Old English stan, used of common rocks, precious gems, concretions in the body, memorial stones, from Proto-Germanic *stainaz (cf. Old Norse steinn, Danish steen, Old High German and German stein, Gothic stains), from PIE *stai- "stone," also "to thicken, stiffen" (cf. Sanskrit styayate "curdles, becomes hard;" Avestan stay- "heap;" Greek stear "fat, tallow," stia, stion "pebble;" Old Church Slavonic stena "wall").
Slang sense of "testicle" is from mid-12c. The British measure of weight (usually equal to 14 pounds) is from late 14c., originally a specific stone. Stone's throw for "a short distance" is attested from 1580s. Stone Age is from 1864. To kill two birds with one stone is first attested 1650s.
intensifying adjective, 1935, first recorded in black slang, probably from earlier use in phrases like stone blind (late 14c., literally "blind as a stone"), stone deaf, etc., from stone (n.). Stone cold sober dates from 1937.
A piano accordion (1940s+)
Stones were commonly used for buildings, also as memorials of important events (Gen. 28:18; Josh. 24:26, 27; 1 Sam. 7:12, etc.). They were gathered out of cultivated fields (Isa. 5:2; comp. 2 Kings 3:19). This word is also used figuratively of believers (1 Pet. 2:4, 5), and of the Messiah (Ps. 118:22; Isa. 28:16; Matt. 21:42; Acts 4:11, etc.). In Dan. 2:45 it refers also to the Messiah. He is there described as "cut out of the mountain." (See ROCK.) A "heart of stone" denotes great insensibility (1 Sam. 25:37). Stones were set up to commemorate remarkable events, as by Jacob at Bethel (Gen. 28:18), at Padan-aram (35:4), and on the occasion of parting with Laban (31:45-47); by Joshua at the place on the banks of the Jordan where the people first "lodged" after crossing the river (Josh. 6:8), and also in "the midst of Jordan," where he erected another set of twelve stones (4:1-9); and by Samuel at "Ebenezer" (1 Sam. 7:12).