Definition of stymie
- stymied by red tape
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Progress on the project has been stymied by lack of money.
the raging blizzard stymied the rescuers' attempts to find the stranded mountain climbers
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Golf was being played in Scotland as early as the 15th century, but it wasn't until the 19th century that the sport really caught on in England and North America. It was also in the 19th century that the word stymie entered English as a noun referring to a golfing situation in which one player's ball lies between another ball and the hole on the putting green, thereby blocking the line of play. Later, stymie came to be used as a verb meaning "to bring into the position of, or impede by, a stymie." By the early 20th century, the verb was being applied in similarly vexing non-golf contexts.
First Known Use: 1902See Words from the same year
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to lessen the seriousness or strength of
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