stickleback (n.)
c. 1400, from Old English sticel "prick, sting, goad, thorn" (from Proto-Germanic *stik- "pierce, prick, be sharp;" see stick (v.)) + back (n.).
stickler (n.)
1530s, "moderator, umpire," agent noun from stickle "mediate" (1520s), probably a frequentative of Middle English stighten "to arrange, place," from Old English stihtan "to rule, direct, arrange, order," which is cognate with Middle Dutch stichten, German stiften "to found, establish," probably from Proto-Germanic *stihtan "to place on a step or base," from PIE root *steigh- "to stride, step, rise" (see stair). Meaning "person who contends or insists stubbornly" is first recorded 1640s.
sticks (n.)
"rural place," 1905, from sticks in slang sense of "trees" (compare backwoods). See stick (n.).
sticktoitiveness (n.)
1871, from phrase stick to it "persevere."
stickum (n.)
"glue, paste," 1909, from stick (v.).
sticky (adj.)
1727, "adhesive, inclined to stick," from stick (v.) + -y (2). An Old English word for this was clibbor. First recorded 1864 in the sense of "sentimental;" of situations, 1915 with the meaning "difficult." Of weather, "hot and humid," from 1895. Sticky wicket is 1952, from British slang, in reference to cricket. Related: Stickily; stickiness.
stiff (n.)
"corpse, dead body," 1859, slang, from stiff (adj.) which had been associated with notion of rigor mortis since c. 1200. Meaning "working man" first recorded 1930, from earlier genitive sense of "contemptible person," but sometimes merely "man, fellow" (1882). Slang meaning "something or someone bound to lose" is 1890 (originally of racehorses), from notion of "corpse."
stiff (v.)
late 14c., "to make stiff," from stiff (adj.). Meaning "fail to tip" is from 1939, originally among restaurant and hotel workers, probably from stiff (n.), perhaps in slang sense of "corpse" (because dead men pay no tips), or from the "contemptible person" sense. Extended by 1950 to "cheat."
stiff (adj.)
Old English stif "rigid, inflexible," from Proto-Germanic *stifaz "inflexible" (source also of Dutch stijf, Old High German stif, German steif "stiff;" Old Norse stifla "choke"), from PIE *stipos-, from root *steip- "press together, pack, cram" (source also of Sanskrit styayate "coagulates," stima "slow;" Greek stia, stion "small stone," steibo "press together;" Latin stipare "pack down, press," stipes "post, tree trunk;" Lithuanian stipti "stiffen," stiprus "strong;" Old Church Slavonic stena "wall"). Of battles and competitions, from mid-13c.; of liquor, from 1813. To keep a stiff upper lip is attested from 1815. Related: Stiffly.
stiff-necked (adj.)
"stubborn, obstinate," 1520s (in Tindale's rendition of Acts vii.51), from stiff (adj.) + neck (n.); translating Latin dura cervice in Vulgate, from Greek sklero trachelos, a literal translation from Hebrew qesheh 'oref.
stiffen (v.)
early 15c., "make steadfast," from stiff (adj.) + -en (1). Intransitive sense from 1690s. Earlier verb was simply stiff "gain strength, become strong" (late 14c.). Related: Stiffened; stiffener; stiffening. Compare German steifen "to stiffen."
stiffness (n.)
late 14c., from stiff (adj.) + -ness. Meaning "uneasy formality" is from 1630s.
stifle (v.)
late 14c., "to choke, suffocate, drown," of uncertain origin, possibly an alteration of Old French estouffer "to stifle, smother" (Modern French étouffer), itself of uncertain origin, perhaps from a Germanic source (compare Old High German stopfon "to plug up, stuff"). Metaphoric sense is from 1570s. Related: Stifled; stifling.
stigma (n.)
1590s (earlier stigme, c. 1400), "mark made on skin by burning with a hot iron," from Latin stigma (plural stigmata), from Greek stigma (genitive stigmatos) "mark of a pointed instrument, puncture, tattoo-mark, brand," from root of stizein "to mark, tattoo," from PIE root *steig- "to stick; pointed" (see stick (v.)).

