course) where another 12 miles of stellar terrain await. Brandon Perlman, Travel + Leisure, 10 Oct. 2021 Another person having a stellar time during fashion month was Nina Kraviz. Liana Satenstein, Vogue, 9 Oct. 2021 Oregon finished with the nation’s No. 1 recruiting class in the 2020 recruiting cycle and could do it twice in three years with its stellar 2022 haul. oregonlive, 7 Oct. 2021

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

circa 1656, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for stellar

Late Latin stellaris, from Latin stella star — more at star

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Time Traveler for stellar

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The first known use of stellar was circa 1656

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Last Updated

14 Oct 2021

Cite this Entry

“Stellar.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 25 Oct. 2021.

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English Language Learners Definition of stellar

: of or relating to the stars
: very good : excellent

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Britannica English: Translation of stellar for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about stellar


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