\ˈstō \
stowed; stowing; stows

Definition of stow 

(Entry 1 of 3)

transitive verb

1 : house, lodge

2a : to put away for future use : store

b obsolete : to lock up for safekeeping : confine

3a : to dispose in an orderly fashion : arrange, pack

b : load

4 slang : to put aside : stop

5a archaic : crowd

b : to eat or drink up usually used with away stowed away a huge dinner


biographical name
\ˈstō \

Definition of Stow (Entry 2 of 3)

John 1525–1605 English historian and antiquarian


geographical name
\ˈstō \

Definition of Stow (Entry 3 of 3)

city in northeastern Ohio northeast of Akron population 34,837

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Synonyms for stow

Synonyms: Verb

keep, put up, reposit, store

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Examples of stow in a Sentence


He stowed his gear in a locker. Luggage may be stowed under the seat.

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

On Monday, a French bulldog puppy named Kokito suffocated to death in an overhead bin, after a flight attendant insisted the owner stow the dog there for a three-hour flight from Houston to New York. The Washington Post,, "United flight had to be diverted because it accidentally had a dog onboard," 18 Mar. 2018 As if in revenge, Mabel stowed her cache of Dickinson papers in that camphorwood chest. Brenda Wineapple, WSJ, "‘After Emily’ Review: The Belles of Amherst," 25 Oct. 2018 The incident at Northwest came a day after Montgomery police arrested a teenager who allegedly stowed a loaded 9mm Glock handgun in his bookbag and brought it to Clarksburg High. Washington Post, "After Fla. shooting, schools tighten security, field threats and reassure parents," 17 Feb. 2018 Don't claim extra space in the bin for your coat until everyone has had a chance to stow a bag. Christopher Elliott, USA TODAY, "Battle for the overhead bin is as fierce as ever," 15 Apr. 2018 With two ample drink holders and a side stash pocket, the Xtra offered the most space to stow stuff like beer, my phone, and a magazine, all the better for having everything within arm’s reach and not leaving my seat. Joe Jackson, Outside Online, "Testing the Best Comfortable Camp Chairs," 30 Mar. 2018 Roof-rack crossbars are also available for stowing gear on top of the vehicle. G. Chambers Williams Iii, Houston Chronicle, "Toyota Sienna gets some upgrades for 2018, including new front end," 7 July 2018 Instead of wedging pets under seats in a main cabin, or stowing them in cargo, New Pet Airways plans to go ahead and give them the whole plane. Rachel Rabkin Peachman, Condé Nast Traveler, "How to Travel Safely With Pets," 25 May 2018 An announcer precedes each set with a firm but polite admonition to fans to stow their cellphones and fully immerse themselves in the musical moment. Randy Lewis,, "The American ideal in music for July 4? Think Preservation Hall in New Orleans," 4 July 2018

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


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for stow


Middle English, to place, from stowe place, from Old English stōw; akin to Old Frisian stō place, Greek stylos pillar — more at steer

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Statistics for stow

Last Updated

5 Dec 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for stow

The first known use of stow was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for stow



English Language Learners Definition of stow

: to put (something that is not being used) in a place where it is available, where it can be kept safely, etc.


\ˈstō \
stowed; stowing

Kids Definition of stow

1 : to put away : store He stowed his belongings in the closet.

2 : load entry 2 sense 1 The ship was stowed before the voyage.

stow away

: to hide on a vehicle (as a ship) in order to travel without paying or being seen

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More from Merriam-Webster on stow

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with stow

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for stow

Spanish Central: Translation of stow

Nglish: Translation of stow for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of stow for Arabic Speakers

Comments on stow

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


a nest or breeding place

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