Awed by his power and his sternness, the parents yielded her to his will.
The sternness of age and the austerity of censoriousness are now silent.
Just then, up came my father, with a sternness in his looks that made me tremble.
As they rested upon her some of the sternness seemed to fade from their glance.
His Lie still, you rascal, or Ill make you, voiced in its sternness an even deeper sentiment than he had for Zaidee.
"That remains to be seen," Colonel John replied, a note of sternness in his voice.
There was a sternness in her grandmother's voice and face which startled the girl.
Afterward this sternness seemed criminal; for my mind was made up.
This little relaxation of sternness had a good effect upon the queen.
It had dreaminess in it, intense attention, and something like sternness.
Old English styrne "severe, strict," from Proto-Germanic *sternijaz (cf. Middle High German sterre, German starr "stiff," störrig "obstinate;" Gothic andstaurran "to be stiff;" Old Norse stara; Old English starian "to look or gaze upon"), from PIE root *ster-, *star- "be rigid" (see sterile).
c.1300, "hind part of a ship, steering gear of a ship," probably from Old Norse stjorn "a steering," related to styra "to guide" (see steer (v.)). Or the word may come from Old Frisian stiarne "rudder," which is also related to steer (v.).