late 14c., verbal noun from stand (v.). In the sense of "rank, status," it is first recorded 1570s. Sense of "state of having existed for some time" is 1650s. Legal sense is first recorded 1924. Sports sense is from 1881. To be in good standing is from 1789. Standing room is from 1788, originally in reference to theaters. SRO for "standing room only" is attested by 1890.
A young gentleman attempting to get into Drury-lane play-house, found there was such a croud of people that there was no room. Just without the door, a damsel of the town accosted him with 'can't you get in, sir?' to which he replied in the negative. 'If you'll go along with me, resumed she you may get in very easily, for I can furnish you with very good standing room.' ["The Banquet of Wit, or A Feast for the Polite World," London, 1790]
1610s, "projecting, prominent, detached," from out- + standing (adj.) "having an erect position, upright." Figurative sense of "conspicuous, striking" is recorded from 1830. Meaning "unpaid, unsettled" is from 1797.
The verb outstand is attested in 16c. as "endure successfully, hold out against," now obsolete; the intransitive sense of "to project outward from the main body, stand out prominently" is by 1755 and probably is a back-formation from outstanding. Earlier were outstonden "to stand up" (mid-13c.); outstonding (verbal noun) "a prominence or protuberance" (early 15c.), but these seem not to have survived Middle English. Related: Outstandingly.
1590s, "state of standing still; firmness," from French consistence (Modern French consistance) "a standing fast," from Medieval Latin consistentia, literally "a standing together," from Latin consistentem (nominative consistens), present participle of consistere "to stand firm, take a standing position, stop, halt," from assimilated form of com "with, together" (see con-) + sistere "to place," causative of stare "to stand, be standing" (from PIE root *sta- "to stand, make or be firm"). Meaning "coherence, solidity, state or degree of density" is recorded from 1620s.
"stoppage of circulation," 1745, from medical Latin, from Greek stasis "a standing still, a standing; the posture of standing; a position, a point of the compass; position, state, or condition of anything;" also "a party, a company, a sect," especially one for seditious purposes; related to statos "placed," verbal adjective of histēmi "cause to stand," from PIE root *sta- "to stand, make or be firm."
"upright slab," usually inscribed, 1820, from Greek stēlē "standing block, slab," especially one bearing an inscription, such as a gravestone, from PIE *stal-na-, suffixed form of root *stel- "to put, stand, put in order," with derivatives referring to a standing object or place. Related: Stelar.