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

Examples of stubble in a Sentence

He ran his hand over his stubble.
Recent Examples on the Web Selecting a field with ample grass or stubble is the first step in getting the hide right, but that doesn’t automatically mean you will be hidden. Joe Weimer, Outdoor Life, "7 Surefire Ways to Ruin Your Spring Snow Goose Hunt," 22 Feb. 2021 Schick released The Stubble Eraser as part of the relaunch, a razor designed to shave up to seven days of stubble. Zoe Malin, NBC News, "New and Notable: Latest from Drybar, Schick, TRUFF and more," 8 Feb. 2021 Using shaving lotion or electric pre-shave lotion will get you closer to the skin, while diligent cleaning of the machine and keeping it fully charged to ensure maximum power when in use will help decrease the length of residual stubble. Jeremy Helligar, Popular Science, "Best electric shaver: Get a smooth shave with our picks," 18 Dec. 2020 The machines include a shredder that breaks down rice stubble and mulches it into the ground and a seed drill – called the Happy Seeder – that follows to sow wheat through the mulch. Rina Saeed Khan, The Christian Science Monitor, "In Pakistan, a 'Happy' solution to curb crop burning takes off," 8 Dec. 2020 Here’s how to turn a hunter-size duffel bag into just another lump of innocent stubble. T. Edward Nickens, Field & Stream, "6 Hacks For Hiding Your Layout Blind," 11 Oct. 2017 But putting a stop to crop stubble burning, which contributes as much as 40 percent of the city’s air pollution in winter months, isn’t as straightforward. Nilanjana Bhowmick, National Geographic, "In New Delhi, burning season makes the air even more dangerous. Can anything be done?," 13 Nov. 2020 Butler described the thief as White or Latino, in his late 30s to early 40s and graying, with gray stubble on his face. Teri Figueroa, San Diego Union-Tribune, "FBI seeking help to ID man who robbed Fallbrook bank," 3 Nov. 2020 Since the fields have been reaped, hunters can ride over the stubble, and can more easily see the fox, also other animals, which have come out to glean and can be caught for a thanksgiving banquet after the harvest. Paul Douglas, Star Tribune, "It's Good To Be Above Average Again," 1 Nov. 2020

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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Time Traveler for stubble

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for stubble

Cite this Entry

“Stubble.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 6 May. 2021.

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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

More from Merriam-Webster on stubble

Nglish: Translation of stubble for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of stubble for Arabic Speakers

Comments on stubble

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