Definition of stall in English:

stall

noun

  • 1A stand, booth, or compartment for the sale of goods in a market or large covered area.

    ‘fruit and vegetable stalls’
    • ‘You'd expect to see a lot of market stalls, but there weren't many this year, and the street vendors were mainly selling food.’
    • ‘An article in another paper wrote about the sale of fireworks from a stall in a flea market in Port of Spain.’
    • ‘People think buying copies is a victimless crime, but the idea that they are ‘just’ being sold by a couple of guys at a market stall or car-boot sale is misleading.’
    • ‘Dawn's parents Doreen and Raymond Stewart have run a jewellery stall on the Monday market for 16 years and their only daughter followed them into the business.’
    • ‘Allen Booth has run his fish stall on the town market for nearly 50 years.’
    • ‘He had found work in the local market filling the stall and selling vegetables.’
    • ‘Around the central area will be a selection of market stalls, lawn areas, sports activity zones and play areas.’
    • ‘There are a number of sweet snacks on sale at market and roadside stalls; puff-puff are a sort of doughnut and chin-chin are crispy morsels of sweetened dough.’
    • ‘Tens or even hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of stones will be on view at rickety little tables and stalls in the market, and in most cases the stones are genuine.’
    • ‘One of the culinary favourites here is asparagus and some of the stalls in the vegetable market were piled high with this succulent delicacy.’
    • ‘To compensate for the weather which dries the skin and chaps the lips, there are goodies in the form of freshly grilled kababs in the stalls around Russel Market and elsewhere.’
    • ‘Roadsides are full of market stalls with fruit, vegetables, meat and other items.’
    • ‘The ambassador was saluted on her way, and she even stopped to buy some fruits from a market stall.’
    • ‘Traders at Moreton market abandoned their stalls as crowds of shoppers rushed for cover and flood water rushed down the High Street.’
    • ‘Suwarni sells friend banana to market stalls, her husband sells coconuts.’
    • ‘It was market day and the stalls stood in rows with local people in colourful ethnic clothes squeezing together in throngs, full of happiness.’
    • ‘In fact, you don't even have to leave Bangkok to be entertained and amazed by the variety of restaurants, food stalls and markets on display.’
    • ‘However, it is very difficult to eat badly in Taipei, and dozens of fine restaurants and market stalls are within an easy walk.’
    • ‘But even now the stores include counters based on market stalls, selling fruit, bread and more Morrison-made pies and sausages.’
    • ‘The charity, which relies heavily on donations from tourists, has a stall at Fethiye market every Tuesday with further information and photographs of their work.’
    stand, table, counter, booth, kiosk, compartment
    View synonyms
  • 2An individual compartment for an animal in a stable or cowshed, enclosed on three sides.

