sting

verb
\ˈstiŋ \
stung\ˈstəŋ \; stinging\ˈstiŋ-​iŋ \

Definition of sting 

(Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to prick painfully: such as

a : to pierce or wound with a poisonous or irritating process

b : to affect with sharp quick pain or smart hail stung their faces

2 : to cause to suffer acutely stung with remorse

intransitive verb

1 : to wound one with or as if with a sting

2 : to feel a keen burning pain or smart also : to cause such pain

sting

noun

Definition of sting (Entry 2 of 2)

1a : the act of stinging specifically : the thrust of a stinger into the flesh

b : a wound or pain caused by or as if by stinging

3 : a sharp or stinging element, force, or quality

4 : an elaborate confidence game specifically : such a game worked by undercover police in order to trap criminals

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Other Words from sting

Verb

stingingly \ˈstiŋ-​iŋ-​lē \ adverb

Synonyms & Antonyms for sting

Synonyms: Verb

gouge, overcharge, soak, surcharge

Synonyms: Noun

ache, pain, pang, prick, shoot, smart, stitch, throe, tingle, twinge

Antonyms: Verb

undercharge

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Examples of sting in a Sentence

Verb

I got stung by a bee. The jellyfish stung the swimmer. The bees will sting if you bother them. The iodine will sting for a few minutes. The cold rain stung my eyes. The smoke made our eyes sting. She was stung by their harsh criticism.

Noun

When you get the shot, you'll feel a little sting. His arm was covered with bee stings. They were caught in a drug sting. a sting operation by police
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Few people were more stung by Mr. Trump’s decision than those who worked for Mr. Obama. Mark Landler, New York Times, "Trump Withdraws U.S. From ‘One-Sided’ Iran Nuclear Deal," 8 May 2018 The bloated carcasses of hundreds of thousands of hogs, chickens and other drowned livestock bobbed in a nose-stinging soup of fecal matter, pesticides, fertilizer and gasoline so toxic that fish flopped helplessly on the surface to escape it. Michael Biesecker, The Seattle Times, "Hurricane could flood many waste sites, creating toxic brew," 11 Sep. 2018 Mizell stumbled and ran toward a pond that was about 200 yards away as hundreds of bees continued to sting him. Christopher Carbone, Fox News, "'It's a miracle': 81-year-old man survives attack from hundreds of bees," 4 July 2018 The bees’ exuberance and their beautiful differences amid their similarities in form stung me. Sara Clarkson, chicagotribune.com, "Bees on Parade creating a lot of buzz, beauty in Clarendon Hills," 28 June 2018 After bees stung her twice, Mikaila Ulmer, now an eighth-grader, wanted to learn more about bees and their place in the ecosystem. Jeff Zillgitt, USA TODAY, "LeBron James breaks social media silence, hands over Instagram account for 'greater good'," 19 May 2018 Later, Soler knocked in another Royals run against White Sox starter Dylan Covey by stinging a double into the left-field corner. Maria Torres, kansascity, "Benches clear, Eric Skoglund dazzles in Royals' doubleheader win over White Sox | The Kansas City Star," 28 Apr. 2018 Tariffs ‘might sting us,’ said Nick Schweitzer, an apple grower in Michigan. Jesse Newman, WSJ, "Trade Fight Threatens Farm Belt Businesses," 2 July 2018 Florida beachgoers got a bit of a scare this week when Pensacola health officials issued warnings about stinging sea lice and the irritating, red rash the critters can cause. Amanda Macmillan, Health.com, "What Are Sea Lice, and How Do You Avoid Their Red, Itchy Rash?," 27 June 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

