Definitions

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

  • noun The place, position, or function properly or customarily occupied by another.
  • noun Advantage; service; purpose.
  • transitive verb To be of advantage or service to; benefit.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • To place; put; set.
  • To place or put in a position of danger, difficulty, hardship, or the like; press; bestead.
  • With up: to replace; fill.
  • To avail; assist; benefit; serve; bo of service, advantage, or use to.
  • To stop; stay.
  • noun A place; place in general.
  • noun Place or room which another had or might have: preceded by in: as, David died, and Solomon reigned in his stead. Hence instead.
  • noun Space of time; while; moment.
  • noun The frame on which a bed is laid: now rarely used except in the compound bedstead.
  • noun A steading.
  • noun Position or situation of affairs; state; condition; plight.
  • noun Assistance; service; use; benefit; advantage; avail: usually in the phrases to stand in stead, to do stead (to render service).

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

  • transitive verb To help; to support; to benefit; to assist.
  • transitive verb obsolete To fill the place of.
  • noun Obs., except in composition. Place, or spot, in general.
  • noun Place or room which another had, has, or might have.
  • noun rare A frame on which a bed is laid; a bedstead.
  • noun Prov. Eng. & Scot. A farmhouse and offices.
  • noun in place of. See Instead.
  • noun to be of use or great advantage.

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

  • verb To help; to support; to benefit; to assist.
  • verb To fill place of.

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

  • noun the post or function properly or customarily occupied or served by another

Etymologies

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

[Middle English stede, from Old English; see stā- in Indo-European roots.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Middle English sted, stede, from Old English stede, from Proto-Germanic *stadiz, from Proto-Indo-European *stéh₂tis. Related to German Stadt, Gothic 𐍃𐍄𐌰𐌸𐍃 (staþs, "place"), Danish and Swedish stad, Dutch stad, Yiddish שטאָט (shtot).

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