Meaning of STABLE in English


I. ˈstābəl noun

( -s )

Etymology: Middle English, from Old French estable, from Latin stabulum, from stare to stand — more at stand

1. : a building or part of a building in which domestic animals are lodged and fed ; especially : such a building having stalls or compartments

the horse stable is in the main barn, the cow stable is separate


a. : a group of racing horses under one ownership or management ; also : the horses of such a group or the persons concerned with the ownership, operation, or management of such a group

b. : a group or staff of people (as artists, comedians, speakers, writers) engaged to contribute their services or perform when called upon : pool:

(1) : a group of athletes (as boxers or tennis players) under the direction of a single manager

(2) : a group of prostitutes working for a pimp

c. : a group of things under a single ownership or management

a stable of publications

a stable of racing cars

a stable of five suits — Mel Watkins

3. stables plural

a. : military duty in the stables

b. : the bugle call to such duty

II. verb

( stabled ; stabled ; stabling -b(ə)liŋ ; stables )

Etymology: Middle English stablen, from Middle French establer, from Latin stabulare, from stabulum

transitive verb

: to put or keep (as animals) in a stable : house

horses and cows were stabled on the lower floor — American Guide Series: North Carolina

garage … redesigned to stable neighborhood Cadillacs — Newsweek

intransitive verb

: to dwell in or as if in a stable

III. adjective

( often stabler -b(ə)lə(r) ; often stablest -b(ə)lə̇st)

Etymology: Middle English, from Old French estable, from Latin stabilis, from stare to stand + -abilis -able — more at stand


a. : firmly established : not easily moved, shaken, or overthrown : solid , fixed , steadfast

so long upon the moving, rocking sea that the stable land was a shock to us — Jack London

the sawmill village with sawdust streets became a stable community and was incorporated as a city — American Guide Series: Michigan

dictatorship always appears stable — Christian Science Monitor

stable habits

a stable theory

b. : not subject to sudden change : subject to relatively limited fluctuation : durable , unvarying

stable currency

a stable economy

a general trend toward a stable population, rather than one that will continue to increase — K.F.Mather

some industries are quite stable inasmuch as no basic changes in technique occur for a long period of time — E.B.Alderfer & H.E.Michl

a relatively stable society, where class mobility is reasonably low, where the individual remains, both physically and socially, in the place in which he was born — Leslie Cheek

the personnel of the Supreme Court remained relatively stable — R.K.Carr

c. : abiding , enduring , persisting , permanent

a stable peace

your name will travel widely over the world, but will have no stable habitation — J.A.Froude


a. : steady in purpose : firm in resolution

b. : not subject to insecurity or emotional illness : sane , rational

a stable personality

many boys are not emotionally stable and, as a result, behave in a way that makes some adults believe them to be retarded — H.A.Delp


a. : placed so as to resist forces tending to cause motion or change of motion : designed so as to develop forces that restore the original condition when disturbed from a condition of equilibrium or steady motion

an airplane is stable if, when it is disturbed from a balanced condition of flight (whether level, climbing or gliding), its tendency is to return to that condition — Skyways

b. : of such structure as to resist distortion


(1) : not readily decomposing or changing otherwise in chemical composition or biological activity (as spontaneously or under the influence of heat, acid, or alkali)

penicillin … is stable at a point about neutrality — American Scholar

(2) : not readily changing in physical state or properties

a stable emulsion

a stable substance never changes spontaneously into a metastable one — Samuel Glasstone

(3) : not spontaneously radioactive or observably so

a stable isotope

a stable nucleus

Webster's New International English Dictionary.      Новый международный словарь английского языка Webster.