noun, often attributive
stub·​ble | \ ˈstə-bəl How to pronounce stubble (audio) \

Definition of stubble

1 : the basal part of herbaceous plants and especially cereal grasses remaining attached to the soil after harvest
2 : a rough surface or growth resembling stubble especially : a short growth of beard

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Other Words from stubble

stubbled \ ˈstə-​bəld How to pronounce stubbled (audio) \ adjective
stubbly \ ˈstə-​b(ə-​)lē How to pronounce stubbly (audio) \ adjective

Examples of stubble in a Sentence

He ran his hand over his stubble.

Recent Examples on the Web

The sheen on his forehead and the mottling of youthful stubble show off a precocious mastery of realist oil painting. Samuel Reilly, 1843, "Enigmatic and erotic: the art of Félix Vallotton," 3 July 2019 Rinse Your Razor After a few strokes, your razor will be filled with both shaving cream and stubble. Deanna Pai, Glamour, "How to Shave Your Legs Perfectly," 30 June 2019 But our eyes are again drawn to the beard, in profile, beaming proudly, as if the stubble is imbued with indomitable freedom and justice: Marvel The beard, like Cap himself, only appears in Infinity War for six minutes and 45 seconds. Alex Abad-santos, Vox, "The enduring legacy and fantasy of Captain America’s beard, explained," 18 June 2019 As anyone who's ever held a razor knows, stubble will quickly return — sometimes within a matter of hours. Kayleigh Donahue, Allure, "Allure's Guide to Hair Removal From Your Brows to Your Bikini Line," 6 June 2018 Not a beard, not five o'clock shadow, but carefully groomed stubble that's always the same exact length. Frank Scheck, The Hollywood Reporter, "'I Can Only Imagine': Film Review," 16 Mar. 2018 People sealed the deal as god intended, with Elba on the cover wearing a chunky knit cardigan and showcasing his resplendent salt-and-pepper stubble. Michelle Ruiz, Vogue, "Idris Elba Is (Finally) People’s Sexiest Man Alive," 6 Nov. 2018 For me, my inflammation began to subside five days post-treatment, just as the tiniest prickle of stubble started growing back on my upper lip. Jessica Defino, Marie Claire, "I Got My Face Shaved With a Scalpel in the Name of Smooth Skin," 11 Sep. 2018 Even with stubble on his chin and lips, Machado’s face looked boyish. Ronald Blum, The Seattle Times, "Manny the Masher, Manny the Miscreant & Macho Manny," 23 Oct. 2018

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for stubble

Middle English stuble, from Anglo-French estuble, from Latin stupula stalk, straw, alteration of stipula — more at stipule

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Statistics for stubble

Last Updated

19 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for stubble

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

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More Definitions for stubble



English Language Learners Definition of stubble

: short hairs growing from the face of a man who has not shaved very recently
: the short ends of crops left in the ground after the crops have been cut down


stub·​ble | \ ˈstə-bəl How to pronounce stubble (audio) \

Kids Definition of stubble

1 : a short growth of beard
2 : the short ends of crops and especially cereal grasses remaining attached to the ground after harvest

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More from Merriam-Webster on stubble

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with stubble

Spanish Central: Translation of stubble

Nglish: Translation of stubble for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of stubble for Arabic Speakers

Comments on stubble

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


appealing forcibly to the mind or reason

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