\ ˈstō-nē How to pronounce stony (audio) \
variants: or less commonly stoney
stonier; stoniest

Definition of stony

1 : abounding in or having the nature of stone : rocky
2a : insensitive to pity or human feeling : obdurate
b : manifesting no movement or reaction : dumb, expressionless
c : fearfully gripping : petrifying
3 archaic : consisting of or made of stones
4 British : stone broke

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Other Words from stony

stonily \ ˈstō-​nə-​lē How to pronounce stonily (audio) \ adverb
stoniness \ ˈstō-​nē-​nəs How to pronounce stoniness (audio) \ noun

Examples of stony in a Sentence

She gave him a stony stare. the judge's stony demeanor didn't raise the defendant's hopes for a more lenient sentence
Recent Examples on the Web Disgraced San Francisco Public Works director Mohammed Nuru and restaurateur Nick Bovis stood stony faced alongside their respective attorneys Thursday during a brief court hearing about the status of their $2 million bonds. Dominic Fracassa,, "SF corruption case: Nuru and Bovis appear in court as employment investigation takes a turn," 6 Feb. 2020 These stony shelters are called by many different names, like rock shelters, rockhouses, crepuscular caves and bluff shelters. Tim Macwelch, Outdoor Life, "9 Natural Shelters that will Save Your Life," 16 Jan. 2020 The almost monastic stillness is broken by the rush of waves rolling onto the stony beach. Trish Lorenz, Condé Nast Traveler, "How to Explore the Azores, Island by Island," 19 Nov. 2019 The stony graveyard is dotted with crosses marking young people. Catherine Porter, New York Times, "Drawn From Poverty: Art Was Supposed to Save Canada’s Inuit. It Hasn’t.," 20 Oct. 2019 Mader Riesling 2017 Alsace, France, $22 Mader produces consistently good riesling, and the 2017 is a delight, with ripe apricot and peach flavors and some stony mineral structure. Dave Mcintyre, Washington Post, "Snag this juicy, French white wine for just $9," 27 Sep. 2019 Harvesting on Cinque Terre’s stony cliff sides takes extreme patience and precision. Nick Remsen, Vogue, "5 Vineyard Experiences That Go Beyond Your Typical Tasting," 5 Oct. 2019 As 2018 was a warm, ripe vintage, this wine shows more tree fruit character and round, rich mouthfeel, rather than the slightly aggressive or stony mineral profile sauvignon blanc has in more classic years. Dave Mcintyre, Washington Post, "This Rhone Valley red is a rare stunner at just $14," 13 Sep. 2019 Meteorites fall into a couple of categories, with stony meteorites the most common. Meg Jones, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "When a meteorite plunged into Lake Michigan, a team of scientists built a sled with magnets to find it," 4 Sep. 2019

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

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

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Time Traveler for stony

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for stony

Last Updated

16 Feb 2020

Cite this Entry

“Stony.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 19 Feb. 2020.

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More Definitions for stony


How to pronounce stony (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of stony

: full of stones
: made of stone or hard like stone
: showing no emotion or friendliness


\ ˈstō-nē How to pronounce stony (audio) \
stonier; stoniest

Kids Definition of stony

1 : full of stones stony soil
2 : hard as or like stone stony meteorites
3 : insensitive sense 1, unfeeling a stony stare

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More from Merriam-Webster on stony

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for stony

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with stony

Spanish Central: Translation of stony

Nglish: Translation of stony for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of stony for Arabic Speakers

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