stave (plural staves)
- 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; especially, one of the strips which form the sides of a cask, a pail, etc.
- One of the bars or rounds of a rack, rungs of a ladder, etc; one of the cylindrical bars of a lantern wheel
- (poetry) A metrical portion; a stanza; a staff.
- Let us chant a passing stave / In honour of that hero brave.
- (music) The five horizontal and parallel lines on and between which musical notes are written or pointed; the staff.
- A staff or walking stick.
- A sign, symbol or sigil, including rune or rune-like characters, used in Icelandic magic.
narrow strip, a part of a vessel
metrical portion; stanza; staff
parallel lines to write music on
- (transitive) To break in the staves of; to break a hole in; to burst. Often with in.
- to stave in a cask
- 1851, Herman Melville, Moby Dick, chapter 22
- Be careful in the hunt, ye mates. Don’t stave the boats needlessly, ye harpooneers; good white cedar plank is raised full three per cent within the year.
1914, Edgar Rice Burrows, The Mucker, HTML edition, The Gutenberg Project, published 2009:
- …for the jagged butt of the fallen mast was dashing against the ship's side with such vicious blows that it seemed but a matter of seconds ere it would stave a hole in her.
- (transitive) To push, as with a staff. With off.
- The condition of a servant staves him off to a distance.
- (transitive) To delay by force or craft; to drive away. Often with off.
- to stave off the execution of a project
- And answered with such craft as women use, / Guilty or guilties, to stave off a chance / That breaks upon them perilously.
- (intransitive) To burst in pieces by striking against something.
- (intransitive) To walk or move rapidly.
- To suffer, or cause to be lost by breaking the cask.
- All the wine in the city has been staved.
- To furnish with staves or rundles.
- (Can we find and add a quotation of Knolles to this entry?)
- To render impervious or solid by driving with a calking iron.
- to stave lead, or the joints of pipes into which lead has been run
break in the staves of; to break a hole in; to burst
push, as with a staff
delay by force; to drive away
burst in pieces by striking against something