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[steyt-lee] /ˈsteɪt li/
adjective, statelier, stateliest.
majestic; imposing in magnificence, elegance, etc.:
a stately home.
in a stately manner.
Origin of stately
1350-1400; Middle English statly. See state, -ly
Related forms
stateliness, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for stately
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • It is full of poetry, and of idyllic charm with all its stately solemnity.

    Luca Signorelli Maud Cruttwell
  • Over the octagonal window, too, such draperies fell in stately lines.

    Within the Law Marvin Dana
  • The maiden fair and stately / gave question how the same might be.

  • Adv.: wsa fengel geatolc gengde, passed on in a stately manner, 1402.

    Beowulf Unknown
  • On one side is Hans Sachs's modest shoemaker's shop, on the other the entrance to Pogner's stately dwelling.

British Dictionary definitions for stately


adjective -lier, -liest
characterized by a graceful, dignified, and imposing appearance or manner
in a stately manner
Derived Forms
stateliness, noun
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for stately

"noble, splendid," late 14c., from state (n.1) in a sense of "costly and imposing display" (such as benefits a person of rank and wealth), early 14c.; a sense also preserved in the phrase to lie in state "to be ceremoniously exposed to view before interment" (1705). Hence also stateroom.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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