    • ‘Once clinically stable, each animal was returned to its stall.’
    • ‘After the barn was raised, I built a cowshed and horse stall on the east side.’
    • ‘Inside the milking parlor, Lifeline milker Clint Weidkamp coaxes a new heifer into the first of four stalls.’
    • ‘Sows housed in pens and stalls had similar mean values across all measures with each analysis that was used.’
    • ‘From inside I could hear the animals shifting in their stalls, ready to be set free for the day.’
    • ‘Cate put Midnight back in his stall in the stable, then slipped back into the manor, concealing her riding clothing in the back of her wardrobe.’
    • ‘A copper and an odd crimson brown stallion occupied two stalls on the far end, and three mares were stabled a few stalls down from Asa and across the row.’
    • ‘This configuration recalls the form of traditional livestock barns with a center walkway and animal stalls to each side.’
    • ‘In contrast to moving from outdoors to neck tethers, moving from outdoors to indoor gestation pens or stalls did not inhibit litter size.’
    • ‘The use of specialized animal stalls and tethers is accepted as a science-based industry standard of management.’
    • ‘Sighing, the girl entered the stables and walked down the rows of stalls, greeting each individual horse by name.’
    • ‘The 18 free stalls used were divided into six sets, excluding both stalls at each end of the row.’
    • ‘Because of individual horse stalls, manual cleaning with a fork or shovel and wheelbarrow, tractor loader, or trailer is common.’
    • ‘There stood eight stalls in the stable, six of which contained animals.’
    • ‘Bales of hay were piled everywhere, and relatively crude stalls housed various farming animals, from horses to pigs.’
    • ‘Circulating or urinary cortisol concentrations were similar when sows were housed in stalls or groups with three to six pigs per pen.’
    • ‘There must have been at least forty stalls in the huge stable, and the loft above had rolled stacks of hay.’
    • ‘The animals were confined to drylot paddocks and fed the assigned concentrate in individual feeding stalls.’
    • ‘I grinned at him, took Viento's reins, and led him out of his stall, across the stables.’
    • ‘Farrowing rate for sows in individual stalls was equal to or superior to sows in other systems.’
    pen, coop, sty, corral, enclosure, compartment, cubicle
    View synonyms
    1. 2.1 A stable or cowshed.
      • ‘Stocks Market, on the site of the Mansion House, had been in existence for some centuries but was increasingly challenged by Covent Garden, started as a few sheds and stalls.’
    2. 2.2North American A marked-out parking space for a vehicle.
      ‘a parking stall’
      • ‘The current parking ratio of 0.26 stalls per faculty/staff/student is above the national average of 0.23.’
      • ‘Traffic orders ban parking on the setts on market days until 6.45 pm - but the regulations are widely ignored with drivers parking up as soon as a stall is cleared.’
      • ‘The new Sonic has 30 parking stalls and six walk-up stations as well as drive-thru service.’
      • ‘Sheldon, however, had made it back and noticed Caleb's black BMW still in its parking stall.’
      • ‘The local McDonald's reserves parking stalls for horse-drawn buggies.’
      • ‘Redevelopment has since reduced it to 443 parking stalls.’
      • ‘Identify the free stall users with parking passes and after a year the city can decide based on use whether to add or reduce the number of free stalls, she said.’
      • ‘Lot 50B contains 222 stalls currently and is designated for reserve staff parking.’
    3. 2.3 A cage-like compartment in which a horse is held immediately prior to the start of a race.
      • ‘Pacemaker Starbourne raced well clear from the stalls with Frankie Dettori's Kazzia pulling along the chasing pack.’
      • ‘New York Racing Association assistant starter Fred Lewis pulled a colleague from underneath a thrashing horse who had flipped in a starting stall at Saratoga Race Course.’
      • ‘The horses charge out of the stalls although Wintertide is caught napping and immediately drops a few lengths.’
      • ‘The well-fancied Diaghilev loses his chance at the very beginning of the race when he dallies in the stalls.’
      • ‘There is drama before the race as Red Power rears up and throws off Johnny Murtagh in front of the stalls - the horse is withdrawn from the race.’
      • ‘A central computer then allocates a saddle cloth number to each horse and determines the stall from which it will start.’
      • ‘The start had seen some unscheduled drama as Guest Connections was pulled out of the race after rearing up in the stalls - leaving jockey Tony Culhane on the ground.’
      • ‘The horse was reluctant to enter the stalls but came through with a storming late run to edge out Touch of the Blues by three-quarters of a length with Century City third.’
      • ‘Unlike National Hunt, all Flat races start from stalls.’
      • ‘You have got to keep your horse relaxed so you go into the stalls as quietly as possible.’
    4. 2.4 A compartment for one person in a set of toilets, shower cubicles, etc.
      • ‘Another door revealed a bathroom with only a shower stall, sink and a toilet.’
      • ‘There were four sinks to the left, and four toilets with stalls near the showers.’
      • ‘There was even an attached bathroom with sinks, toilets and shower stalls.’
      • ‘I saw the manager cleaning the men's bathroom, including picking up discarded toilet paper off the floor of a toilet stall.’
      • ‘And always wear a pair of plastic flip-flops to prevent picking up common bacteria found in the shower stalls.’
      • ‘Wrapping a towel around herself, she stepped out of the shower stall and walked into the warm room, searching for the shirt Kyle had given her.’
      • ‘They have no football locker room, sharing showers and stalls with their other sports teams.’
      • ‘Stepping into the last bathroom stall, I lock the door behind me.’
      • ‘Pushing the door open with his elbow, he entered a small, well-kept lavatory with a white painted stall in one corner and two sinks on the other wall.’
      • ‘You see, our apartment only has a shower stall with no tub.’
      • ‘She took a quick shower in one of the moldy shower stalls, and put on her other clothes.’
      • ‘Remember bathtubs and shower stalls may require support framing.’
      • ‘Dry towels hung from a plastic rack on the linoleum wall across from the shower stalls.’
      • ‘I went to the shower stall and turned the knob to hot, and pulled it out, waiting for the water to come flowing through it.’
      • ‘Twenty minutes later, I had checked every stall in the aforementioned bathroom and every other bathroom in the building.’
      • ‘For example, you test the water temperature with your hand before stepping into the shower stall.’
      • ‘Some even claim that the toilet stalls, with leather walls and designer lights, are the nicest toilets in Sofia.’
      • ‘For optimum household cleanliness and health, clean and disinfect your shower stalls and glass shower doors at least once a week.’
      • ‘After brushing my teeth, I stepped into the shower stall and ran the tap.’
      • ‘Taking off her clothes and stepping into the shower stall, she pulled the curtain across and turned on the hot water.’
  • 3A fixed seat in the choir or chancel of a church, enclosed at the back and sides and often canopied, typically reserved for a particular member of the clergy.

