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[stohn-def] /ˈstoʊnˈdɛf/
totally deaf.
Origin of stone-deaf
1830-40; stone + deaf Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for stone deaf
Historical Examples
  • I remember years ago Uncle Ike and I had a long discussion as to whether it were better to be stone blind or stone deaf.

  • She might have been stone deaf, and as dumb as the hearthstone bricks.

    Meadow Grass Alice Brown
  • There was no answer, but it occurred to me that it might be some old countryman who was stone deaf.

    Wandering Ghosts F. Marion Crawford
  • Are you stone deaf, that all their pretty speeches have been wasted on you?

    Heart Martin Farquhar Tupper
  • In the story above, the lights, too, were out; Max Diestricht was probably fast asleep—and he was stone deaf!

  • How do you manage to communicate with him if he is stone deaf?

    The Shrieking Pit Arthur J. Rees
  • And there was the Faun, stone deaf but observant, straining to understand what was taking place.

  • When I spoke to the old woman, she told me that she was stone deaf.

  • On one occasion a locum tenens, who officiated for a few weeks, was stone deaf.

    The Parish Clerk (1907) Peter Hampson Ditchfield
  • Had Hooker been stone deaf, the words would have had no more effect.

British Dictionary definitions for stone deaf


completely deaf
Usage note
Use of this word to refer to people with serious hearing difficulties is potentially very offensive: preferred form: profoundly deaf
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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Idioms and Phrases with stone deaf

stone deaf

Totally unable to hear, as in Poor Grandpa, in the last year he's become stone deaf. [ First half of 1800s ]
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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Difficulty index for stone-deaf

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