the place of a person or thing as occupied by a successor or substitute: The nephew of the queen came in her stead.
Obsolete. a place or locality.
verb (used with object)
to be of service, advantage, or avail to.
stand in good stead, to be useful to, especially in a critical situation: Your experience will stand you in good stead.

before 900; (noun) Middle English, Old English stede; cognate with German Stätte place; akin to German Stadt, Old Norse stathr, Gothic staths, Greek stásis (see stasis); (v.) Middle English steden, derivative of the noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source Link To stead
World English Dictionary
stead (stɛd)
1.  rare (preceded by in) the place, function, or position that should be taken by another: to come in someone's stead
2.  stand someone in good stead to be useful or of good service to (someone)
3.  archaic (tr) to help or benefit
[Old English stede; related to Old Norse stathr place, Old High German stat place, Latin statiō a standing, statim immediately]

Stead (stɛd)
Christina (Ellen). 1902--83, Australian novelist. Her works include Seven Poor Men of Sydney (1934), The Man who Loved Children (1940), and Cotters' England (1966)

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
Cite This Source
Word Origin & History

O.E. stede "place, position, standing, delay," related to standan "to stand," from P.Gmc. *stadiz (cf. O.S. stedi, O.N. staðr, Swed. stad, Du. stede "place," O.H.G. stat, Ger. Stadt "town," Goth. staþs "place"), from PIE *stetis-, from base *ste-/*sta- "to stand" (see
stet). Now chiefly in compounds or phrases. Steadfast is from O.E. stedefæst "secure in position," from stede + fæst "firmly fixed" (see fast).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
American Heritage
Idioms & Phrases


see in someone's shoes (stead); stand in good stead. Also see under instead.

The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer.
Copyright © 1997. Published by Houghton Mifflin.
Cite This Source
Example sentences
Stead has taken up the role of an agricultural benefactor.
They have had to be, and it may stand them in good stead now.
Move over silicone implants, here comes the real thing in your stead.
Both positions should serve him in good stead in his new job.
Copyright © 2014, LLC. All rights reserved.
  • Please Login or Sign Up to use the Recent Searches feature