Definition of stagger verb from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary

     

    stagger

     verb
    verb
    BrE BrE//ˈstæɡə(r)//
     
    ; NAmE NAmE//ˈstæɡər//
     
    Verb Forms present simple I / you / we / they stagger
    BrE BrE//ˈstæɡə(r)//
     
    ; NAmE NAmE//ˈstæɡər//
     
    he / she / it staggers
    BrE BrE//ˈstæɡəz//
     
    ; NAmE NAmE//ˈstæɡərz//
     
    past simple staggered
    BrE BrE//ˈstæɡəd//
     
    ; NAmE NAmE//ˈstæɡərd//
     
    past participle staggered
    BrE BrE//ˈstæɡəd//
     
    ; NAmE NAmE//ˈstæɡərd//
     
    -ing form staggering
    BrE BrE//ˈstæɡərɪŋ//
     
    ; NAmE NAmE//ˈstæɡərɪŋ//
     
    Surprise
     
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  1. 1[intransitive, transitive] to walk with weak unsteady steps, as if you are about to fall synonym totter (+ adv./prep.) The injured woman staggered to her feet. He staggered home, drunk. We seem to stagger from one crisis to the next. (figurative) The company is staggering under the weight of a £10m debt. stagger something I managed to stagger the last few steps.
  2. 2[transitive] to shock or surprise somebody very much synonym amaze stagger somebody Her remarks staggered me. it staggers somebody that… It staggers me that the government is doing nothing about it. See related entries: Surprise
  3. 3[transitive] stagger something to arrange for events that would normally happen at the same time to start or happen at different times There were so many runners that they had to stagger the start.
  4. Word Origin late Middle English (as a verb): alteration of dialect stacker, from Old Norse stakra, frequentative of staka ‘push, stagger’.Extra examples She staggered blindly off into the darkness. She staggered to her feet and tottered unsteadily across the room. He was staggering, as if he was drunk. I managed to stagger to my feet. It staggers me that the government is doing nothing about this situation. She staggered over to him, swaying slightly. The injured woman staggered to the side of the road. The inspectors were staggered at the level of incompetence among senior staff. The man staggered around the square before collapsing.

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