from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A compartment for one domestic animal in a barn or shed.
  • n. A booth, cubicle, or stand used by a vendor, as at a market.
  • n. A small compartment: a shower stall.
  • n. An enclosed seat in the chancel of a church.
  • n. A pew in a church.
  • n. Chiefly British A seat in the front part of a theater.
  • n. A space marked off, as in a garage, for parking a motor vehicle.
  • n. A protective sheath for a finger or toe.
  • n. The sudden, unintended loss of power or effectiveness in an engine.
  • n. A condition in which an aircraft or airfoil experiences an interruption of airflow resulting in loss of lift and a tendency to drop.
  • transitive v. To put or lodge in a stall.
  • transitive v. To maintain in a stall for fattening: to stall cattle.
  • transitive v. To halt the motion or progress of; bring to a standstill.
  • transitive v. To cause (a motor or motor vehicle) accidentally to stop running.
  • transitive v. To cause (an aircraft) to go into a stall.
  • intransitive v. To live or be lodged in a stall. Used of an animal.
  • intransitive v. To stick fast in mud or snow.
  • intransitive v. To come to a standstill: Negotiations stalled.
  • intransitive v. To stop running as a result of mechanical failure: The car stalled on the freeway.
  • intransitive v. To lose forward flying speed, causing a stall. Used of an aircraft.
  • n. A ruse or tactic used to mislead or delay.
  • transitive v. To employ delaying tactics against: stall off creditors.
  • intransitive v. To employ delaying tactics: stalling for time.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A compartment for a single animal in a stable or cattle shed.
  • n. A small open-fronted shop, for example in a market.
  • n. A very small room used for a shower or a toilet.
  • n. A seat in a theatre close to and (about) level with the stage.
  • n. Loss of lift due to an airfoil's critical angle of attack being exceeded.
  • n. An Heathen altar, typically an indoor one, as contrasted with a more substantial outdoor harrow.
  • n. A seat in a church, especially one next to the chancel or choir, reserved for church officials and dignitaries.
  • n. A church office that entitles the incumbent to the use of a church stall.
  • n. A sheath to protect the finger.
  • v. To put (an animal etc) in a stall.
  • v. To come to a standstill.
  • v. To exceed the critical angle of attack, resulting in total loss of lift.
  • v. To live in, or as if in, a stall; to dwell.
  • v. To be stuck, as in mire or snow; to stick fast.
  • v. To be tired of eating, as cattle.
  • n. An action that is intended to cause or actually causes delay.
  • v. To employ delaying tactics against
  • v. To employ delaying tactics

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A stand; a station; a fixed spot; hence, the stand or place where a horse or an ox is kept and fed; the division of a stable, or the compartment, for one horse, ox, or other animal.
  • n. A stable; a place for cattle.
  • n. A small apartment or shed in which merchandise is exposed for sale.
  • n. A bench or table on which small articles of merchandise are exposed for sale.
  • n. A seat in the choir of a church, for one of the officiating clergy. It is inclosed, either wholly or partially, at the back and sides. The stalls are frequently very rich, with canopies and elaborate carving.
  • n. In the theater, a seat with arms or otherwise partly inclosed, as distinguished from the benches, sofas, etc.
  • n. The space left by excavation between pillars. See Post and stall, under Post.
  • n. A covering or sheath, as of leather, horn, of iron, for a finger or thumb; a cot.
  • intransitive v. To live in, or as in, a stall; to dwell.
  • intransitive v. To kennel, as dogs.
  • intransitive v. To be set, as in mire or snow; to stick fast.
  • intransitive v. To be tired of eating, as cattle.
  • transitive v. To put into a stall or stable; to keep in a stall or stalls.
  • transitive v. To fatten.
  • transitive v. To place in an office with the customary formalities; to install.
  • transitive v. To plunge into mire or snow so as not to be able to get on; to set; to fix.
  • transitive v. To forestall; to anticipate.
  • transitive v. To keep close; to keep secret.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To place; set; fix; install.
  • To place in an office with the customary formalities; induct into office; install.
  • To put into or keep in a stall or stable: as, to stall a horse.
  • To set fast in the mire; cause to stick in the mud; mire: as, to stall horses or a carriage.
  • To corner; bring to bay; secure.
  • To forestall.
  • To fatten; fatten with stall-feeding.
  • To postpone the payment of; forbear to claim payment for a time; allow to be paid by instalments.
  • To come to a stand; take up a position.
  • To live as in a stall; dwell; inhabit.
  • To stick or be set fast in the mire.
  • To kennel, as dogs.
  • To be tired of eating, as cattle.
  • n. A standing-place; station; position; place; room.
  • n. A standing-place for horses or cattle; a stable or cattle-shed; also, a division of a stable, cow-house, or cattle-shed, for the accommodation of one horse or ox; the stand or place in a stable where a horse or an ox is kept and fed: as, the stable contains eight stalls.
  • n. A booth, either in the open air or in a building, in which merchandise is exposed for sale, or in which some business or occupation is carried on: as, a butcher's stall.
  • n. A bench or table on which things are exposed for sale: as, a book-stall.
  • n. A seat or throne; a bench.
  • n. One of a range of fixed seats inclosed either wholly or in part at the back and sides, in the choir or chancel of a cathedral or church, and often surmounted by a richly sculptured canopy (see cut in preceding column): mostly appropriated for the clergy: as, a canon's stall; a dean's stall; hence, the position or dignity of canon.
  • n. In a theater, originally, a seat separated from others by arms or rails; now, usually, one of the seats in the front division of the parquet (sometimes called orchestra stalls); but the application of the term is variable.
  • n. In metallurgy, a chamber or compartment in which ores are roasted. See roast-stall.
  • n. A working-place in a coal-mine, varying in size and shape according to the system adopted. Also called chamber, room, breast, etc.
  • n. An ambush.
  • n. A stale; a stalking-horse; cover; mark; pretext.
  • n. A stool-pigeon; a thief's (especially a pickpocket's) assistant, whose rôle it is to divert the attention of the victim while the thief operates, to conceal the crime, assist the escape of the thief, make off with the booty, or perform similar offices. He is called fore-stall or back-stall according to his position before or behind the victim.
  • n. Same as cot, 4.See also finger-stall.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. a compartment in a stable where a single animal is confined and fed
  • v. cause an airplane to go into a stall
  • n. small individual study area in a library
  • n. a tactic used to mislead or delay
  • n. a booth where articles are displayed for sale
  • v. postpone doing what one should be doing
  • v. experience a stall in flight, of airplanes
  • n. seating in the forward part of the main level of a theater
  • n. small area set off by walls for special use
  • n. a malfunction in the flight of an aircraft in which there is a sudden loss of lift that results in a downward plunge
  • v. come to a stop
  • v. put into, or keep in, a stall
  • v. deliberately delay an event or action
  • v. cause an engine to stop


from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

Middle English stalle, from Old English steall, standing place, stable.
Alteration (influenced by stall1) of obsolete stale, pickpocket's accomplice, from Middle English, decoy, from Anglo-Norman estale, of Germanic origin; possibly akin to Old English stǣl, stathol, place, position; see staddle.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

Old English steall ("standing place, position"). Compare Dutch stal ("cattle shed"), German Stall ("cattle shed"), Old Norse stallr. Cognate with stand.



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  • Yeah, the article is about how he's about to do just that--his last appeal is almost done. (Apparently he asked the court to overturn his own guilty plea...?!)

    December 13, 2008

  • Larry Craig. If only he would just go away.

    December 13, 2008

  • 'Citing a Supreme Court precedent that would make Larry Craig's constituents proud, the Minnesota court ruled that the senator picked the wrong place to intrude upon "the right to be let alone." The appellate opinion declared that "the 'privacy interest in avoiding unwanted communication' is very strong in a stall in a public restroom." Craig spent his entire career trying to stop courts from finding a right to privacy in the Constitution, only to end up helping a court find one in the bathroom.'

    Ha! I love that last sentence... The whole article is here.

    December 12, 2008

  • You're not impressed by me

    But it's a funny way for you to tell me

    A whisper in a choir stall

    The man was talking about you simultaneously

    Frankly, I let my heavy eyelids flutter

    Because I have been sleeping badly lately

    I know you were historical from all the books I've read

    But I thought you could be bluffing

    And with this chance I've missed I feel remiss

    It's days and months before I see you again.

    (The model, by Belle and Sebastian)

    November 26, 2008