Figurative meaning "a mark of disgrace" in English is from 1610s. Stigmas "marks resembling the wounds on the body of Christ, appearing supernaturally on the bodies of the devout" is from 1630s; earlier stigmate (late 14c.), from Latin stigmata.
stigmatic (adj.)
c. 1600, from Medieval Latin stigmaticus, from stigmat-, stem of Greek stigma (see stigma), + -ic. Related: Stigmatical (1580s).
stigmatism (n.)
1660s, "a branding," from Greek stigmatizein, from stigmat-, stem of stigma (see stigma). Meaning "condition of being affected with stigmata" is from 1897.
stigmatization (n.)
1822, noun of action from stigmatize.
stigmatize (v.)
1580s, "to brand or tattoo," from Medieval Latin stigmatizare, from Greek stigmatizein, from stigmat-, stem of stigma (see stigma). Meaning "to blemish" is from 1610s (figurative), 1630s (literal). Related: Stigmatized; stigmatizing.
stile (n.)
Old English stigel, stile "device for climbing, ladder," related to stigen "to climb," from Proto-Germanic *stig- "to climb" (see stair). An arrangement to allow persons to pass but not sheep and cattle.
stiletto (n.)
1610s, "short dagger with a thick blade," from Italian stiletto, diminutive of stilo "dagger," from Latin stilus "pointed writing instrument" (see style (n.)). Stiletto heel first attested 1953.
still (n.2)
c. 1200, "a calm," from still (adj.). Sense of "quietness, the silent part" is from c. 1600 (in still of the night). Meaning "a photograph" (as distinguished from a motion picture) is attested from 1916.
still (adv.)
"even now, even then, yet" (as in still standing there), 1530s, from still (adj.) in the sense "without change or cessation, continual" (c. 1300); the sense of "even, yet" (as in still more) is from 1730.
still (v.)
Old English stillan "to be still, have rest; to quiet, calm, appease; to stop, restrain," from stille "at rest" (see still (adj.)). Cognate with Old Saxon stillian, Old Norse stilla, Dutch, Old High German, German stillen. Related: Stilled; stilling.
still (adj.)
Old English stille "motionless, stable, fixed, stationary," from Proto-Germanic *stilli- (source also of Old Frisian, Middle Low German, Middle Dutch stille, Dutch stil, Old High German stilli, German still), from PIE root *stel- "to put, stand," with derivatives referring to a standing object or place (see stall (n.1)). Meaning "quiet, calm, gentle, silent" emerged in later Old English. Euphemistic for "dead" in stillborn, etc. Still small voice is from KJV:
And he said, Go forth, and stand upon the mount before the LORD. And, behold, the LORD passed by, and a great and strong wind rent the mountains, and brake in pieces the rocks before the LORD; but the LORD was not in the wind: and after the wind an earthquake; but the LORD was not in the earthquake: and after the earthquake a fire; but the LORD was not in the fire: and after the fire a still small voice. [I Kings xix.11-13]
Used as a conjunction from 1722.
still (n.1)
"distilling apparatus," 1530s, from Middle English stillen "to distill" (c. 1300), a variant of distillen (see distill).
still life (n.)
1690s, translating Dutch stilleven (17c); see still (adj.) + life (n.).
stillbirth (n.)
also still-birth, 1764, from still (adj.) + birth (n.).
stillborn (adj.)
1590s, from still (adj.) + born. As a noun from 1913; still (n.) in this sense is attested from 1863 in undertaker's slang."
stillness (n.)
Old English stilnes "quiet, silence, peace, release, relaxation;" see still (adj.) + -ness.
stilly (adv.)
Old English stillice; see still (adj.) + -ly (2).
stilt (n.)
early 14c., "a crutch," a common Germanic word (cognates: Danish stylte, Swedish stylta, Middle Low German, Middle Dutch stelte "stilt," Old High German stelza "plow handle, crutch"), though the exact relationship of them all is unclear, from Proto-Germanic *steltijon, from PIE root *stel- "to put, stand" (see stall (n.1)). Application to "wooden poles for walking across marshy ground, etc." is from mid-15c. Meaning "one of the posts on which a building is raised from the ground" is first attested 1690s. As a type of bird with long legs, from 1831. Stilted in the figurative sense of "pompous, stuffy" is first recorded 1820.
stilted (adj.)
1610s, "having stilts," from stilt (n.). That of "elevated or supported by stilts" is from 1820. Figurative sense of "pompous, stuffy, formal and stiff" is first recorded 1820.
Stilton (n.)
1736, cheese made famous by a coaching inn at Stilton on the Great North Road from London, the owner being from Leicestershire, where the cheese was made. Since 1969 restricted to cheese made in Leicester, Derby, and Nottingham counties by members of the Stilton Cheese Makers Association. The place name is in Domesday Book as Stichiltone and probably means literally farmstead or village at a stile or steep ascent.
stimulant (adj.)
1772, from French stimulant or directly from Latin stimulantem (nominative stimulans), present participle of stimulare "to prick, urge, stimulate" (see stimulation). As a noun from 1794.
stimulate (v.)
1610s, "rouse to action," from Latin stimulatus, past participle of stimulare (see stimulation). Related: Stimulated; stimulating.
stimulation (n.)
1520s, "act of pricking or stirring to action," from Latin stimulationem (nominative stimulatio) "an incitement," noun of action from past participle stem of stimulare "prick, goad, urge," from stimulus "spur, goad" (see stimulus).
stimuli (n.)
Latinate plural of stimulus.
stimulus (n.)
plural stimuli, 1680s, originally as a medical term, "something that goads a lazy organ" (often the male member), from a modern use of Latin stimulus "a goad, a pointed stick," figuratively "a sting, a pang; incitement, spur," from PIE *sti- "point, prick, pierce" (see stick (v.)). General sense of "something that excites or arouses the mind or spirit" is from 1791. Psychological sense is first recorded 1894.
sting (n.)
Old English stincg, steng "act of stinging, puncture, thrust," from the root of sting (v.). Meaning "sharp-pointed organ capable of inflicting a painful puncture wound" is from late 14c. Meaning "carefully planned theft or robbery" is attested from 1930; sense of "police undercover entrapment" first attested 1975.
sting (v.)
Old English stingan "to stab, pierce, or prick with a point" (of weapons, insects, plants, etc.), from Proto-Germanic *stingan (source also of Old Norse stinga, Old High German stungen "to prick," Gothic us-stagg "to prick out," Old High German stanga, German stange "pole, perch," German stengel "stalk, stem"), perhaps from PIE *stengh-, nasalized form of root *stegh- "to stick, prick, sting."

Specialized to insects late 15c. Intransitive sense "be sharply painful" is from 1848. Slang meaning "to cheat, swindle" is from 1812. Old English past tense stang, past participle stungen; the past tense later leveled to stung.
sting-ray (n.)
also sting ray, 1620s, from sting + ray (n.2). First in Capt. John Smith's writings: "Stingraies, whose tailes are very dangerous ...."
stinger (n.)
1550s, agent noun from sting (v.). As an animal part, from 1889; earlier in this sense was sting (n.).
stinging (adj.)
c. 1200, present participle adjective from sting (v.). Figurative use from late 14c.
stingy (adj.)
"niggardly, penurious, extremely tight-fisted," 1650s, of uncertain origin, perhaps a dialectal alteration of earlier stingy "biting, sharp, stinging" (1610s), from sting (v.). Back-formation stinge "a stingy person" is recorded from 1905. Related: Stingily; stinginess.
stink (n.)
mid-13c., "strong offensive odor," from stink (v.). Sense of "extensive fuss" first recorded 1812.
stink (v.)
Old English stincan "emit a smell of any kind; exhale; rise (of dust, vapor, etc.)" (class III strong verb; past tense stanc, past participle stuncen), common West Germanic (cognates: Old Saxon stincan, West Frisian stjonke, Old High German stinkan, Dutch stinken), from the root of stench. Old English had swote stincan "to smell sweet," but offensive sense also was in Old English and predominated by mid-13c.; smell now tends the same way. Figurative meaning "be offensive" is from early 13c.; meaning "be inept" is recorded from 1924. To stink to high heaven first recorded 1963.
stink eye (n.)
"dirty look," by 1972, perhaps from Hawaiian slang.
stink-bug (n.)
1869, American English, from stink + bug (n.).
stinker (n.)
as a term of abuse (often banteringly), c. 1600, agent noun from stink (v.); also in the same sense was stinkard (c. 1600). Extended form stinkeroo attested by 1934.
stinkhorn (n.)
type of foul-smelling fungus, 1724, from stink + horn (n.), for its shape.