Definition for STAY

STAY, v.i. [pret. staid, for stayed. Ir. stadam; Sp. estay, a stay of a ship; estada, stay, a remaining; estiar, to stop; Port. estada, abode; estaes, stays of a ship; estear, to stay, to prop; W. ystad, state; ystadu, to stay or remain; Fr. etai, etayer; D. stut, stutten. This word seems to be connected with state, and if so, is a derivative from the root of L. sto, to stand. But from the orthography of this word in the Irish, Spanish, and Portuguese, and of steti, the preterit of sto, in Latin, I am led to believe the elementary word was stad or stat. The sense is to set, stop, or hold. It is to be observed further, that stay may be easily deduced from the G. and D. stag, a stay; stag-segel, stay-sail; W. tagu, to stop.]

  1. To remain; to continue in a place; to abide for any indefinite time. Do you stay here, while I go to the next house. Stay here a week. We staid at the Hotel Montmorenci in Paris. – N. W. Stay, I command you; stay and hear me first. – Dryden.
  2. To continue in a state. The flames augment, and stay / At their full highth, then languish to decay. – Dryden.
  3. To wait; to attend; to forbear to act. I stay for Ternus. – Dryden. Would ye stay for them from having husbands? – Ruth i.
  4. To stop; to stand still. She would command the hasty sun to stay. – Spenser.
  5. To dwell. I must stay a little on one action. – Dryden.
  6. To rest; to rely; to confide in; to trust. Because ye despise this word, and trust in oppression, and stay thereon. – Is. xxx.

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