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[stip-yool] /ˈstɪp yul/
noun, Botany.
one of a pair of lateral appendages, often leaflike, at the base of a leaf petiole in many plants.
Origin of stipule
1785-95; < Latin stipula stalk, noun use of feminine of *stipulus firm (recorded in LL); akin to stipes
Related forms
stipular, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for stipules
Historical Examples
  • The leaves are bigger, tougher, and the appendages on either side of the stalk (which botanists call the stipules) more developed.

    Tropic Days E. J. Banfield
  • Most Willows show the stipules on the young luxuriant growths.

  • The stipules at the base of the long foot-stalk are small or altogether wanting.

  • Even if the stipules have dropped off, the small scars remain.

  • Its stipules are large, narrow-oval in form, with an arrow-shaped base.

    Field and Woodland Plants William S. Furneaux
  • The presence and character of the stipules should always be noted.

    Field and Woodland Plants William S. Furneaux
  • The stipules are always free from the leafstalk and attached to the twig at small spots just below the leafstalk.

  • The leaves are simple, cordate, opposite to each other, and furnished with stipules.

    Botany for Ladies Jane Loudon
  • The leaves are pinnate, consisting generally of nine leaflets, and each pair of leaflets is furnished with two stipules.

    Botany for Ladies Jane Loudon
  • I may here be asked what are stipules, and in what do they differ from leaves?

    Botany for Ladies Jane Loudon
British Dictionary definitions for stipules


a small paired usually leaflike outgrowth occurring at the base of a leaf or its stalk
Derived Forms
stipular (ˈstɪpjʊlə) adjective
Word Origin
C18: from Latin; see stipe, stipes
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 stipules



"small appendage at the base of the petiole of a leaf," 1793, from French stipule, from Latin stipula "stalk (of hay), straw."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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stipules in Science
One of the usually small, paired parts resembling leaves at the base of a leafstalk in certain plants, such as roses and beans.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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