Definition: Stone

From New World Encyclopedia
(Redirected from Stone)


From Middle English ston, stone, stan, from Old English stān, from Proto-West Germanic *stain, from Proto-Germanic *stainaz, from Proto-Indo-European *steyh₂- (to stiffen).


stone (countable and uncountable, plural stones or (as unit of mass) stone)

  1. (uncountable) A hard earthen substance that can form large rocks.
  2. A small piece of stone, a pebble.
  3. A gemstone, a jewel, especially a diamond.
  4. (Britain) A unit of mass equal to 14 pounds (approximately 6.3503 kilograms), formerly used for various commodities (wool, cheese, etc.), but now principally used for personal weight.
  5. (botany) The central part of some fruits, particularly drupes; consisting of the seed and a hard endocarp layer.
  6. (medicine) A hard, stone-like deposit.
  7. (board games) A playing piece made of any hard material, used in various board games such as backgammon and go.
  8. A dull light grey or beige color, like that of some stones.
  9. (curling) A 42-pound, precisely shaped piece of granite with a handle attached, which is bowled down the ice.
  10. A monument to the dead; a gravestone or tombstone.

Usage notes

All countable senses use the regular plural stones except the British unit of mass, which uses the invariant plural stone.


stone (third-person singular simple present stones, present participle stoning, simple past and past participle stoned)

  1. (transitive) To pelt with stones, especially to kill by pelting with stones.
    She was stoned to death after they found her.
  2. (transitive) To wall with stones.
  3. (transitive) To remove a stone from (fruit etc.).
  4. (intransitive) To form a stone during growth, with reference to fruit etc.
  5. (transitive) To lap with an abrasive stone to remove surface irregularities.


stone (not comparable)

  1. Constructed of stone.
    stone walls
  2. Having the appearance of stone.
    stone pot
  3. Of a dull light grey or beige color, like that of some stones.


stone (not comparable)

  1. As a stone (used with following adjective).
    My father is stone deaf. This soup is stone cold.

Derived terms


New World Encyclopedia writers and editors copied and adjusted this Wiktionary entry in accordance with NWE standards. This article abides by terms of the Creative Commons CC-by-sa 3.0 License (CC-by-sa), which may be used and disseminated with proper attribution. Credit for this article is due to both New World Encyclopedia contributors and the selfless volunteer contributors of the Wikimedia Foundation. To cite this article click here for a list acceptable citing formats.The history of earlier contributions at Wiktionary is accessible to researchers here: