stiffer

stiff

[stif]
adjective, stiffer, stiffest.
1.
rigid or firm; difficult or impossible to bend or flex: a stiff collar.
2.
not moving or working easily: The motor was a little stiff from the cold weather.
3.
(of a person or animal) not supple; moving with difficulty, as from cold, age, exhaustion, or injury.
4.
strong; forceful; powerful: stiff winds; The fighter threw a stiff right to his opponent's jaw.
5.
strong or potent to the taste or system, as a beverage or medicine: He was cold and wanted a good stiff drink.
6.
resolute; firm in purpose; unyielding; stubborn.
7.
stubbornly continued: a stiff battle.
8.
firm against any tendency to decrease, as stock-market prices.
9.
rigidly formal; cold and unfriendly, as people, manners, or proceedings.
10.
lacking ease and grace; awkward: a stiff style of writing.
11.
excessively regular or formal, as a design; not graceful in form or arrangement.
12.
laborious or difficult, as a task.
13.
severe or harsh, as a penalty or demand.
14.
excessive; unusually high or great: $50 is pretty stiff to pay for that.
15.
firm from tension; taut: to keep a stiff rein.
16.
relatively firm in consistency, as semisolid matter; thick: a stiff jelly; a stiff batter.
17.
dense or compact; not friable: stiff soil.
18.
Nautical. (of a vessel) having a high resistance to rolling; stable (opposed to crank ).
19.
Scot. and North England. sturdy, stout, or strongly built.
20.
Australian Slang. out of luck; unfortunate.
noun
21.
Slang.
a.
a dead body; corpse.
b.
a formal or priggish person.
c.
a poor tipper; tightwad.
d.
a drunk.
22.
Slang.
a.
a fellow: lucky stiff; poor stiff.
b.
a tramp; hobo.
c.
a laborer.
23.
Slang.
a.
a forged check.
b.
a promissory note or bill of exchange.
c.
a letter or note, especially if secret or smuggled.
24.
Slang. a contestant, especially a racehorse, sure to lose.
adverb
25.
in or to a firm or rigid state: The wet shirt was frozen stiff.
26.
completely, intensely, or extremely: I'm bored stiff by these lectures. We're scared stiff.
verb (used with object)
27.
Slang. to fail or refuse to tip (a waiter, porter, etc.).
28.
Slang. to cheat; gyp; do out of: The company stiffed me out of a week's pay.

Origin:
before 1000; Middle English (adj. and adv.); Old English stīf; cognate with German steif; akin to stifle1, steeve1

stiffish, adjective
stiffly, adverb
stiffness, noun
overstiff, adjective
overstiffly, adverb
overstiffness, noun
semistiff, adjective
semistiffly, adverb
semistiffness, noun
unstiff, adjective
unstiffly, adverb
unstiffness, noun


1. unbending, unyielding. See firm1. 6. unrelenting, resolved, obstinate, pertinacious. 9. reserved, constrained, starched, prim. 10. graceless, inelegant.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
stiff (stɪf)
 
adj
1.  not easily bent; rigid; inflexible
2.  not working or moving easily or smoothly: a stiff handle
3.  difficult to accept in its severity or harshness: a stiff punishment
4.  moving with pain or difficulty; not supple: a stiff neck
5.  difficult; arduous: a stiff climb
6.  unrelaxed or awkward; formal
7.  firmer than liquid in consistency; thick or viscous
8.  powerful; strong: a stiff breeze; a stiff drink
9.  excessively high: a stiff price
10.  nautical Compare tender (of a sailing vessel) relatively resistant to heeling or rolling
11.  lacking grace or attractiveness
12.  stubborn or stubbornly maintained: a stiff fight
13.  obsolete tightly stretched; taut
14.  slang chiefly (Austral) unlucky
15.  slang intoxicated
16.  stiff upper lip See lip
17.  informal stiff with amply provided with
 
n
18.  slang a corpse
19.  slang anything thought to be a loser or a failure; flop
 
adv
20.  completely or utterly: bored stiff; frozen stiff
 
vb
21.  slang (intr) to fail: the film stiffed
22.  slang chiefly (US) (tr) to cheat or swindle
23.  slang (tr) to kill
 
[Old English stīf; related to Old Norse stīfla to dam up, Middle Low German stīf stiff, Latin stīpēs wooden post, stīpāre to press]
 
'stiffish
 
adj
 
'stiffly
 
adv
 
'stiffness
 
n

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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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

stiff
O.E. stif "rigid, inflexible," from P.Gmc. *stifaz "inflexible" (cf. Du. stijf, O.H.G. stif, Ger. steif "stiff;" O.N. stifla "choke"), from PIE *stipos-, from root *steip- "press together, pack, cram" (cf. Skt. styayate "coagulates," stima "slow;" Gk. stia, stion "small stone," steibo "press together;"
L. stipare "pack down, press," stipes "post, tree trunk;" Lith. stipti "stiffen," stiprus "strong;" O.C.S. stena "wall"). Of battles and competitions, from mid-13c.; of liquor, from 1813. To keep a stiff upper lip is attested from 1815.

stiff
"corpse," 1859, slang, from stiff (adj.) which had been associated with notion of rigor mortis since c.1200. Meaning "working man" first recorded 1930, from earlier gen. sense of "contemptible person" (1882). Slang meaning "something or someone bound to lose" is 1890 (originally
of racehorses), from notion of "corpse."

stiff
"fail to tip," 1939, originally among restaurant and hotel workers, probably from stiff (n.) in slang sense of "corpse" (corpses don't tip well, either). Extended by 1950 to "cheat."
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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