Definition of staple noun from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary



    BrE BrE//ˈsteɪpl//
    ; NAmE NAmE//ˈsteɪpl//
    Diet, In the office, Crops
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  1. 1a small piece of wire that is used in a device called a stapler and is pushed through pieces of paper and bent over at the ends in order to fasten the pieces of paper together See related entries: In the office
  2. 2a small piece of metal in the shape of a U that is hit into wooden surfaces using a hammer, used especially for holding electrical wires in place
  3. 3a basic type of food that is used a lot Aid workers helped distribute corn, milk and other staples. Wordfinderblight, cereal, crop, genetically modified, grain, harvest, monoculture, organic, staple, yield See related entries: Diet, Crops
  4. 4something that is produced by a country and is important for its economy Rubber became the staple of the Malayan economy.
  5. 5staple (of something) a large or important part of something Royal gossip is a staple of the tabloid press.
  6. Word Originnoun senses 1 to 2 Old English stapol, of Germanic origin; related to Dutch stapel ‘pillar’ (a sense reflected in English in early use). noun senses 3 to 5 Middle English (originally referring to a centre of trade): from Old French estaple ‘market’, from Middle Low German, Middle Dutch stapel ‘pillar, emporium’; related to the verb staple.
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: staple