To sweeten the deal for any free holdouts, Flickr is also offering a 30 percent discount off of the first year of Flickr Pro through November 30th, which may help ease the sting of losing that free storage space. Chaim Gartenberg, The Verge, "Flickr will end 1TB of free storage and limit free users to 1,000 photos," 1 Nov. 2018 Back then, federal stimulus and a collapse in borrowing costs eased the sting. Spencer Jakab, WSJ, "Prophet of Muni Market Doom Wasn’t Wrong—Just Early," 26 Oct. 2018 Many people stop putting themselves out there as much in order to avoid the sting of rejection. Vanessa Marin, Allure, "Ask a Sex Therapist: What Should I Do if My Partner Is Kinkier Than I Am?," 16 Aug. 2018 One of the best strategies to defang the sting of criticism is to dissect it. Samantha Boardman, Marie Claire, "How to Handle Criticism," 9 Aug. 2018 Coventry, meanwhile, has to deal with the sting of this loss. Sean Begin, courant.com, "Baseball: Notre Dame Bats Too Much For Coventry In 10-6 Loss In Class S Title Game," 9 June 2018 The veteran Florida Panthers goaltender has been largely staying away from watching the NHL’s postseason, still troubled by the sting of missing the playoffs by one point two months ago. Matthew Defranks, Sun-Sentinel.com, "Pain of missing playoffs still lingering for Panthers goalie Roberto Luongo," 7 June 2018 My confidence is familiar with the sting of economic marginalization. refinery29.com, "The Revolution Will Not Be Salaried," 31 May 2018 Point Loma Nazarene put the sting of Thursday night’s lopsided loss to UC San Diego behind it and staved off elimination Friday in the NCAA Division II West Regional by beating No. 1 seed Cal State Monterey Bay. Kirk Kenney, sandiegouniontribune.com, "Point Loma Nazarene holds off Cal State Monterey Bay 13-12 to stay alive in NCAA Division II West Regional," 18 May 2018

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

Verb

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

Noun

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

History and Etymology for sting

Verb

Middle English, from Old English stingan; akin to Old Norse stinga to sting and probably to Greek stachys spike of grain, stochos target, aim

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Statistics for sting

Last Updated

1 Dec 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for sting

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

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More Definitions for sting

sting

verb

English Language Learners Definition of sting

 (Entry 1 of 2)

of an insect, plant, or animal : to hurt (someone) by piercing the skin with a sharp, pointed part that usually contains poison

: to cause a quick, sharp pain

: to feel a quick sharp pain

sting

noun

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

: a quick, sharp pain

: an injury caused when an insect or animal stings you

: a complicated and clever plan that is meant to deceive someone especially in order to catch criminals

sting

verb
\ˈstiŋ \
stung\ˈstəŋ \; stinging

Kids Definition of sting

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to prick painfully usually with a sharp or poisonous stinger A bee stung my hand.

2 : to suffer or affect with sharp quick burning pain Hail stung their faces.

3 : to hurt emotionally She was stung by the harsh criticism.

sting

noun

Kids Definition of sting (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : an act of pricking painfully usually with a sharp or poisonous stinger a bee's sting

2 : a wound or burning pain caused by the pricking of the skin with a stinger the sting of a bitter wind

3 : emotional pain the sting of criticism

4 : stinger

sting

verb
\ˈstiŋ \
stung\ˈstəŋ \; stinging\ˈstiŋ-​iŋ \

Medical Definition of sting 

(Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

: to prick painfully: as

a : to pierce or wound with a poisonous or irritating process

b : to affect with sharp quick pain

intransitive verb

: to feel or cause a keen burning pain or smart the injection stung

sting

noun

Medical Definition of sting (Entry 2 of 2)

1a : the act of stinging specifically : the thrust of a stinger into the flesh

b : a wound or pain caused by or as if by stinging

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sting

noun

Legal Definition of sting 

: an elaborate confidence game specifically : such a game worked by undercover police in order to catch criminals

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More from Merriam-Webster on sting

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with sting

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for sting

Spanish Central: Translation of sting

Nglish: Translation of sting for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of sting for Arabic Speakers

Comments on sting

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