Meaning of STAPLE in English


I. sta ‧ ple 1 /ˈsteɪp ə l/ BrE AmE noun [countable]

[ Sense 1-2: Language: Old English ; Origin: stapol 'post' ]

[ Sense 3-4: Origin: . 1300-1400 Middle Dutch stapel 'place of trade' ]

1 . a small piece of thin wire that is pushed into sheets of paper and bent over to hold them together

2 . a small U-shaped piece of metal with pointed ends, used to hold something in place

3 . a food that is needed and used all the time:

staples like flour and rice

4 . the main product that is produced in a country:

Bananas and sugar are the staples of Jamaica.

II. staple 2 BrE AmE verb [transitive]

to fasten two or more things together with a staple

staple something together

The handouts are all stapled together.

staple something to something

I stapled the order form to the invoice.

• • •


▪ fasten to join together the two sides of a piece of clothing, bag, belt etc:

He fastened the necklace behind her neck.

▪ attach to fasten something firmly to another object or surface, using screws, nails, tape, glue etc:

The boards were attached with screws.


The prisoner was attached to the wall with chains.

▪ join to connect or fasten things together:

Join the pieces using a strong glue

▪ glue to join things together using glue:

Glue the fabric to the white card.

▪ tape to fasten something using tape:

The students' name cards were taped to the table.

▪ staple to fasten something using ↑ staple s (=a small piece of wire that is pressed through paper using a special machine) :

Don't staple your resumé to your cover letter.

▪ clip to fasten things together using a ↑ clip (=a small metal object) :

A photo was clipped to the letter.

▪ tie to fasten a tie, shoelaces etc by making a knot:

Don't forget to tie your shoelaces!

▪ do something up especially British English to fasten a piece of clothing or the buttons etc on it:

The teacher doesn't have time to do up every child's coat.


Let me do it up for you.

▪ button (up) to fasten a shirt, coat etc with buttons:

His shirt was buttoned right to the top.

▪ zip (up) to fasten a piece of clothing, a bag etc with a ↑ zip :

Zip up your jacket, it's cold.

▪ buckle (up) to fasten a seat belt, belt, shoe etc that has a ↑ buckle (=small metal object that fits through a hole in a strap) :

The little girl struggled to buckle her shoes.

▪ unfasten/untie/undo/unbutton/unzip to open something that is fastened:

Do not unfasten your seatbelt until the car has stopped completely.

III. staple 3 BrE AmE adjective [only before noun]

1 . forming the greatest or most important part of something:

Oil is Nigeria’s staple export.

a staple ingredient of comedy

2 . staple diet

a) the food that you normally eat

staple diet of

They live on a staple diet of rice and vegetables.

b) something that is always being produced, seen, bought etc

staple diet of

television’s staple diet of soap operas and quiz shows

3 . used all the time:

Marty’s staple excuses

Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English.      Longman - Словарь современного английского языка.