Definition of mainstay in English:

Share this entry


Pronunciation: /ˈmānˌstā/


1A stay that extends from the maintop to the foot of the foremast of a sailing ship.
2A thing on which something else is based or depends: farming is the mainstay of the rural economy
More example sentences
  • The gun run, loosely based on the exploits of Naval squads in the Boer War, was a mainstay of the Royal Tournament.
  • The first pick of Fox's second draft was Jordan Gross, who has become a mainstay at right tackle.
  • Since I have so much yew foliage, this is the mainstay of the ropes and swags that I will be creating.
central component, central figure, centerpiece, prop, linchpin, cornerstone, pillar, bulwark, buttress, chief support, backbone, anchor, foundation, base, staple

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: main·stay

Share this entry

What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.