stadium

[stey-dee-uhm]
noun, plural stadiums, stadia [stey-dee-uh] .
1.
a sports arena, usually oval or horseshoe-shaped, with tiers of seats for spectators.
2.
an ancient Greek course for foot races, typically semicircular, with tiers of seats for spectators.
3.
an ancient Greek and Roman unit of length, the Athenian unit being equal to about 607 feet (185 meters).
4.
a stage in a process or in the life of an organism.
5.
Entomology, stage ( def 11b ).

Origin:
1350–1400; Middle English < Latin < Greek stádion unit of distance, racecourse

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World English Dictionary
stadium (ˈsteɪdɪəm)
 
n , pl -diums, -dia
1.  a sports arena with tiered seats for spectators
2.  (in ancient Greece) a course for races, usually located between two hills providing natural slopes for tiers of seats
3.  an ancient Greek measure of length equivalent to about 607 feet or 184 metres
4.  (in many arthropods) the interval between two consecutive moultings
5.  obsolete a particular period or stage in the development of a disease
 
[C16: via Latin from Greek stadion, changed from spadion a racecourse, from spān to pull; also influenced by Greek stadios steady]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

stadium
late 14c., "a foot race, an ancient measure of length," from L. stadium "a measure of length, a race course" (commonly one-eighth of a Roman mile; translated in early English Bibles by furlong), from Gk. stadion "a measure of length, a running track," especially the track at Olympia, which was one stadium
in length. The Gk. word may literally mean "fixed standard of length" (from stadios "firm, fixed," from PIE base *sta- "to stand"), or it may be from spadion, from span "to draw up, pull," with form infl. by stadios. The meaning "running track," recorded in English from c.1600, was extended to mean in modern-day context "large, open oval structure with tiers of seats for viewing sporting events" (1834).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences
For an inside look at the ballpark, take a stadium tour.
While the football stadium and basketball arenas had been recently remodeled,
  the academic buildings showed their age.
It does have an interesting playhouse, a sports stadium complex, and some
  quirky restaurants.
Without technology, they can't even get into the stadium.
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