Meaning of STOP in English

I. stop 1 S1 W1 /stɒp $ stɑːp/ BrE AmE verb ( past tense and past participle stopped , present participle stopping )

[ Word Family: noun : ↑ stop , ↑ stoppage , ↑ stopper ; verb : ↑ stop , ↑ stopper ; adverb : non-stop; adjective : non-stop]

[ Language: Old English ; Origin: stoppian 'to block up' ]


a) [intransitive and transitive] to not continue, or to make someone or something not continue:

By midday the rain had stopped.

This is where the path stops.

The referee stopped the fight.

The doctor advised me to stop the medication.

People are fighting to stop the destruction of the rain forests.

stop somebody doing something

I couldn’t stop her crying.

b) [intransitive and transitive] if you stop doing something, you do not continue to do it

stop doing something

I stopped digging and looked at him.

What time do you stop work?

I’ve been smoking for over ten years, and I can’t stop.

stop it/that (=stop doing something annoying)

Come on, you two! Stop it!

Right, stop what you’re doing and come over here.

► In this sense, do not say ‘stop to do something’. Say stop doing something . Stop to do something means to stop moving along or stop what you are doing in order to do something else : She stopped to look at the map (=in order to look at the map).

2 . PREVENT [transitive] to prevent someone from doing something or something from happening:

The government tried to stop publication of the book.

I’m leaving now, and you can’t stop me.

stop somebody/something (from) doing something

Lay the carpet on paper to stop it sticking to the floor.

The rain didn’t stop us from enjoying the trip.

stop yourself (from) doing something

I couldn’t stop myself laughing.

She grabbed the rail to stop herself from falling.

there’s nothing to stop somebody (from) doing something

There’s nothing to stop you applying for the job yourself.

► Do not say ‘stop someone to do something’. Say stop someone (from) doing something .


[intransitive and transitive] to not walk, move, or travel any more, or to make someone or something do this:

He stopped suddenly when he saw Ruth.

Stop! Come back!

He stopped the car and got out.

I was worried that the security guards would stop us at the gate.

stop at/outside/in etc

She stopped outside the post office.

A car stopped behind us.

stop to do something

Sam stopped to give me a lift.

stop and do something

He stopped and looked into her face.

stop for

I need to stop for a rest.

stop dead/short/in your tracks (=stop walking suddenly)

Sally saw the ambulance and stopped short.

stop on a dime American English (=stop very quickly – used about cars)

This truck can stop on a dime!

4 . PAUSE [intransitive] to pause in an activity, journey etc in order to do something before you continue

stop for

We stopped for a drink on the way home.

stop to do something

I stopped to tie my shoe.

stop to think/consider etc

It’s time we stopped to think about our next move.

5 . STAY [intransitive] British English informal to stay somewhere for a short time, especially at someone’s house:

I won’t sit down – I’m not stopping.

stop for

Will you stop for a cup of tea?

6 . will/would stop at nothing (to do something) to be ready to do anything to achieve something that you want to achieve:

We will stop at nothing to save our child.

7 . stop short of (doing) something to decide that you are not willing to do something wrong or dangerous, though you will do something similar that is less dangerous:

The US government supported sanctions but stopped short of military action.

8 . MONEY [transitive] if you stop an amount of money, you prevent it from being paid to someone:

Dad threatened to stop my pocket money.

stop something from something

£200 will be stopped from your wages next month to pay for the damage.

I phoned the bank and asked them to stop the cheque (=not pay a cheque that I had written) .

My mother called the bank to stop payment on the check.

9 . BLOCK [transitive] ( also stop up ) to block a hole or pipe so that water, smoke etc cannot go through it

• • •


■ to stop doing something

▪ stop to not do something any longer:

I wish she would stop talking.


He waited for them to stop.

▪ quit especially American English informal to stop doing something:

She needs to quit complaining about her life.


It’s too late for him to quit now.

▪ give something up to stop doing something, especially something that you have been doing for a long time:

It’s so hard to give up smoking.


She wants to give up her job.


I’ve given up trying to tell my son to clean his room.

▪ pack something in informal to stop doing something, especially because you feel tired or annoyed:

Sometimes I feel like packing in my job and starting again somewhere else.


Pack it in, will you! (=used when telling someone to stop doing something, because they are annoying you)

▪ pull out of something to stop taking part in something that you have agreed to take part in:

The unions have pulled out of the negotiations.


The US decided to pull out of the competition.

▪ cease formal to stop doing something:

The company has decided to cease production of its film cameras.


The US government ceased talks with North Korea.

■ to stop for a short time

▪ stop :

Shall we stop for coffee now?


I stopped to have a look at the map.

