\ ˈstōn How to pronounce stone (audio) \

Definition of stone

 (Entry 1 of 7)

1 : a concretion of earthy or mineral matter:
a(1) : such a concretion of indeterminate size or shape
(2) : rock
b : a piece of rock for a specified function: such as
(1) : a building block
(2) : a paving block
(3) : a precious stone : gem
(6) : whetstone
(7) : a surface upon which a drawing, text, or design to be lithographed is drawn or transferred
2 : something resembling a small stone: such as
b : the hard central portion of a drupaceous fruit (such as a peach)
c : a hard stony seed (as of a date)
3 plural usually stone : any of various units of weight especially : an official British unit equal to 14 pounds (6.3 kilograms)
b : a round playing piece used in various games (such as backgammon or go)
5 : a stand or table with a smooth flat top on which to impose or set type
in stone
: in or into a permanent and unchangeable state plans are not set in stone


stoned; stoning; stones

Definition of stone (Entry 2 of 7)

transitive verb

1 : to hurl stones at especially : to kill by pelting with stones
2 archaic : to make hard or insensitive to feeling
3 : to face, pave, or fortify with stones
4 : to remove the stones or seeds of (a fruit)
5a : to rub, scour, or polish with a stone
b : to sharpen with a whetstone



Definition of stone (Entry 3 of 7)

: entirely, utterly used as an intensive often used in combinationstone-brokestone-dead



Definition of stone (Entry 4 of 7)

1 : of, relating to, or made of stone
2 : absolute, utter pure stone craziness— Edwin Shrake


biographical name (1)
\ ˈstōn How to pronounce Stone (audio) \

Definition of Stone (Entry 5 of 7)

Harlan Fiske 1872–1946 American jurist; chief justice U.S. Supreme Court (1941–46)


biographical name (2)

Definition of Stone (Entry 6 of 7)

Irving 1903–1989 originally surname Tennenbaum American writer


biographical name (3)

Definition of Stone (Entry 7 of 7)

Lucy 1818–1893 American suffragist

Keep scrolling for more

Examples of stone in a Sentence

Noun The pedestal is made of stone. His birthdate and date of death were carved on the stone. Verb He was stoned to death for his crimes. Stone the peaches before serving. Adverb The soup was stone cold. Adjective the stone stupidity of the senator's statements embarrassed even her staffers
See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The council presidency has long been a stepping stone to the mayor’s office. Ian Duncan,, "Baltimore Councilman Leon Pinkett says he’ll run for council president; Sneed says she’s also considering job," 14 Sep. 2019 According to Darktrace, a computer-security firm, attackers from Finland managed to break into the tank’s systems, then used it as a stepping stone for the rest of the casino’s networks. The Economist, "A connected world will be a playground for hackers," 12 Sep. 2019 But what is the difference between seeking your vocation as a work-a-day role versus a stepping stone to bigger things? Gwen Moran, Fortune, "How to Tell If Your Job Is a Stepping Stone to a Career," 9 Sep. 2019 McIntyre, a longtime local lawyer who led the county bar association, has stressed that he is committed to San Diego and wouldn’t use the council seat as a stepping stone to higher office in Sacramento. David Garrick, San Diego Union-Tribune, "Republicans rallying to save one of two remaining San Diego council seats," 2 Sep. 2019 Kristi Nichols, the Alamo’s on-site staff archaeologist, said older artifacts such as stone tools and pieces of Native American ceramics known as Goliad ware, have also been found at the Shrine of Texas Liberty. Scott Huddleston,, "Early mission-era artifact unearthed in downtown San Antonio at Alamo," 30 Aug. 2019 Both fighters believe this could be a stepping stone to landing a shot at Jon Jones and the light heavyweight championship. Andrew Mahoney,, "Fighters in main event at UFC’s Boston card have something to prove," 22 Aug. 2019 The distorted sound is a stepping stone to something greater. Nicole Blackwood,, "Trans Chicagoans learn to construct sound from square one, for safety and artistic pursuits," 12 Aug. 2019 Giving myself permission to feel was a stepping stone into my healing process. Alexa Lisitza, Teen Vogue, "The Best Advice from Therapists, From 50 Different People," 9 July 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb This ridiculous notion only held a semblance of truth or reality because one was stoned. Los Angeles Times, "Calendar letters to the editor: Young Latinx musicians are carrying on a tradition," 30 Aug. 2019 The tools look similar to stone artifacts that were made around that time in what is now Japan, according to the study's abstract. Fox News, "First American settlers may have been in Idaho 16,500 years ago, study says," 29 Aug. 2019 The pack dashed together along the cobble-stoned, barricaded street course., "Florence, Kentucky man gored in the thigh in Pamplona bull run," 7 July 2019 In the early months, Mutahwa says that he was beaten up and stoned. David Mckenzie, CNN, "Fighting Ebola is hard but in the Congo mistrust and fear is making it harder," 22 June 2019 As Kirk Cousins tossed to Dalvin Cook and booted to the offensive left, right guard Josh Kline pulled to the right and stoned Falcons defensive end Takk McKinley. Albert Breer,, "Mike Zimmer and the Vikings May Deserve More Hype This Season Than Last," 12 Sep. 2019 In the old days of sci-fi conventions and Bobby Sherman fan clubs, fandom was a subculture reserved for the very young or the very obsessed—or, in the case of the Grateful Dead, the very stoned. Michael Schulman, The New Yorker, "Superfans: A Love Story," 9 Sep. 2019 Even had we not been stoned on LSD, this kind of talk, under the psychological conditions prevailing in Southern California that night, would have induced paranoia in the rest of us. Win Mccormack, The New Republic, "The Manson Girl Who Got Away," 29 July 2019 By the time darkness had consumed the house on Romero Canyon Road, Richard, Jan, Barbara, Ruth, and I were fairly well stoned. Win Mccormack, The New Republic, "The Manson Girl Who Got Away," 29 July 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Instead, a curved, gently sloped, stone path landscaped with shrubs, leads from the driveway to the front door. Sally A. Downey,, "In Lower Gwynedd, a renovated bungalow to grow old in," 5 Feb. 2018 Stone tools, animal bones and evidence of fire were also found within the same layer at the site. Ashley Strickland, CNN, "Oldest Homo sapiens fossils discovered," 7 June 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'stone.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of stone


