There are 2 definitions of stale in English:

stale1

Line breaks: stale
Pronunciation: /steɪl
 
/

adjective (staler, stalest)

1(Of food) no longer fresh and pleasant to eat; hard, musty, or dry: stale bread
More example sentences
  • Sometimes the dough is stale and impossible to roll out.
  • Breakfast is always the same: instant oatmeal, coffee, and stale biscuits.
  • The next morning, our hopes were further smothered as our complimentary ‘breakfast’ consisted of a stale bun and a cup of milk.
Synonyms
dry, dried out, hard, hardened, old, past its best, past its sell-by date; off, mouldy, rotten, decayed, unfresh, rancid, rank
1.1No longer new and interesting or exciting: their marriage had gone stale
More example sentences
  • Youthful energy can make stale old artistic endeavours exciting.
  • Indoor gardens can transform a stale room into a vibrant living space.
  • He quotes five passages of bad English, in all of which he finds two common qualities: stale imagery and lack of precision.
Synonyms
hackneyed, tired, worn out, overworked, threadbare, warmed-up, banal, trite, stock, stereotyped, clichéd, run-of-the-mill, commonplace, platitudinous, unoriginal, derivative, unimaginative, uninspired, flat; out of date, outdated, outmoded, passé, archaic, obsolete, defunct, antiquated; North Americanwarmed-over
informal old hat, corny, out of the ark, played out, past their sell-by date, hacky
1.2 [predic.] (Of a person) no longer able to perform well or creatively because of having done something for too long: a top executive tends to get stale
More example sentences
  • Originally, Kye was way more hotter in my mind, but when I wrote him, he turned into a worry-wart with a stale personality.
  • It didn't send its green reporters to war, nor did it leave its stale reporters at home.
  • I won't defend him because I think he's stale and isn't half the wrestler he once was.
1.3(Of a cheque or legal claim) invalid because out of date: justifications for adverse possession go beyond stale claims
More example sentences
  • For example, it is frequently said that the doctrine is an embodiment of the policy that defendants should be protected from stale claims and that claimants should not sleep on their rights.
  • As I said at the outset of this judgment, the whole purpose of the Limitation Act is to ensure that claims are litigated promptly and that stale claims should be discouraged.
  • Counsel for the 1986 Trustee submits that the claims are stale, speculative, defensible and likely to fail.

verb

Back to top  
Make or become stale: [no object]: she would cut up yesterday’s leftover bread, staling now
More example sentences
  • The beans are then roasted and they are packaged in vac-packs to stop the air staling the product.
  • Dixon liked and revered him for his air of detesting everything that presented itself to his senses, and of not meaning to let this detestation become staled by custom.
  • Having live yeast in the cask ensures freshness because the ongoing fermentation helps to eliminate staling products that appear and the fresh hops ensure a vigorous hop flavour.

Origin

Middle English (describing beer in the sense 'clear from long standing, strong'): probably from Anglo-Norman French and Old French, from estaler 'to halt'; compare with the verb stall.

Derivatives

stalely

adverb
More example sentences
  • Despite the trattoria's views of the Tiber and its thoroughly Roman menu, every dish seemed stalely reheated and bland.
  • It's a stalely directed tear-jerker with bad music choices, but if you're going to watch one, it's one of the better ones.
  • An interesting piece, all in all, even if it is stalely predictable.

staleness

noun
More example sentences
  • This team has performed well in the last two years, but maybe there's a bit of staleness.
  • Burning herbs and spices still has a place in the home: not to mask staleness and bad odours as they did in those dank houses of the past, but to perfume the air with an enjoyable sweetness.
  • Even if you toast stale bread in an attempt to disguise the staleness, it's still stale.

Definition of stale in:

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove adverts and access premium resources

Word of the day glee
Pronunciation: gliː
noun
great delight, especially from one's own good fortune…

There are 2 definitions of stale in English:

stale2

Line breaks: stale
Pronunciation: /steɪl
 
/

verb

[no object]
(Of an animal, especially a horse) urinate: the horse staled while he was riding
More example sentences
  • But nervousness will likewise do it; fright, or anxiety of almost any kind, will make a horse stale inordinately.
  • The information obtained from the owner was, that a month ago he perceived that the horse staled very much, but he attributed it to the oats being a little mildewed.

Origin

late Middle English: perhaps from Old French estaler 'come to a stand, halt' (compare with stale1).

Definition of stale in: