Find the word definition

Crossword clues for staple

Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English
a staple crop (=an important one that forms a big part of people's diet)
▪ staple crops such as rice and wheat
sb’s staple diet (=the food that a group of people or type of animal normally eats)
▪ For hundreds of years potatoes were their staple diet.
staple gun
▪ Attacks on the immorality and decadence of aristocratic culture were the staple diet of purity tracts and speeches.
▪ The staple diet for most of the coral fishes should be a good dry food.
▪ It is hard and lacks nutrients and yet is the panda's staple diet.
▪ Worms are a staple diet and these have been in short supply due to the summer drought.
▪ They could catch and eat more of their staple diet - worms and insects - surviving in accordance with the laws of natural selection.
▪ In living-rooms throughout the country, violence, gratuitous and graphic, is often the staple diet of the video generation.
▪ Reindeer moss, the staple diet of the deer herds, was also said to have disappeared completely.
▪ Retail prices of staple foods and consumer goods remained unchanged.
▪ The staple food of mankind in the Middle Ages was bread, and his staple drink ale or water.
▪ They may also be following the migration of their staple food, anchovies.
▪ The fortification of staple foods with folic acid to prevent neural tube defects may be unwisely delayed on this account.
▪ A recently-introduced ban on the fishing of sand eels, the birds' staple food, has been credited with the success.
▪ It rapidly became a staple, and has remained the major crop throughout the modern period.
▪ The Food Lion suit has been closely watched because hidden-camera reports have become a popular staple of network newsmagazine shows.
▪ It was what we know as recitative and it became the staple of opera in musica.
▪ So what should have become a staple of the science diet has turned into the Christmas turkey of the curriculum.
▪ Ice skating has long been a staple of ABC's sports programming.
▪ Tortillas are a staple of Mexican cooking.
▪ Alternative medicine is now a staple of continuing education at Harvard University Medical School.
▪ It is a staple of the multilateral trading system, and is extended by the United States to all but a handful.
▪ Rape is a staple in pagan myth, and killing still more commonplace.
▪ The length of the cable then rests on the staples and can always be lifted off for painting and cleaning.
▪ There are some assured visual touches, a staple of any Czech film.
▪ As a schoolboy prank he leaned forward to staple the boy in front's jacket to his chair.
▪ Finally, staple them together and flip through them to see them move.
▪ Industry magazines have thinned down so much with the collapse of internet advertising that they can now be stapled rather than bound.
▪ Select the ones that have held bottles, because they will be stapled at the bottom and are much stronger.
▪ There was a credit-card slip stapled to the receipt and I tucked both in my pocket for later inspection.
▪ We had to staple a polythene vapour barrier to the rafters of a pitched roof.
▪ In Brazil, the black bean is a staple crop.
The Collaborative International Dictionary

staple \sta"ple\, v. t. [imp. & p. p. stapled (-p'ld); p. pr. & vb. n. stapling.]

  1. To sort according to its staple; as, to staple cotton.

  2. To fasten together with a staple[9] or staples; as, to staple a check to a letter.

Douglas Harper's Etymology Dictionary

late 14c., "to fix with a (large) staple," from staple (n.1). In the wire paper fastener sense, by 1898. Related: Stapled; stapling.


"bent piece of metal with pointed ends," late 13c., from Old English stapol "post, pillar, trunk of a tree, steps to a house," from Proto-Germanic *stapulaz "pillar" (cognates: Old Saxon stapal "candle, small tub," Old Frisian stapul "stem of a tooth," Dutch stapel "a prop, foot-rest, seat," Middle Low German stapel "block for executions," German Stapel "stake, beam"), from *stap-, from PIE stebh- (see staff (n.)).\n

\nA general Germanic word that apparently evolved a specialized meaning in English, though OED finds the connection unclear and suggests the later sense in English might not be the same word. Meaning "piece of thin wire driven through papers to hold them together" is attested from 1895.


"principal article grown or made in a country or district," early 15c., "official market for some class of merchandise," from Anglo-French estaple (14c.), Old French estaple "counter, stall; regulated market, depot," from a Germanic source akin to Middle Low German stapol, Middle Dutch stapel "market," literally "pillar, foundation," from the same source as staple (n.1), the notion perhaps being of market stalls behind pillars of an arcade, or else of a raised platform where the king's deputies administered judgment.\n

\nThe sense of "principle article grown or made in a place" is 1610s, short for staple ware "wares and goods from a market" (early 15c.). Meaning "principle element or ingredient in anything" is from 1826. Meaning "fiber of any material used for spinning" is late 15c., of uncertain origin, and perhaps an unrelated word.


