There are 2 definitions of stake in English:

stake1

Line breaks: stake
Pronunciation: /steɪk
 
/

noun

  • 1A strong wooden or metal post with a point at one end, driven into the ground to support a plant, form part of a fence, mark a boundary, etc..
    More example sentences
    • A row of more than 15 bricks, pieces of concrete, metal poles, wooden stakes and a traffic cone were balanced on the track in a blatant act of sabotage.
    • The simplest of all plant supports are stakes or poles.
    • Shivering slightly, I tied the horse's well-used rein to a rotting stake in the wooden fence and stepped inside.
    Synonyms
    post, pole, stick, spike, upright, support, prop, strut, stave, pale, paling, picket, pile, piling, stanchion, shaft, cane, beanpole, rod, mast
    historical palisade
  • 1.1 (the stake) • historical A wooden post to which a person was tied before being burned alive as a punishment: Bishop Ridley was burned at the stake
    More example sentences
    • Opinions and beliefs which are popular need no protection - it's the hard and unpopular ones that people get stoned and burned at the stake for.
    • Thomas Weir was sentenced to death and burned at the stake, while his sister was hanged.
    • A few decades earlier Bruno had been found guilty of heresy, and then burned at the stake, for suggesting that Earth may not be the only place in the universe that harbors life.
  • 1.2A long vertical rod used in basket-making.
    More example sentences
    • As well as the common method of weaving baskets on a stake and strand principle, Jane also makes coiled, plaited, interlaced and frame baskets.
    • Soak the ends of your stakes, cut the inside stakes flush with the top of the basket and cut and tuck the outside stakes into the first available weaver inside the basket.
    • Weave all the way around the basket, back to the starting point, going over one stake and behind the next.
  • 2A metalworker’s small anvil, typically with a projection for fitting into a socket on a bench.
    More example sentences
    • It is also to be observed that of the two hammer-like instruments found together in the Harty hoard one is much larger than the other, and may have formed the head of a stake or anvil, while the other served as a hammer.
    • Numerous hammers, stakes and shaping tools were put to use in shaping the artwork of leaves.
  • 3A territorial division of the Mormon Church under the jurisdiction of a president.
    More example sentences
    • Congregations are organized into stakes and districts, which belong to a temple district.
    • The teenagers in our stake spent five days at the temple this year, with classes and activities during the day, a dance or testimony meeting at night, and a baptismal session in the temple each morning.

verb

[with object] Back to top  
  • 1Support (a plant) with a stake or stakes: the gladioli were staked in gaudy ranks vigorous plants need staking
    More example sentences
    • Trees are frequently staked for support after planting and there is much debate as to whether these should be long stakes, short stakes or even slanting stakes.
    • It's always a good idea to stake trees when you plant them.
    • However, if the tree was staked in the nursery or if you are planting in a windy location, proper staking will support the tree during its first years in the ground.
    Synonyms
  • 2 (stake something out) Mark an area with stakes so as to claim ownership of it: the boundary between the two manors was properly staked out
    More example sentences
    • ‘These territories might be staked out’ I added.
    • Once a territory is staked out and the owner of the property becomes lax in his knowledge that his land is safe is when he is the most vulnerable.
    • Babu snagged the spot last year by dispatching a friend to stake it out two months before the season even started.
    Synonyms
    mark off, mark out, demarcate, mark the boundaries/limits of, outline, measure out, define, delimit, fence off, section off, close off, shut off, cordon off, bound, circumscribe
  • 2.1Be assertive in defining and defending a position or policy: Elena was staking out a role for herself as a formidable political force
    More example sentences
    • She creates a new ‘moderate’ position by staking a position out on the margin of what had previously been ‘acceptable’.
    • Tom had staked this area out when he was a freshman to avoid sitting in a hallway and getting stepped on or a crowded student lounge.
    • Certainly the city still has a long way to go before we can start to claim mission success, but at least the road has been staked out toward completion.

Phrases

go to the stake for

Used to emphasize that one would do anything to defend a particular belief, opinion, or person: I trust these people—I would go to the stake for every one of them
More example sentences
  • Ann Widdecombe says she would go to the stake for her beliefs, and I believe her.
  • I hope that if it ever came down to it I might be willing to go to the stake for belief in the triune God.
  • ‘That there is nothing they would go to the stake for,’ he replies immediately.

pull up stakes

North American Move or go to live elsewhere: his father wrangled with a foreman and the family pulled up stakes
More example sentences
  • Geneva, which in the not-so-distant past was considered a cultural backwater, with many galleries pulling up stakes to move elsewhere, has recently become an importer of galleries and auction houses.
  • That's the kind of weather report that might cause golfers to think about pulling up stakes and moving to Phoenix.
  • Tommie pulled up stakes and moved back to Cleveland to be by his mother.

stake a claim

Assert one’s right to something: the batsman staked a claim for a place in the side
More example sentences
  • It is a commonplace feature of political and legal debate that advocates of various interests seek to characterise those interests as rights, thereby staking a claim for weight or recognition that may be contestable.
  • However, those states not formed around a pre-existing national identity have greater difficulty in staking a claim to being a nation-state, and consequent problems with stability.
  • When the surrounding metropolitan area is included, Cairo has a population of 14.5 million, staking a claim to 9th largest city in the world.
Synonyms
assert, declare, proclaim, state, make, lay, establish, put on record, put in

Phrasal verbs

stake someone/thing out

informal Keep a person or place under surveillance: they’d staked out Culley’s flat for a day
More example sentences
  • I have been staked out by numerous people the entire morning, all of them telling me wacky rumors about you.
  • I can't let him go, or else I will be forced by some force greater than I to stake him out again and draw him back, as I have done twice before.
  • We stake the place out, eyeing the set up of the amps and the positioning of the security guards.
Synonyms
observe, watch, keep an eye on, keep under observation, keep watch on, keep under surveillance, survey, monitor, keep under scrutiny, watch like a hawk, keep a weather eye on, spy on, check out
informal keep tabs on, keep a tab on, case, keep a beady eye on
rare surveil

Origin

Old English staca, of West Germanic origin; related to Dutch staak, also to stick2.

More definitions of stake

Definition of stake in:

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove adverts and access premium resources

Word of the day astrogation
Pronunciation: ˌastrə(ʊ)ˈgeɪʃ(ə)n
noun
(in science fiction) navigation in outer space

There are 2 definitions of stake in English:

stake2

Line breaks: stake
Pronunciation: /steɪk
 
/

noun

  • 1A sum of money or something else of value gambled on the outcome of a risky game or venture: playing dice for high stakes figurative the opposition raised the stakes in the battle for power the stakes are high with a six-figure bonanza in television rights in the balance
    More example sentences
    • Sharply rising income inequality has raised the stakes of the economic game.
    • I don't think I've ever met a successful man who didn't take risks or didn't gamble for high stakes.
    • The lure of casinos has raised the stakes for federal recognition.
    Synonyms
    bet, wager, ante, pledge, hazard
  • 1.1A share or interest in a business, situation, or system: GM acquired a 50 per cent stake in Saab
    More example sentences
    • The joint ventures in a number of Scottish cities will operate under the Quality Street brand, but local partners will have a stake in the business.
    • Yang said the group wants foreign investors to take stakes in its business, but will insist that it be the controlling shareholder in any joint ventures.
    • A 25.78 per cent stake - 261 352 shares - will be up for sale until February 17.
    Synonyms
    share, interest, financial interest, investment, involvement, concern
  • 1.2 (stakes) Prize money, especially in horse racing.
    More example sentences
    • Former champion jockey Willie Carson said a Manchester racecourse would up the stakes in the sport - and propel the city into the world's richest league.
    • Handicap stakes and prize money of that sort for a long-distance handicap at Musselburgh would have been unthinkable just a few years ago.
    • Mecca Bingo in Regent Circus is angry that it will not be able to increase stakes and prize money when new legislation comes into force.
    Synonyms
  • 1.3 [in names] (Stakes) A horse race in which all the owners of the racehorses running contribute to the prize money: the horse is to run in the Craven Stakes
    More example sentences
    • All the action from day two of Flat racing's big meeting, where Grandera wins the Prince of Wales' Stakes, the big race of the day.
    • Wando had not won a stakes race since clinching the Triple Crown in the Breeders' Stakes at Woodbine last August.
    • On May 7, the Saudi Arabia Royal Cup, the Oasis Stakes Race, was held at Tokyo Racetrack.
  • 1.4 (with modifier stakes) A situation involving competition in a specified area: we will keep you one step ahead in the fashion stakes
    More example sentences
    • But he has competition in the style stakes from Dougray Scott, who has recently been linked with the role of James Bond because of his suave good looks.
    • They just want to protect their market share by teaming up with fellow soulmates to keep the competition in the superstition stakes at bay.
    • Smart said yesterday that it was confident of taking on Eircom in the competition stakes.
    Synonyms
    competition, contest, battle, challenge, rivalry, race, running, struggle, scramble

verb

[with object] Back to top  
  • 1Gamble (money or something else of value) on the outcome of a game or race: one gambler staked everything he’d got and lost figurative it was risky to stake his reputation on one big success
    More example sentences
    • It just shows you can win big even when you haven't staked much money.
    • The total money staked by the players must not be more than what is currently in the bank, but within this limit you can bet any amount you wish.
    • Here the bank would take half the money that had been staked on the paired cards.
    Synonyms
    bet, wager, place a bet of, lay, put on, gamble, pledge, chance, venture, risk, hazard
  • 2North American informal Give financial or other support to: he staked him to an education at the École des Beaux-Arts
    More example sentences
    • His father had staked him some money to buy a limited partnership in Mostly Bull when the firm was still a calfling during the exuberant days when the Insecurity business was actually making money for some people.

Phrases

at stake

  • 1At risk: people’s lives could be at stake
    More example sentences
    • The tempo of the game was at the highest point as both teams threw everything into the game with so much at stake.
    • For professional huntsman Richard Emmott the Government's ban means his job and home are at stake.
    • Much more is at stake in the battle which is about to get under way.
  • 2At issue or in question: the logical response is to give up, but there’s more at stake than logic
    More example sentences
    • There does not seem to me to be a fundamental issue of jurisprudence at stake, but more a question of evidence.
    • The issues at stake are issues that people of faith need to confront.
    • There are several issues at stake here, but two stand out in particular.

Origin

late Middle English: perhaps a specialized usage of stake1, from the notion of an object being placed as a wager on a post or stake.

More definitions of stake

Definition of stake in: