verb (stirs, stirring, stirred)
- 1 [with object] Move a spoon or other implement round and round in (a liquid or other substance) in order to mix it thoroughly: Desmond stirred his tea and ate a biscuit [no object]: pour in the cream and stir wellMore example sentences
- I raised an eyebrow, grabbing a wooden spoon to stir the thickening tomato sauce.
- Serena picked up a spoon and stirred the froth on her coffee.
- Pour in the wine and stir the rice until the liquid bubbles away.
- 1.1 (stir something in/into) Mix an ingredient into (a liquid or other substance) by moving a spoon or other implement round and round: stir in the flour and cook gently for two minutesMore example sentences
- He took the dish off the plate and began pouring it generously into the dark liquid, stirring the spirals into the tea with a small silver spoon.
- Mix the extra ingredients together in a bowl, stir the sifted flour into the mixture then add cream and milk.
- He took his spoon and stirred a sugar packet into his coffee.
- 2Move or cause to move slightly: [no object]: nothing stirred except the wind [with object]: a gentle breeze stirred the leaves cloudiness is caused by the fish stirring up mudMore example sentences
- The studio was filled with the rich odour of roses, and when the light summer wind stirred amidst the trees of the garden, there came through the open door the heavy scent of the lilac, or the more delicate perfume of the pink-flowering thorn.
- 2.1 [no object] Rise or wake from sleep: no one else had stirred yetMore example sentences
- The woman stirred suddenly, waking from a restless sleep.
- He fought it but soon he was stirring and rising from bed.
- The night's respite must have revitalized him, for he was stirring, even rising.
- 2.2 (stir from/out of) Leave or go out of (a place): as he grew older, he seldom stirred from his clubMore example sentences
- I slept through Saturday though I intended to do a couple of things, and was stirred from my lair by Heather phoning about Tim's birthday drinks which I was intended to go along to.
- Half an hour later, I finally stirred from the sofa and thought that I might as well go back to bed.
- You can be Indian living in America or American living in India; and sometimes, like the chatty souls at the call centers in India, you can be both and not even stir from your chair!
- 2.3Begin or cause to begin to be active or to develop: [no object]: the 1960s, when the civil rights movement stirred [with object]: a voice stirred her from her reverie he even stirred himself to play an encoreMore example sentences
- Which is why I can see both West Ham and Bolton winning and the Hammers going down, deserved punishment for a season in which they stirred themselves only when it was too late.
- Punch and Layerthorpe were on level terms as they started the pairs but Punch stirred themselves to close the match 6-3 in their favour.
- Speaker after speaker has stirred themselves to say ‘We are the party of decency, of honesty, of straight-speaking’.
- 3 [with object] Arouse strong feeling in (someone); move or excite: they will be stirred to action by what is written he stirred up the sweating crowdMore example sentences
- But he was not stirred to battle because the English had killed his father, as claimed in Braveheart.
- All I know is that you should write the music that you love and that you believe in, that stirs you and excites you.
- Founders proudly propagated the ‘One Zambia One Nation’ slogan that stirred the people to move on strongly and united.
- 3.1Arouse or prompt (a feeling or memory) or inspire (the imagination): the story stirred many memories of my childhood the rumours had stirred up his angerMore example sentences
- As it stirs our emotions with memories, it also makes possible the construction of a never-to-be forgotten narrative sequence.
- I owe her, and her husband Paul, my entire subsequent career and memories of them stir great affection.
- They hoped this act would stir a feeling, prompting the practitioners to serve in modesty to make up for the inadequate medical technology they had.
- 3.2 [no object] British • informal Deliberately cause trouble by spreading rumours or gossip: Francis was always stirring, trying to score off peopleMore example sentences
- My ringworm worried her more than the swarms of rumors the local gossips were stirring.
- They all minded themselves helplessly as they stirred with talks of gossip, death, and pets.
noun[in singular] Back to top
- 1A slight physical movement: I stood, straining eyes and ears for the faintest stirMore example sentences
- It was then that Ardon felt an odd stir of movement beneath him.
- My feet landed without the slightest stir of dust, or typical crunch of moving dirt and rocks.
- There was a stir of motion from the corner of her room.
- 1.1An initial sign of a specified feeling: Caroline felt a stir of anger deep within her breastMore example sentences
- As he expounded the philosophy of enterprise and free-market wealth creation, there was a stir of interest in the public gallery.
- The finds created a stir of interest in the isolated fishing community.
- He had seen that stare directed at errant Constables and felt a stir of pity for her.
- 2A commotion: the event caused quite a stirMore example sentences
- Probably neither name caused much stir from the leather armchairs in the New Club, where the city's grandees would once have counted the man in charge at North Bridge as one of their own.
- What happens in Congo does not cause the slightest stir in the boardrooms of London and New York.
- Yet, it seems that it is popular enough to have created a stir in the physics department.
- 3An act of stirring food or drink: he gives his Ovaltine a stirMore example sentences
- Give the chocolate mixture a stir, then spoon into the moulds.
- After the butter had melted Aunty Jenni gave the mixture a really good stir and some strange dark brown shapes rose to the surface from the depths.
- This refers to the process of pouring the ingredients into the glass on top of each other and giving it a slight stir.
stir the blood
- Make someone excited or enthusiastic.More example sentences
- There was little between two great teams, but Waterford were the sharper, the more determined and, in the end, sharpness and determination allied to a brand of hurling that still stirs the blood and excites the memory carried that day.
- Which is the shrewdest motivational trick of all for a national team manager to employ, because at the top level it is not money or patriotism which stirs the blood of footballers, but the prospect of self-improvement.
- Do we not deserve a flag that stirs the blood and sparks starry-eyed pride in the way that the Star-Spangled Banner does for Americans?
stir one's stumps
- [often in imperative] British • informal , • dated (Of a person) begin to move or act.More example sentences
- Things are never dull when she stirs her stumps to create a mild uproar in that pompous little town.
- Here, you Matthews, look for sharp and stir your stumps a bit - one would think you were walking in your sleep.
- Unfortunately, this is one disadvantage to being published by a small press - you pretty much have to stir your stumps and do your own promotion.
stir something up
- Cause or provoke trouble or bad feeling: he accused me of trying to stir up troubleMore example sentences
- We both laughed nervously and he told me that he had heard that some Asian youths in Leeds had been stirring things up by deliberately leaving rucksacks on buses.
- A brewery is stirring up a touch of controversy in the Yorkshire Dales - with an advertising campaign declaring that ‘drinking is folly’.
- "They have been stirring up chaos in Hong Kong and at the same time they want to change the mainland's political system.
Old English styrian, of Germanic origin; related to German stören 'disturb'.
- Prison: I’ve spent twenty-eight years in stirMore example sentences
- In stir, he dreamed about his boxing career, how he was going to train and go straight and turn his life around.
- That's right; something as innocent as playing computer chess on your laptop in a hotel lobby is now a crime with penalties of up to three months in stir and a fine of 10,000 euros.
- He later retained an attorney, and after seven months in stir was released on bail with his pre-trial release restrictions tightened further.
mid 19th century: perhaps from Romany sturbin 'jail'.