Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun A narrow strip of wood forming part of the sides of a barrel, tub, or similar structure.
  • noun One of the wooden planks in a stave wall.
  • noun A rung of a ladder or chair.
  • noun A staff or cudgel.
  • noun A set of verses; a stanza.
  • transitive verb To crush or smash inward, often by making a hole. Often used with in:

from The Century Dictionary.

  • To break in a stave or staves of; knock a hole in; break; burst: as, the boat is stove.
  • To cause or suffer to be lost by breaking the cask; hence, to spill; pour out.
  • To furnish with staves or rundles.
  • To make firm by compression; shorten or compact, as a heated rod or bar by endwise blows, or as lead in the socket-joints of pipes.
  • To go or rush along recklessly or regardless of everything, as one in a rage; work energetically; drive.
  • noun A pole or piece of wood of some length; a Staff.
  • noun A stanza; a verse; a metrical division.
  • noun Specifically, same as staff, 9.
  • noun The porter-bar used to start and hold massive forgings which are undergoing treatment in a furnace or under a hammer or press. The part to be made is welded to the stave or porter-bar, and when completed the latter is cut off.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • intransitive verb To burst in pieces by striking against something; to dash into fragments.
  • noun One of a number of narrow strips of wood, or narrow iron plates, placed edge to edge to form the sides, covering, or lining of a vessel or structure; esp., one of the strips which form the sides of a cask, a pail, etc.
  • noun One of the cylindrical bars of a lantern wheel; one of the bars or rounds of a rack, a ladder, etc.
  • noun A metrical portion; a stanza; a staff.
  • noun (Mus.), obsolete The five horizontal and parallel lines on and between which musical notes are written or printed; the staff{7}.
  • noun a machine for dressing the edges of staves.
  • transitive verb To break in a stave or the staves of; to break a hole in; to burst; -- often with in
  • transitive verb To push, as with a staff; -- with off.
  • transitive verb To delay by force or craft; to drive away; -- usually with off.
  • transitive verb To suffer, or cause, to be lost by breaking the cask.
  • transitive verb To furnish with staves or rundles.
  • transitive verb To render impervious or solid by driving with a calking iron.
  • transitive verb in bear baiting, (to stave) to interpose with the staff, doubtless to stop the bear; (to tail) to hold back the dog by the tail.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun One of a number of narrow strips of wood, or narrow iron plates, placed edge to edge to form the sides, covering, or lining of a vessel or structure; esp., one of the strips which form the sides of a cask, a pail, etc.
  • noun One of the bars or rounds of a rack, rungs of a ladder, etc; one of the cylindrical bars of a lantern wheel
  • noun poetry A metrical portion; a stanza; a staff.
  • noun The five horizontal and parallel lines on and between which musical notes are written or pointed; the staff.
  • noun A staff or walking stick
  • verb transitive To break in the staves of; to break a hole in; to burst. Often with in.
  • verb transitive To push, as with a staff. With off.
  • verb transitive To delay by force; to drive away. Often with off.
  • verb intransitive To burst in pieces by striking against something.
  • verb intransitive To walk or move rapidly.

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

  • verb burst or force (a hole) into something
  • noun a crosspiece between the legs of a chair
  • noun one of several thin slats of wood forming the sides of a barrel or bucket
  • verb furnish with staves
  • noun (music) the system of five horizontal lines on which the musical notes are written

Etymologies

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

[Back-formation from staves, pl. of staff.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

Back-formation from staves, the plural of staff.

Examples

  • Their poems were graven upon small staves or rods, one line upon each face of the rod; and the Old English word "stave," as applied to a stanza, is probably a relic of the practice, which, in the early ages, prevailed in the West.

    Forty Centuries of Ink

  • They've got to get a proposal together with, like, sheet music and all, and with the music constructed in GarageBand by yours truly, who barely knows a stave from a semi-quaver, getting that together is ... a challenge, as they say.

    Archive 2009-09-01

  • They've got to get a proposal together with, like, sheet music and all, and with the music constructed in GarageBand by yours truly, who barely knows a stave from a semi-quaver, getting that together is ... a challenge, as they say.

    For a Lark

  • If you're buying a stave from a dealer, you'll save on drying time (4-6 weeks if cutting your own).

    Make a Homemade (and Deadly) Bow in Five Easy Steps

  • He was singing a stave from the "Enniskillen Dragoon" when I came up with him

    Roughing It in the Bush

  • Origin: A stave is a stick of wood, from the plural of staff, staves.

    Origin of Familiar Phrases

  • Each chapter is called a stave, or stanza of the carol.

    Ontario Teachers' Manuals: Literature

  • So I would start interspersing other books in between the chapters to kind of stave off that terrible moment when the book ended.

    The Joys Of Reading Many Books At Once

  • So I would start interspersing other books in between the chapters to kind of stave off that terrible moment when the book ended.

    The Joys Of Reading Many Books At Once

  • The inner form has one wedge-shaped loose stave which is withdrawn after the concrete has set for about 20 hours, thus collapsing the inner form and allowing it to be removed.

    Concrete Construction Methods and Costs

Comments

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  • Penny Arcade (9/17/03):

    "The judge says we can't use swords, magic, or items in this battle. He recommended staves instead. I don't know what those are."

    December 3, 2007