Stay - definition, pronunciation, transcription

Amer.  |steɪ|  American pronunciation of the word stay
Brit.  |steɪ|  British pronunciation of the word stay


- continuing or remaining in a place or state
they had a nice stay in Paris
a lengthy hospital stay
a four-month stay in bankruptcy court
- the state of inactivity following an interruption (syn: arrest, check, halt, hitch, stop, stoppage)
the momentary stay enabled him to escape the blow
- a judicial order forbidding some action until an event occurs or the order is lifted
the Supreme Court has the power to stay an injunction pending an appeal to the whole Court
- a thin strip of metal or bone that is used to stiffen a garment (e.g. a corset)
- (nautical) brace consisting of a heavy rope or wire cable used as a support for a mast or spar


- stay the same; remain in a certain state (syn: remain, rest)
stay alone
- stay put (in a certain place) (syn: stick, stick around)
We are staying in Detroit; we are not moving to Cincinnati
- dwell (syn: abide, bide)
You can stay with me while you are in town
stay a bit longer--the day is still young
- continue in a place, position, or situation (syn: continue, remain, stay on)
After graduation, she stayed on in Cambridge as a student adviser
- remain behind
I had to stay at home and watch the children
- stop or halt (syn: delay, detain)
Please stay the bloodshed!
- stay behind (syn: persist, remain)
The smell stayed in the room
- hang on during a trial of endurance (syn: outride, ride out)
- stop a judicial process
The judge stayed the execution order
- fasten with stays
- overcome or allay (syn: appease, quell)

Extra examples

I shall make a week's stay there.

I didn't think the boy would stay for two whole weeks without an invitation.

On the way home that phrase stayed with me.

Stay with me for a few more minutes and you'll see the point of the story.

He is the stay of his old age.

A tree was propped up by iron stays.

It is necessary to stay the old building with timber where it declines.

They stayed all afternoon, chatting.

I decided to stay home.

Isabel stayed for a year in Paris to study.

Stay in bed and drink plenty of liquids.

She stayed late to finish the report.

Stay right there! I'll be back in a minute.

Why don't you stay for supper?

Some of the students stayed after class to talk (=remained after others had gone).

Phrasal verbs

stay away  — stay clear of, avoid
stay on  — continue in a place, position, or situation
stay up  — not go to bed

Word forms

I/you/we/they: stay
he/she/it: stays
present participle: staying
past tense: stayed
past participle: stayed
singular: stay
plural: stays
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