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stilted

[stil-tid] /ˈstɪl tɪd/
adjective
1.
stiffly dignified or formal, as speech or literary style; pompous.
2.
Architecture. (of an arch) resting on imposts treated in part as downward continuations of the arch.
Origin of stilted
1610-1620
1610-20; stilt + -ed3
Related forms
unstilted, adjective
Synonyms
1. wooden, mannered, stuffy, constrained.

stilt

[stilt] /stɪlt/
noun
1.
one of two poles, each with a support for the foot at some distance above the bottom end, enabling the wearer to walk with his or her feet above the ground.
2.
one of several posts supporting a structure built above the surface of land or water.
3.
Ceramics. a three-armed support for an object being fired.
4.
any of several white-and-black wading birds, especially Cladorhynchus leucocephalus and Himantopus himantopus, having long, bright pink legs and a long, slender black bill.
5.
British Dialect.
  1. a plow handle.
  2. a crutch.
verb (used with object)
6.
to raise on or as if on stilts.
Origin
1275-1325; Middle English stilte; cognate with Low German stilte pole, German Stelze
Related forms
stiltlike, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for stilted
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • The stiff, stilted words did not seem like Wolf, and the definite casting-off hurt her.

    The Beloved Woman Kathleen Norris
  • She was evidently infected by the stilted manner of her ridiculous lover.

    Scaramouche Rafael Sabatini
  • As she spoke she rose, and, with stilted courtesy, so did the two men.

    The Hills of Refuge Will N. Harben
  • The letter of congratulation must be natural, not stilted, and must be sincere.

  • stilted, raised, usually applied to an arch when its centre is above the top of the jambs from which it springs.

    Architecture Thomas Roger Smith
British Dictionary definitions for stilted

stilted

/ˈstɪltɪd/
adjective
1.
(of speech, writing, etc) formal, pompous, or bombastic
2.
not flowing continuously or naturally: stilted conversation
3.
(architect) (of an arch) having vertical piers between the impost and the springing
Derived Forms
stiltedly, adverb
stiltedness, noun

stilt

/stɪlt/
noun
1.
either of a pair of two long poles with footrests on which a person stands and walks, as used by circus clowns
2.
a long post or column that is used with others to support a building above ground level
3.
any of several shore birds of the genera Himantopus and Cladorhynchus, similar to the avocets but having a straight bill
verb
4.
(transitive) to raise or place on or as if on stilts
Word Origin
C14 (in the sense: crutch, handle of a plough): related to Low German stilte pole, Norwegian stilta
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 stilted

stilt

n.

early 14c., "a crutch," from Proto-Germanic *steltijon (cf. Middle Low German, Middle Dutch stelte "stilt," Old High German stelza "plow handle, crutch"), from PIE root *stel- "to put, stand" (see stall (n.1)). Application to "wooden poles for walking across marshy ground, etc." is from mid-15c. Meaning "one of the posts on which a building is raised from the ground" is first attested 1690s. Stilted in the figurative sense of "pompous, stuffy" is first recorded 1820.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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