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



    BrE BrE//stɪk//
    ; NAmE NAmE//stɪk//
    Parts of a plane
    jump to other results
    from tree
  1. 1  [countable] a thin piece of wood that has fallen or been broken from a tree We collected dry sticks to start a fire. The boys were throwing sticks and stones at the dog. Her arms and legs were like sticks (= very thin).
  2. for walking
  3. 2  [countable] (especially British English) = walking stick The old lady leant on her stick as she talked. see also shooting stick, white stick
  4. in sport
  5. 3[countable] a long thin object that is used in some sports to hit or control the ball a hockey stick
  6. long thin piece
  7. 4  [countable] (often in compounds) a long thin piece of something a stick of dynamite carrot sticks (North American English) a stick of butter see also French stick
  8. 5[countable] (often in compounds) a thin piece of wood or plastic that you use for a particular purpose pieces of pineapple on sticks The men were carrying spades and measuring sticks. see also chopstick, cocktail stick, drumstick, matchstick, selfie stick, yardstick
  9. of glue, etc.
  10. 6[countable] a quantity of a substance, such as solid glue, that is sold in a small container with round ends and straight sides, and can be pushed further out of the container as it is used see also lipstick
  11. in plane/vehicle
  12. 7[countable] (informal, especially North American English) the control stick of a plane see also joystick See related entries: Parts of a plane
  13. 8[countable] (informal, especially North American English) a handle used to change the gears of a vehicle see also gear lever, stick shift
  14. for orchestra
  15. 9[countable] a baton, used by the person who conducts an orchestra
  16. criticism
  17. 10[uncountable] (British English, informal) criticism or severe words The referee got a lot of stick from the home fans.
  18. country areas
  19. 11the sticks [plural] (informal, usually disapproving) country areas, a long way from cities We live out in the sticks.
  20. person
  21. 12[countable] (old-fashioned, British English, informal) a person He's not such a bad old stick.
  22. There are many other compounds ending in stick. You will find them at their place in the alphabet.
    Word Originnoun Old English sticca ‘peg, stick, spoon’, of West Germanic origin; related to Dutch stek ‘cutting from a plant’ and German Stecken ‘staff, stick’.Extra examples Serve the prawns on cocktail sticks. The man had sticks of dynamite strapped to his chest. The savoury dips were served with sticks of carrot and celery. a stick of butterIdioms
    be (caught) in a cleft stick
    jump to other results
    to be in a difficult situation when any action you take will have bad results
    (informal) the use or threat of force or power The authorities used quiet persuasion instead of the big stick.
    the carrot and (the) stick (approach)
    jump to other results
    if you use the carrot and stick approach, you persuade somebody to try harder by offering them a reward if they do, or a punishment if they do not The emphasis is on the carrot of incentive rather than the stick of taxes.
    get the short end of the stick (North American English) (British English draw the short straw)
    jump to other results
    to be the person in a group who is chosen or forced to perform an unpleasant duty or task
    get (hold of) the wrong end of the stick
    jump to other results
    (British English, informal) to understand something in the wrong way
    a rod/stick to beat somebody with
    jump to other results
    a fact, an argument, etc. that is used in order to blame or punish somebody
    up sticks (British English) (North American English pull up stakes)
    jump to other results
    (informal) to suddenly move from your house and go to live somewhere else He upped sticks and went back to France.
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: stick