stow away


verb (used with object)
to put (cargo, provisions, etc.) in the places intended for them.
to put (sails, spars, gear, etc.) in the proper place or condition when not in use.
to put in a place or receptacle, as for storage or reserve; pack: He stowed the potatoes in our cellar.
to fill (a place or receptacle) by packing: to stow a carton with books.
to have or afford room for; hold.
Slang. to stop; break off: Stow it! Stow the talk!
to put away, as in a safe or convenient place (often followed by away ).
to lodge or quarter.
Verb phrases
stow away, to conceal oneself aboard a ship or other conveyance in order to obtain free transportation or to elude pursuers.

1300–50; Middle English stowen, Old English stōwigan to keep, hold back (literally, to place), derivative of stōw place; akin to Old Norse eldstō fireplace, Gothic stojan to judge (literally, to place)

stowable, adjective
restow, verb (used with object) Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
stow (stəʊ)
1.  (often foll by away) to pack or store
2.  to fill by packing
3.  nautical to pack or put away (cargo, sails and other gear, etc)
4.  to have enough room for
5.  slang (Brit) (usually imperative) to cease from: stow your noise!; stow it!
[Old English stōwian to keep, hold back, from stōw a place; related to Old High German stouwen to accuse, Gothic stōjan to judge, Old Slavonic staviti to place]

Stow (stəʊ)
John. 1525--1605, English antiquary, noted for his Survey of London and Westminster (1598; 1603)

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

c.1300, verb use of O.E. noun stow "a place" (common in place names) from P.Gmc. *stowijanan (cf. O.Fris. sto "place," M.L.G., M.Du., Du. stouwen "to stow," O.H.G. stouwen "to stop, check," Ger. stauen "to stow"), from PIE *stau-, from base *sta- "to stand" (cf. O.C.S. stavljo "to place," Lith. stoviu
"to stand;" see stet). The nautical sense of "put away to be stored, pack" (1555) was enforced by Du. stouwen "to cram, pack up close." Phrase stow away "conceal" is first found 1795; the noun stowaway is from 1850.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Idioms & Phrases

stow away

  1. Put aside or store something until needed, as in We generally stow away the lawn furniture in the toolshed. [Late 1700s]

  2. Hide oneself aboard ship or in a vehicle in order to get free transportation, as in The youngsters planned to stow away on a freighter but they never even got to the waterfront. This usage gave rise to the noun stowaway. [Mid-1800s]

  3. Greedily consume food or drink, as in Bob sure can stow away a lot in a short time. [Colloquial; mid-1800s]

The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer.
Copyright © 1997. Published by Houghton Mifflin.
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