state·​ly | \ ˈstāt-lē How to pronounce stately (audio) \
statelier; stateliest

Definition of stately

1a : marked by lofty or imposing dignity
2 : impressive in size or proportions

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from stately

stateliness noun
stately adverb

Choose the Right Synonym for stately

grand, magnificent, imposing, stately, majestic, grandiose mean large and impressive. grand adds to greatness of size the implications of handsomeness and dignity. a grand staircase magnificent implies an impressive largeness proportionate to scale without sacrifice of dignity or good taste. magnificent paintings imposing implies great size and dignity but especially stresses impressiveness. an imposing edifice stately may suggest poised dignity, erectness of bearing, handsomeness of proportions, ceremonious deliberation of movement. the stately procession majestic combines the implications of imposing and stately and usually adds a suggestion of solemn grandeur. a majestic waterfall grandiose implies a size or scope exceeding ordinary experience grandiose hydroelectric projects but is most commonly applied derogatorily to inflated pretension or absurd exaggeration. grandiose schemes

Examples of stately in a Sentence

the governor watched with stately aloofness as his wife charmed the party guests a stately dowager in an evening gown
Recent Examples on the Web Held at Broughton Hall in the middle of Yorkshire, this stately home, owned by the same family for 1,000 years across 33 generations, oozes longevity, legacy and generational connection. Avivah Wittenberg-cox, Forbes, 16 Oct. 2021 In a stately old yellow house by the Slocum River in South Dartmouth, Massachusetts, a general store has been in operation for 228 years., 30 July 2021 And, essential for any visit to the area is wonderful 18th-century Castle Howard (film location of Brideshead Revisited and Bridgerton), a spacious stately home with vast gardens. Joanne Shurvell, Forbes, 21 Sep. 2021 And the nascent stately home industry was eager to cash in, relentlessly courting Americans and directing its marketing efforts towards America. Adrian Tinniswood, Time, 21 Sep. 2021 Quaint and charming, the houses range from modest ranches to stucco casitas with Spanish tile roofs to stately properties with columns and verandas that look like something out of the Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood. Katie Friel, Chron, 20 Sep. 2021 In the 1960s, blocks of once stately rowhouses along Linden Avenue were demolished in the name of slum clearance. Jacques Kelly,, 18 Sep. 2021 Nowhere is sprucer than the Pergamon Museum, the stately collection of antiquities and archeological treasures. Anthony Lan, The New Yorker, 17 Sep. 2021 Popular choices include the stately Coral aloe (A. striata), the Candelabra aloe (A. arborescens), the Fan aloe (A. plicatilis) and the curling rows of the Spiral aloe (A. polyphylla). Earl Nickel, San Francisco Chronicle, 17 Sep. 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'stately.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of stately

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More About stately

Time Traveler for stately

Time Traveler

The first known use of stately was in the 15th century

See more words from the same century

Dictionary Entries Near stately



stately home

See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for stately

Last Updated

19 Oct 2021

Cite this Entry

“Stately.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 25 Oct. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon
Seen & Heard
People are talking about

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for stately



English Language Learners Definition of stately

: very impressive in appearance, manner, or size


state·​ly | \ ˈstāt-lē How to pronounce stately (audio) \
statelier; stateliest

Kids Definition of stately

: impressive in size or dignity stately oaks stately homes

Other Words from stately

stateliness noun

More from Merriam-Webster on stately

Nglish: Translation of stately for Spanish Speakers


Test Your Vocabulary

Farm Idioms Quiz

  • cow coming home
  • What does 'poke' refer to in the expression 'pig in a poke'?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!