stonewall

verb stone·wall \ ˈstōn-ˌwȯl \
Updated on: 16 Nov 2017

Definition of stonewall

intransitive verb
1 chiefly British :to engage in obstructive parliamentary debate or delaying tactics
2 :to be uncooperative, obstructive, or evasive
transitive verb
:to refuse to comply or cooperate with

stonewaller

noun

stonewall was our Word of the Day on 05/26/2014. Hear the podcast!

Examples of stonewall in a Sentence

  1. They stonewalled until they could come up with a response.

  2. They were just stonewalling for time.

  3. They're trying to stonewall the media.

  4. We're trying to get the information, but we're being stonewalled.

Recent Examples of stonewall from the Web

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

Did You Know?

The earliest English stonewalls were literal; they were walls made from stone. Because a stone wall can be difficult to surmount, English speakers began using stonewall figuratively for things or people who either were persistent and enduring or who presented an obstacle as formidable as a stone wall. (Those figurative senses earned American Confederate Civil War General Thomas "Stonewall" Jackson his nickname.) Then, in the late 1800s, cricket players began using stonewall as a verb in reference to a batter's defensive blocking of balls. Around the same time, stonewall found its way into political slang as a synonym of filibuster. There is also a chiefly British sense of "to engage in obstructive parliamentary debate or delaying tactics."

First Known Use of stonewall

1880


stone wall

noun

Definition of stone wall

1 :a fence made of stones; especially :one built of rough stones without mortar to enclose a field
2 :an immovable block or obstruction (as in public affairs)

Recent Examples of stone wall from the Web

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

First Known Use of stone wall

before 12th century


STONEWALL Defined for English Language Learners

stonewall

verb

Definition of stonewall for English Language Learners

  • : to refuse or fail to answer questions, to do what has been requested, etc., especially in order to delay or prevent something ( chiefly US )


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