Etymology 1

  1. 1 Relating to, or being market of staple for, commodities. 2 Established in commerce; occupying the markets; settled. 3 Fit to be sold; marketable. 4 Regularly produced or manufactured in large quantities; belonging to wholesale traffic; principal; chief. n. 1 (context now historical English) A town containing merchants who have exclusive right, under royal authority, to purchase or produce certain goods for export; also, the body of such merchants seen as a group. 2 (context by extension English) Place of supply; source. 3 The principal commodity produced in a town or region. 4 A basic or essential supply. 5 A recurring topic or character. 6 Short fiber, as of cotton, sheep’s wool, or the like, which can be spun into yarn or thread. 7 Unmanufactured material; raw material. v

  2. (context transitive English) To sort according to its staple. Etymology 2

    n. 1 A wire fastener used to secure stacks of paper by penetrate all the sheets and curling around. 2 A wire fastener used to secure something else by penetrating and curling. 3 A U-shaped metal fastener, used to attach fence wire or other material to posts or structures. 4 One of a set of U-shaped metal rods hammered into a structure, such as a piling or wharf, which serve as a ladder. 5 (context mining English) A shaft, smaller and shorter than the principal one, joining different levels. 6 A small pit. 7 A district granted to an abbey. vb. (context transitive English) To secure with a staple.

  1. n. (usually plural) a necessary commodity for which demand is constant [syn: basic]

  2. material suitable for manufacture or use or finishing [syn: raw material]

  3. a short U-shaped wire nail for securing cables

  4. paper fastener consisting of a short length of U-shaped wire that can fasten papers together


v. secure or fasten with a staple or staples; "staple the papers together" [ant: unstaple]


adj. necessary foods or commodities; "wheat is a staple crop"

Staple (fastener)

A staple is a type of two-pronged fastener, usually metal, used for joining or binding materials together. Large staples might be used with a hammer or staple gun for masonry, roofing, corrugated boxes and other heavy-duty uses. Smaller staples are used with a stapler to attach pieces of paper together; such staples are a more permanent and durable fastener for paper documents than the paper clip.


Staple may refer to:

Staple (band)

Staple is a Christian Hard Rock/ Post-Hardcore group from Mechanicsburg, Ohio. Staple was founded in 2000 when the members met at Rosedale Bible College in Ohio.

Staple (2004 album)

Staple is an album released by the band Staple.

Staple (EP)

Staple EP is an EP released by the band Staple.

Staple (wool)

A wool staple is a naturally formed cluster or lock of wool fibres and not a single fibre. Very many staples together form a fleece.

  • Image of the staples on the sheep (first external link below)

The cluster of wool fibres is made by a cluster of follicles. The natural cluster of wool is held together because individual fibres have the ability to attach to each other so that they stay together. When removed from the sheep the underside of the fleece shows all its distinct individual staples.

For other textiles, the staple, having evolved from its usage with wool, is a measure of the quality of the fibre with regard to its length or fineness.

Staple (textiles)

A staple is a fibre of a standardized length and may be of any composition, but a wool staple is an independent natural cluster of fibres, not a single fibre. A continuous fibre such as natural silk or synthetic is known as a filament rather than a fibre.

Usage examples of "staple".

Billboards lined the walls, stapled and tacked with colloquia notices, assistantship postings, apartments to share.

Hawkeye dissected the bronchus up to where- the trachea divides and applied a stapling device which saves sewing it by hand.

Lindeth called at Staples to leave compliment cards, she told him, with a provocative look under her lashes, that his cousin, learning that although she was an accomplished horsewoman in the saddle she had never found anyone capable of teaching her how to handle the reins in form, had begged to be allowed to offer his services.

He relates how he had been asked to retire from the Mayoralty of the Staple beyond the seas, and to give up the charters and other muniments which the several towns had obtained at considerable cost.

Staples, for Courtenay told Jack that the party had not broken up till past midnight, and that when it came to playing Jackstraws the Nonesuch had them all beat to flinders, even Miss Trent, who had such deft fingers.

Piles of books, periodicals, offprints, Xeroxed sheets of stapled or loose paper, folded or rolled graphs and charts and tables and spreadsheets.

I was lucky it missed the tendons, but it still took the medic nine staples to close the wound, plus orthostat glue to seal the cut bone.

The staple material, porphyritic trap, shows scatters of quartz and huge veins, mostly trending north-south: large trenches made, according to the guides, by the ancients, and small cairns or stone piles, modern work, were also pointed out to us.

Jardine made no attempt to disguise the truth that opium was the staple of his trade, or that his precautionary measures were designed to temporarily allay the fears of the Chinese officials.

About six months later, Helena Landless is to join Neville, who is watched at intervals by Jasper, who, again, is watched by Grewgious as the precentor lurks about Staple Inn.

She had never used a stapler before, so she sometimes stapled her fingers by mistake, which hurt quite a bit.

Some little rubber practical-joke-type flies, the blue-bellied kind that live on filth, are stapled in a raisinesque dispersal over the red Concavity.

She peered over the drape to see the face of the woman whose body she had just stapled shut.

Shaz picked up another pile of stapled photocopies and passed them round.

The bridge systems whooped alert status into their ears and momentary shock stapled every man to his place.