    • ‘Yesterday's ceremony was the formal installation of the king, who was appointed to a stall - or seat - in St George's Chapel, home of the order.’
    • ‘The choir stalls were moved from the chancel to their present position in the nave in 1961 to make room for the bishop's throne and canon's stalls.’
    • ‘Above the church stalls to the left of the altar, however, hangs a small painting that is deceptively unassuming.’
    • ‘There were so many choir wannabes that they filled the choir platform, the stalls and the circle seats - and outnumbered the audience confined to the upper galleries.’
    • ‘It was in her clumsiness that when she moved to turn around after the hymn she knocked her music folder expertly over the edge of the pew stall and onto the marble floor out of her reach.’
    • ‘When James Bell, the recently consecrated Bishop of Knaresborough was an honorary Canon of Ripon Cathedral he occupied the stall of St Hilda.’
  • 4stallsBritish The seats on the ground floor in a theatre.

    as modifier ‘a stalls seat’
    • ‘For performances on December 21 to 24, the stalls and dress circle are almost sold out, but grand circle seats are available.’
    • ‘I was being taken to the stalls and given one of the best seats in the place.’
    • ‘One evening she had sat in the Tsar's Box, not in the regular management seats in the stalls.’
    • ‘As it happens, there was a ticket mix-up and during the break we were moved from circle seats down to the stalls.’
    • ‘Some feel that 20 for a seat in the stalls is a bit steep.’
    • ‘He then left the row behind us and returned to his seat somewhere towards the back of the stalls.’
    • ‘It is a measure of this play's success that the call resounds; the wooden courtroom roof arches high above the stalls, and up into the shadows of the audience.’
    • ‘From the moment Walter van Dyk started from the back of the stalls to sing the opening of The Threepenny Opera, I felt a frisson which lasted to the end of the evening.’
    • ‘The action is seen as it would be from a good seat in the theatre stalls.’
    • ‘Outside, the touts are charging £90 for a seat in the stalls, with no shortage of takers.’
    • ‘All the world may well be a stage, but you still expect to find newspaper theatre critics in the stalls rather than treading the boards.’
    • ‘Seated halfway back in the stalls, I thought the harpsichord sounded distractingly amplified.’
    • ‘In my own case, I usually purchase seats in the stalls for six adults and five children costing in the region of £100.’
    • ‘A new grid above the front stalls allows objects to be flown over the first three rows.’
    • ‘I remember crying in the back stalls when Storm Boy lost gallant Mr Percival.’
    orchestra, parterre
    View synonyms
  • 5An instance of an engine, vehicle, aircraft, or boat stalling.