▪ pause to stop speaking or doing something for a short time before starting again:

He paused for a moment to consider the question.


‘I think it’s going to rain,’ she said, pausing to look up at the sky.

▪ have/take a break to stop working, studying, or driving for a short time in order to rest:

Okay, everyone. Take a ten-minute break.


If you’re feeling tired, you should have a break.

▪ break to stop working, studying etc in order to rest or eat something – used about a group of people who are doing something together:

After a couple of hours the committee broke for lunch.

■ to stop happening

▪ stop :

The noise suddenly stopped.


We waited for the rain to stop.

▪ come to an end to stop – used about something that has continued for a long time:

The war finally came to an end in 1918.

▪ wear off to gradually stop – used about a pain, a feeling, or the effects of something:

The pain will soon wear off.


The excitement was beginning to wear off.


The anaesthetic took a long time to wear off.

▪ peter out to gradually stop happening or existing:

The campaign petered out after only a few weeks.

▪ cease formal to stop:

The fighting has ceased.


Production at the factory has ceased.

■ to stop moving

▪ stop :

Can we stop soon? I’m tired.


The bus stops right in front of the hotel.

▪ come to a halt especially written to move more slowly and then stop – used about a vehicle:

The train slowly came to a halt just outside the station.


The plane came to a halt less than twenty yards away from the limousines.

▪ pull over to move to the side of the road and stop – used about a vehicle or its driver:

The bus pulled over to the side of the road, with smoke coming out of its engine.


The police officer was waving at him to pull over.

▪ pull up to stop close to something – used about a vehicle or its driver:

The taxi pulled up outside her house.


He pulled up next to our car.

▪ come to a standstill to go slower and then stop moving completely:

The road was blocked by an accident, and the traffic quickly came to a standstill.

stop back phrasal verb American English

to go back to a place you have been to earlier:

Can you stop back later? I’m busy right now.

stop by (something) phrasal verb

to make a short visit to a place or a person's home, especially while you are going somewhere else:

I’ll stop by this evening.

Daniel stopped by the store on his way home.

stop in phrasal verb informal

1 . to make a short visit to a place or person, especially while you are going somewhere else:

I’ll stop in and see you on my way home.

stop in at

I need to stop in at the library.

2 . British English to stay at home:

I’m stopping in to wash my hair tonight.

stop off phrasal verb

to make a short visit to a place during a journey, especially to rest or to see someone:

We can stop off and see you on our way back.

stop off in/at etc

We stopped off in Santa Rosa for a day.

stop out phrasal verb British English

informal to stay out later than usual:

It was a real treat being allowed to stop out late.

stop over phrasal verb

to stop somewhere and stay a short time before continuing a long journey, especially when travelling by plane:

The plane stops over in Dubai on the way to India.

⇨ ↑ stopover

stop up phrasal verb

1 . stop something ↔ up to block a hole or pipe so that water, smoke etc cannot go through it

2 . British English informal to stay up late:

Joe stopped up till 3 o'clock to watch the boxing.

II. stop 2 S2 W3 BrE AmE noun [countable]

[ Word Family: noun : ↑ stop , ↑ stoppage , ↑ stopper ; verb : ↑ stop , ↑ stopper ; adverb : non-stop; adjective : non-stop]

1 . come/roll/jerk/skid etc to a stop if a vehicle comes to a stop, it stops moving:

The bus came to a stop outside the school.

The car skidded to a stop.

2 . come to a stop if an activity comes to a stop, it stops happening:

Work on the project has come to a stop because of lack of funding.

3 . bring something to a stop to stop something moving or happening:

David brought the truck to a shuddering stop.

The UN is trying to bring the war to a stop.

4 . DURING JOURNEY a time or place when you stop during a journey for a short time:

Our first stop was Paris.

We’ll make a stop at the foot of the hill.

The trip includes an overnight stop in London.

5 . BUS/TRAIN a place where a bus or train regularly stops for people to get on and off:

Our next stop will be York.

This is your stop, isn’t it?

6 . put a stop to something to prevent something from continuing or happening:

The government is determined to put a stop to the demonstrations.

7 . pull out all the stops to do everything you possibly can to make something happen and succeed:

The hospital staff pulled out all the stops to make sure the children had a wonderful day.

8 . MONEY the action or fact of telling your bank not to pay an amount of money to someone:

I put a stop on that check to the store.

9 . MUSIC a handle that you push in or out on an ↑ organ to control the amount of sound it produces

10 . CONSONANT a consonant sound, like /p/ or /k/, that you make by stopping the flow of air completely and then suddenly letting it out of your mouth

⇨ ↑ full stop 1

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