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stick - definition and synonyms

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verb     stick pronunciation in British English
Word Forms
present tense
present participlesticking
past tensestuck
past participlestuck
  1. 1
    [transitive] to push something long and thin into or through something else
    stick something in/into/through/up etc something:

    He stuck the end of the post in the soft ground.

    She stuck her knitting needles into a ball of wool.

    a piece of cloth with a pin stuck through it

    1. a.
      [intransitive] if something sticks in, into, or through something else, its end remains pushed into or through it
      stick in/into/through:

      The knife missed its target and stuck in the door.

      Something sharp was sticking into my back.

      A broken spring was sticking through the mattress.

    2. b.
      [transitive] to push something onto something with a sharp point so that it is held there
      stick something on/onto something:

      She stuck the bread on the end of the toasting fork.

  2. 2
    [transitive] to fix one thing to another, especially using a sticky substance such as glue
    stick something on/in/into/under/to etc something:

    We stuck the articles in a scrapbook.

    I licked the stamp and stuck it on the envelope.

    She was sticking posters on her bedroom wall.

    stick something together:

    Can you stick the pieces of this vase back together?

    1. a.
      [intransitive] to become fixed to something, especially by means of a sticky substance
      stick to:

      The pasta has stuck to the bottom of the pan.

      He was boiling hot and his jacket was sticking to his back.

  3. 3
    [transitive] informal to put something somewhere quickly and without taking much care
    stick something in/on/around etc something:

    Ned stuck his hands in his pockets.

    Just stick the plates in the sink for now.

    He stuck his head around the kitchen door and said goodbye.

    stick something in the air:

    The dog rolled on its back and stuck its legs in the air.

    See also boot
  4. 4
    [intransitive] to become firmly fixed in one position, and therefore difficult or impossible to move

    The door is sticking, so just give it a good push.

    stick in/under/at etc:

    The wheels had stuck in the mud.

  5. 5
    [transitive] British informal to continue to the end of a difficult or unpleasant situation

    I don’t know how she’s stuck that job this long.

  6. 6
    [intransitive] if a new name for someone or something sticks, it becomes accepted and used by everyone

    He’d been called ‘Tufty’ at school, and the name had stuck.

  7. 7
    [intransitive] to decide that you do not want any more cards in some card games

    Are you sticking?

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