From stem to stern
Stem Stem (st[e^]m), n. [AS. stemn, stefn, st[ae]fn; akin to OS. stamn the stem of a ship, D. stam stem, steven stem of a ship, G. stamm stem, steven stem of a ship, Icel. stafn, stamn, stem of a ship, stofn, stomn, stem, Sw. stam a tree trunk, Dan. stamme. Cf. {Staff}, {Stand}.] 1. The principal body of a tree, shrub, or plant, of any kind; the main stock; the part which supports the branches or the head or top. [1913 Webster]

After they are shot up thirty feet in length, they spread a very large top, having no bough nor twig in the trunk or the stem. --Sir W. Raleigh. [1913 Webster]

The lowering spring, with lavish rain, Beats down the slender stem and breaded grain. --Dryden. [1913 Webster]

2. A little branch which connects a fruit, flower, or leaf with a main branch; a peduncle, pedicel, or petiole; as, the stem of an apple or a cherry. [1913 Webster]

3. The stock of a family; a race or generation of progenitors. ``All that are of noble stem.'' --Milton. [1913 Webster]

While I do pray, learn here thy stem And true descent. --Herbert. [1913 Webster]

4. A branch of a family. [1913 Webster]

This is a stem Of that victorious stock. --Shak. [1913 Webster]

5. (Naut.) A curved piece of timber to which the two sides of a ship are united at the fore end. The lower end of it is scarfed to the keel, and the bowsprit rests upon its upper end. Hence, the forward part of a vessel; the bow. [1913 Webster]

6. Fig.: An advanced or leading position; the lookout. [1913 Webster]

Wolsey sat at the stem more than twenty years. --Fuller. [1913 Webster]

7. Anything resembling a stem or stalk; as, the stem of a tobacco pipe; the stem of a watch case, or that part to which the ring, by which it is suspended, is attached. [1913 Webster]

8. (Bot.) That part of a plant which bears leaves, or rudiments of leaves, whether rising above ground or wholly subterranean. [1913 Webster]

9. (Zo["o]l.) (a) The entire central axis of a feather. (b) The basal portion of the body of one of the Pennatulacea, or of a gorgonian. [1913 Webster]

10. (Mus.) The short perpendicular line added to the body of a note; the tail of a crotchet, quaver, semiquaver, etc. [1913 Webster]

11. (Gram.) The part of an inflected word which remains unchanged (except by euphonic variations) throughout a given inflection; theme; base. [1913 Webster]

{From stem to stern} (Naut.), from one end of the ship to the other, or through the whole length.

{Stem leaf} (Bot.), a leaf growing from the stem of a plant, as contrasted with a basal or radical leaf. [1913 Webster]


The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • from stem to stern — (from) stem to stern completely. We overhauled the car from stem to stern. Related vocabulary: from top to bottom Etymology: based on the literal meaning of from the stem to the stern (= from the front end to the back end of a ship) …   New idioms dictionary

  • from stem to stern — ► from stem to stern from one end to the other, especially of a ship. Main Entry: ↑stem …   English terms dictionary

  • from stem to stern — from top to bottom, from head to tail    The 64 250 GTO was Enzo s masterpiece: Ferrari from stem to stern! …   English idioms

  • from stem to stern — phrasal : throughout, thoroughly * * * from stem to stern 1. From one end of a vessel to the other 2. Throughout • • • Main Entry: ↑stem * * * from stem to stern phrase from one end to the …   Useful english dictionary

  • from stem to stern — American from one end of something to the other. We overhauled the car from stem to stern …   New idioms dictionary

  • from stem to stern — from one end to the other, especially of a ship. → stem …   English new terms dictionary

  • from stem to stern — from one end to the other …   English dictionary

  • from stem to stern — throughout, from one end to another …   English contemporary dictionary

  • from stem to stern — phrasal throughout, thoroughly …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • stem to stern — (from) stem to stern completely. We overhauled the car from stem to stern. Related vocabulary: from top to bottom Etymology: based on the literal meaning of from the stem to the stern (= from the front end to the back end of a ship) …   New idioms dictionary

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