Meaning of STAPLE in English


I. ˈstāpəl noun

( -s )

Etymology: Middle English stapel staple, post, pillar, from Old English stapol post, pillar; akin to Middle Dutch stapel step, foundation, heap, emporium, Old High German staffal step, Old Norse stöpull pillar, tower, Old English steppan to step — more at step


a. : a U-shaped metal loop both ends of which are driven into a surface to hold the hook, hasp, or bolt of a lock, secure a rope, or fix a wire in place

b. : a small U-shaped wire both ends of which are driven through layers of thin and easily penetrable material (as paper or paperboard) and usually clinched to hold the layers together

2. : chaplet 4

3. : a mine shaft that is smaller and shorter than the principal one and joins different levels

4. or stapling

[ stapling from gerund of staple (II) ]

: an angle bar or plate that is fitted closely around the frames and structural members of a ship and passes through decks and bulkheads to secure oiltightness or watertightness

II. transitive verb

( stapled ; stapled ; stapling -p(ə)liŋ ; staples )

Etymology: Middle English staplen, from stapel, n.

: to provide with or secure by staples

staple papers together

III. noun

( -s )

Etymology: Middle English staple, stapull, from Middle Dutch stapel emporium

1. : a town formerly and usually by royal fiat used as a center for the sale or exportation of commodities (as wool, skin, and leather) in bulk

2. : a place of supply : source , center

Whitehall naturally became the chief staple of news — T.B.Macaulay


a. : a commodity that is produced regularly or in large quantities especially for a wholesale market

where … textiles and Welsh coal once led the list of exports, Britain's new staples are … — Time

b. : the principal commodity of traffic in a market : a chief commodity or production of a place

corn was the great staple of the Old West — R.A.Billington


a. : a commodity for which the demand is constant and not dependent on variable factors (as season or fashion)

sugar and flour are among a grocer's staples

b. : something that enjoys widespread and constant use or appeal : something that is regular fare

fish is one of the staples of the grizzly's diet — Charles Mulvey

news and weather reports are staples of television variety shows — Philip Hamburger

songs from his … shows are still … staples all over the world — Newsweek

c. : the sustaining or principal element : core , substance

the Bible … as the staple of their intellectual and spiritual lives — D.R.Meyer

the staple of Roman education was always a study of the poets — E.E.Sikes

5. : the unworked or natural material from which textiles and other goods are manufactured : raw material


a. or staple fiber : natural fiber (as of raw wool, cotton, flax, or hemp) or synthetic fiber (as cut from continuous filaments of rayon or nylon) of relatively short length that when spun and twisted forms a yarn as distinguished from a filament

b. : the length of a piece of such textile fiber ranging from about one inch for some types of cotton to several feet for hemp

tow is flax with short staple

IV. adjective

1. obsolete : of, relating to, or being a staple for commodities

2. : used, needed, or enjoyed constantly usually by many individuals : standard

such staple items as sugar and flour

the mesa was our staple topic of conversation — Willa Cather

a staple romantic prop in the construction of historical fiction — E.J.Fitzgerald

3. : produced regularly or in large quantities especially for a wholesale market

such staple crops as wheat, rice, cotton, flax, sugarcane — V.A.Baker

4. : principal , chief

the potato has long been the staple crop here — American Guide Series: Virginia

the staple diet of all true Mexicans … is the tortilla — Green Peyton

5. : being or made from textile staple

staple fiber

staple yarn

V. transitive verb

( -ed/-ing/-s )

1. : to sort or grade (staple) according to its length

staple cotton fiber

2. : to convert (material that does not occur naturally as staple) into staple

staple the filament rayon by cutting

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