Pronunciation Adjective

stark (comparative starker, superlative starkest)

  1. (obsolete) Hard, firm; obdurate.
  2. Severe; violent; fierce (now usually in describing the weather).
  3. (archaic) Strong; vigorous; powerful.
    • 1805, Walter Scott, The Lay of the Last Minstrel:
      a stark, moss-trooping Scot
    • (Can we date this quote?), Francis Beaumont; John Fletcher, “The Beggar's Bush”, in Comedies and Tragedies […], London: Printed for Humphrey Robinson, […], and for Humphrey Moseley […], published 1647, OCLC 3083972 ↗, Act 3, scene 2:
      Stark beer, boy, stout and strong beer.
  4. Stiff, rigid.
    • Whose senses all were straight benumbed and stark.
    • c. 1597, William Shakespeare, “The First Part of Henry the Fourth, […]”, in Mr. William Shakespeares Comedies, Histories, & Tragedies: Published According to the True Originall Copies (First Folio), London: Printed by Isaac Iaggard, and Ed[ward] Blount, published 1623, OCLC 606515358 ↗, [Act V, scene iii]:
      Many a nobleman lies stark and stiff / Under the hoofs of vaunting enemies.
    • 1611, Ben Jonson, Catiline His Conspiracy
      The north is not so stark and cold.
  5. Hard in appearance; barren, desolate.
    I picked my way forlornly through the stark, sharp rocks.
  6. Complete, absolute, full.
    I screamed in stark terror.
    A flower was growing, in stark contrast, out of the sidewalk.
    • 1611, Ben Jonson, Catiline His Conspiracy
      Consider, first, the stark security / The commonwealth is in now.
    • 1689 (first published posthumously), John Selden, Table-Talk
      Rhetoric is very good or stark naught; there's no medium in rhetoric.
    • 1851 November 13, Herman Melville, chapter 17, in Moby-Dick; or, The Whale, 1st American edition, New York, N.Y.: Harper & Brothers; London: Richard Bentley, OCLC 57395299 ↗:
      Ramadans, and prolonged ham-squattings in cold, cheerless rooms were stark nonsense
Translations Translations Translations Translations Translations Translations Adverb

stark (not comparable)

  1. starkly; entirely, absolutely
    He's gone stark, staring mad.
    She was just standing there, stark naked.
    • 1655, Thomas Fuller, Church-History of Britain
      […] held him strangled in his arms till he was stark dead.
Translations Verb

stark (starks, present participle starking; past and past participle starked)

  1. (obsolete or dialect) To stiffen.
Related terms
  • (GA) IPA: /stɑɹk/
Proper noun
  1. Surname
  2. An unincorporated community in Butts County, Georgia.
  3. An unincorporated community in Stark County, Illinois.
  4. A tiny city in Neosho County, Kansas.
  5. An unincorporated community in Elliott County, Kentucky.
  6. An unincorporated community in Pike County, Missouri.
  7. A small town in Coos County, New Hampshire.
  8. A small town in Herkimer County, New York.
  9. An unincorporated community in Boone County, West Virginia.
  10. A small town in Vernon County, Wisconsin.

stark (uncountable)

  1. (fiction)The language spoken in the Ender's Game series, which is nearly identical to American English

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