Definition of stale adjective from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary



    BrE BrE//steɪl//
    ; NAmE NAmE//steɪl//
    Taste of food
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  1. 1(of food, especially bread and cake) no longer fresh and therefore unpleasant to eat See related entries: Taste of food
  2. 2(of air, smoke, etc.) no longer fresh; smelling unpleasant stale cigarette smoke stale sweat
  3. 3something that is stale has been said or done too many times before and is no longer interesting or exciting stale jokes Their marriage had gone stale.
  4. 4a person who is stale has done the same thing for too long and so is unable to do it well or produce any new ideas After ten years in the job, she felt stale and needed a change. The cast is changed regularly to stop the actors from getting stale.
  5. Word OriginMiddle English (describing beer in the sense ‘clear from long standing, strong’): probably from Anglo-Norman French and Old French, from estaler ‘to halt’; compare with the verb stall.Extra examples The atmosphere was stale with cigarette smoke. The room smelled musty and stale. This bread’s going stale. Of course I’ve heard. That’s stale news. The room smelt of stale sweat. The routine of married life had gone stale on them. There was one piece of stale chocolate cake left in the tin. What had seemed fresh and exciting at first was now stale and predictable. What made the work so stale and uninteresting?
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: stale