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


13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


13th century, in the meaning defined above


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for stone


Middle English, from Old English stān; akin to Old High German stein stone, Old Church Slavonic stěna wall, and perhaps to Sanskrit styāyate it hardens — more at steato-

Keep scrolling for more

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for stone


How to pronounce Stone (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of stone

 (Entry 1 of 3)

: a hard substance that comes from the ground and is used for building, carving, etc.
: a small piece of rock
: a piece of rock used for a particular purpose



English Language Learners Definition of stone (Entry 2 of 3)

: to throw stones at (someone or something)
: to kill (someone) by throwing stones
British : to remove the hard, large seed of (a fruit)



English Language Learners Definition of stone (Entry 3 of 3)

: totally or completely


\ ˈstōn How to pronounce stone (audio) \

Kids Definition of stone

 (Entry 1 of 4)

1 : earth or mineral matter hardened in a mass : rock
2 : a piece of rock coarser than gravel Don't throw stones.
4 : a stony mass that sometimes forms in certain organs of the body a kidney stone
5 : the seed of a fruit (as a peach) in its hard case
6 plural usually stone : an English measure of weight equaling 14 pounds (about 6.3 kilograms)


stoned; stoning

Kids Definition of stone (Entry 2 of 4)

1 : to throw stones at
2 : to remove the stony seeds of stone cherries



Kids Definition of stone (Entry 3 of 4)

: relating to or made of stone a stone wall



Kids Definition of stone (Entry 4 of 4)

: completely, totally The soup was stone- cold.


\ ˈstōn How to pronounce stone (audio) \

Medical Definition of stone

2 plural usually stone : any of various units of weight especially : an official British unit equal to 14 pounds (6.3 kilograms)

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on stone

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for stone

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with stone

Spanish Central: Translation of stone

Nglish: Translation of stone for Spanish Speakers

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

Comments on stone

What made you want to look up stone? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


a calculated move

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Confusing Words—A Quiz

  • alice with tweedle dee and tweedle dum
  • I invented a brand new toaster robot and ______ it "Sir Toasts-a-Lot."
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

Dictionary Devil

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!