    ‘speed must be maintained to avoid a stall and loss of control’
    • ‘Failing one engine, he brought the aircraft to a stall to stop the rotation of the failed engine's prop.’
    • ‘If approaching a stall at racing altitude there would be no chance of recovery.’
    • ‘This was especially important for students who were learning carrier landings which were carried out at slow speed and close to the stall.’
    • ‘He pulled up into a stall, kicked it into a left hand spin and I started to count.’
    • ‘The Texan was seen to hesitate momentarily, then slide back on its tail and wing over in recovery from a hammerhead stall.’
    • ‘My instructor told me to go fly it by myself out in the practice area to get the feel of the aircraft: Do some stalls, spin a few times, but have a lot of attitude.’
    • ‘Fly the airplane to the bottom of the envelope, and stalls are a non-event, a good indication of landing manners as well.’
    • ‘When the pilot attempted to fly in a vertical direction to create a stall, the aircraft was forced into a spin.’
    • ‘We also know that once we break the stall, the ailerons are our best roll mechanism.’
    • ‘The suggestion in the NTSB's report was that the pilot got into a cross-control stall.’
    • ‘Having got through the psychological barrier of throttling back to idle, I allowed the aircraft to decelerate to the stall.’
    • ‘After he took it up, felt out the controls and made a couple of stalls, he shot several landings.’
    • ‘This is done to keep you from pulling back on the stick when the ‘G’ forces hit you, and cause an accidental stall on takeoff.’
    • ‘If you're deep into the stall when the wing pays off, you can even drop it in a few feet without bouncing.’
    • ‘You'll have more precise control of the plane and can use things like engine stalls to your advantage.’
    • ‘But if the stick is moved back when the airplane is very close to the stall the aircraft will not pitch up much, if at all.’
    • ‘The 29 working units are frequently plagued by flameouts, engine stalls, generator failures and general mechanical problems.’
    • ‘Investigators had to rely on other things to figure out what caused the airplane to experience an aerodynamic stall at a critically low altitude.’
    • ‘This action recovered the aircraft from the deep stall.’
    • ‘Cherokee stalls have long been notable for their supremely gentle nature, sometimes, hardly a stall at all.’

verb

  • 1no object (of a motor vehicle or its engine) stop running, typically because of an overload on the engine.

