stumbling block

noun
stum·​bling block | \ ˈstəm-bliŋ- How to pronounce stumbling block (audio) \

Definition of stumbling block

1 : an obstacle to progress
2 : an impediment to belief or understanding : perplexity

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Examples of stumbling block in a Sentence

Lack of funds is a major stumbling block to the project. My plans hit a stumbling block.

Recent Examples on the Web

Both are potential stumbling blocks that could stall any U.S. drawdown. Scott Peterson, The Christian Science Monitor, "Talking in Qatar, bombing in Kabul. How to explain the Taliban?," 9 Aug. 2019 For the past few months, the stumbling block for the proposal has been making the building fit in aesthetically with neighboring buildings of Somerset Square, a development built in the 1980s. Peter Marteka, courant.com, "Marriott AC Hotel approved as Glastonbury’s third hotel," 7 Aug. 2019 But other potential stumbling blocks remain, including the creation of a new telephone service tax to fund 911 operations. John Myers, latimes.com, "California lawmakers approve a state budget blueprint, but negotiations continue," 13 June 2019 Perhaps the biggest stumbling block is that there have been serious problems with getting pure RNA to replicate itself sustainably in the laboratory. Quanta Magazine, "Origin-of-Life Study Points to Chemical Chimeras, Not RNA," 16 Sep. 2019 One stumbling block was that any purchaser would need to invest heavily to connect the campus to city utilities. Scott Mcfetridge, The Seattle Times, "Huge ghost town next door clouds Iowa city’s future," 30 Mar. 2019 But finding agreement about how, and what to do beyond that, is proving to be a stumbling block. Los Angeles Times, "Newsletter: The fight over fur," 28 Aug. 2019 However, the player's wages are proving a stumbling block as Nuno and the Wanderers hierarchy look to finalise a deal, with the club unable to sign new recruits after 5pm. SI.com, "Wolves Facing Uphill Battle to Sign Franck Kessie From AC Milan Despite Agreeing Fee," 8 Aug. 2019 Some 16 months after Mr Ross ordered the Census Bureau to add the question, how could the government provide the courts with a new rationale that avoids this stumbling block? S.m. | New York, The Economist, "The Trump administration scrambles to add citizenship to the census," 9 July 2019

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

1588, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for stumbling block

Last Updated

10 Oct 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for stumbling block

The first known use of stumbling block was in 1588

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More Definitions for stumbling block

stumbling block

noun

English Language Learners Definition of stumbling block

: something that stops you from doing what you want to do

More from Merriam-Webster on stumbling block

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with stumbling block

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for stumbling block

Spanish Central: Translation of stumbling block

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to wander slowly or to speak indistinctly

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