- I. noun Etymology: Middle English stumpe; akin to Old High German stumpf stump and perhaps to Middle English stampen to stamp Date: 14th century 1. a. the basal portion of a bodily part remaining after the rest is removed b. a rudimentary or vestigial bodily part 2. the part of a plant and especially a tree remaining attached to the root after the trunk is cut 3. a remaining part ; stub 4. one of the pointed rods stuck in the ground to form a cricket wicket 5. a place or occasion for public speaking (as for a cause or candidate); also the circuit followed by a maker of such speeches — used especially in the phrase on the stump II. verb Date: 1581 transitive verb 1. to reduce to a stump ; trim 2. a. dare, challenge b. to frustrate the progress or efforts of ; baffle 3. to clear (land) of stumps 4. to travel over (a region) making political speeches or supporting a cause 5. a. to walk over heavily or clumsily b. stub 3 intransitive verb 1. to walk heavily or clumsily 2. to go about making political speeches or supporting a cause • stumper noun III. noun Etymology: French or Dutch dialect; French estompe, from Dutch dialect stomp, literally, stub, from Middle Dutch; akin to Old High German stumpf stump Date: 1778 a short thick roll of leather, felt, or paper usually pointed at both ends and used for shading or blending a drawing in crayon, pencil, charcoal, pastel, or chalk IV. transitive verb Date: 1807 to tone or treat (a drawing) with a stump
New Collegiate Dictionary. 2001.