    ‘her car stalled at the crossroads’
    • ‘At that moment, the car stalled, leaving us stuck in the middle of a waterlogged street.’
    • ‘The engine stalled at the first corner we drove round, but we got it working again soon.’
    • ‘He looked at the dashboard and, alarmed at the galaxy of flashing lights, realized that the car had stalled.’
    • ‘Cars stalled in traffic cause more pollution than cars on the open road.’
    • ‘If you've let the fuel run down to rock bottom very often, you might find your car stalling and sputtering.’
    • ‘The old jeep's engine stalled briefly before coming on again at full power.’
    • ‘Yet the rattling continues and if it's not fixed, eventually something will give and the engine will stall.’
    • ‘At first I couldn't think why the car had simply stalled and tried to restart it several times to no avail.’
    • ‘But after the refuelling and tyre change was complete, the car stalled twice as Leitzinger attempted to leave the pits.’
    • ‘Although the car never stalled for me, I was able to duplicate the customer's complaint of trouble on steep grades.’
    • ‘‘It was like I was looking at it in slow motion when all those cars were going by,’ said Lehto, who had to restart the car when the engine stalled on the spin.’
    • ‘Because torrential rain had flooded the road, the driver and passengers stayed on-board after the engine had stalled.’
    • ‘Meanwhile, a bus stalled at the Harmony shelter, forcing the driver to move the passengers to another bus.’
    • ‘Unfortunately, the car stalled as I went to pull out of the pit, which put us in the back of the field.’
    • ‘The school bus stalls, sending Ralph walking back to the nearest gas station.’
    • ‘Like with a manual car, if you didn't have a clutch to disconnect the wheels from the engine, when the car stops moving the engine would stall.’
    • ‘I had the clutch pedal depressed but the car slowly started to creep forward and the engine stalled.’
    • ‘My car stalled twice on the way there and then someone had parked in my spot.’
    • ‘We had decided not to change the steering wheel at the first stop because it can mess up the electronics, but after the car stalled we changed it then had to wait for the system to reset.’
    • ‘Then the unthinkable happened: her car stalled.’
    1. 1.1 (of an aircraft) stop flying and begin to fall because the speed is too low or the angle of attack too large to maintain adequate lift.
      • ‘We learned to takeoff, land, spin, stall, perform precision turns, lazy eights, pylon eights and aerobatics.’
      • ‘You are about ten knots above stalling as always - a stall now could be fatal.’
      • ‘This mechanism prevents stalling at high angles of attack, generating a greater degree of aerodynamic lift and aiding maneuverability in slow, turning flight.’
      • ‘The aircraft can stall and fall and there is nothing you can do about it.’
      • ‘At no speed the glider stalled and because of the left turn my left wing went down first.’
      • ‘While still attempting to not stall or over speed, I began a turn in the general direction of the divert fields.’
      • ‘I would sit back, stall, take my feet off the rudder pedals and, using the stick to keep level, losing altitude as we fluttered down to earth.’
      • ‘A sudden decrease in head wind or increase in tail wind can cause an aircraft to stall.’
      • ‘If it has an altitude-hold feature, it may cause the airplane to stall by pitching the nose up to maintain your selected altitude.’
      • ‘On his second operational flight in a Sopwith Pup, he stalled just after take off at Dunkirk and crashed the aircraft, breaking his leg and gashing his head.’
      • ‘Huge flaps, functioning like parachutes, lifted on each wing, and the Concorde's airspeed dropped swiftly as the aircraft stalled.’
      • ‘On standby instruments alone, he would have to avoid stalling or overspeeding the aircraft.’
      • ‘He reported that shortly after initiating the turn, the airplane appeared to stall, and rotated to the left.’
      • ‘You would be flying along, at cruise, do nothing, and suddenly the glider would stall because of tail gusting.’
      • ‘Most GA aircraft today have wings designed to stall at or near the wing root first, then progress out toward the wingtips.’
      • ‘The planes won't have enough lift to fly at that altitude, and they'll stall and fall back to the ground.’
      • ‘An investigation found that crew errors led to the aircraft stalling and crashing during the approach to the airport.’
      • ‘I was afraid that the glider would stall when I was close to the ground and spin in.’
      • ‘The need to quickly stall the wing probably restricts the use of this mechanism to low-speed flight, when the wings are at a high angle of attack and more easily stalled.’
      • ‘In the worst-case scenario, the pilot pitches up to maintain altitude, gets too slow, stalls and spins to the ground.’
    2. 1.2Sailing Have insufficient wind power in the sails to give controlled motion.
      • ‘A sailing ship that becomes stalled with its bow to the wind is said to be ‘in irons.’’
      • ‘The sail coefficient of lift increases to its maximum and we are on the point of stalling the sail.’
      • ‘Rey and his crew skillfully brought the boat to a near-standstill, pointed into the wind and on the verge of stalling out.’
    3. 1.3with object Cause to stall.
      • ‘In flight, there was less than a ten knot difference between a speed so fast that it would rip the wings off the aircraft and a speed so slow that it would stall the engine.’
      • ‘The Madrid based driver stalled the engine at the start of the second stage.’
      • ‘Rice was leading 100 laps into the race when he stalled his car's engine in the pits.’
      • ‘Green said the men ordered her to climb back into the vehicle but they had stalled the car and were unable to restart it.’
      • ‘On October 30, just as the flood waters were creeping up in Ryedale, she drove her Peugeot car through a deep puddle and stalled the engine.’
      • ‘I lost a few positions when I stalled the engine during the second pit stop.’
      • ‘When turbulence is kicked up by its rotors, it can actually stall the rotors, cause rolling sensations, even more.’
      • ‘The chaos left in his wake, stalled the boat's forward momentum and Farash grimly pulled hard on both rudders to keep the craft from turning about in midstream.’
  • 2Stop or cause to stop making progress.

    no object ‘his career had stalled, hers taken off’
    with object ‘the government has stalled the much-needed project’
    • ‘But, as the environment slowly ebbed away as an election issue, progress stalled.’
    • ‘Perhaps it is unfair to pre-empt what will come out at the meeting, but at this stage progress has been stalled so many times, and for so many reasons, that people are bound to be sceptical.’
    • ‘Casey is a man in a hurry, obsessed with gadgets, determined, for instance, to shop only on-line, but his progress has stalled a little this year.’
    • ‘When the two first started working together, Graham's career had stalled.’
    • ‘But she is simply not in the class to challenge at this stage of a career which has stalled badly in recent seasons.’
    • ‘His career stalled, Rodgers unenthusiastically enrolled at Columbia, following his brother's pre-med path.’
    • ‘Two years ago her career stalled when she suffered a double fracture of the right ankle.’
    • ‘But since then progress has once again stalled with no resolution in sight.’
    • ‘Progress has been stalled by the dispute with the surface rights owner.’
    • ‘On the first day, the assault fell three miles short of the Pierson line, while further south they had made better progress but were stalled at the Miteirya Ridge.’
    • ‘In several countries there is a concern that road safety progress has stalled.’
    • ‘But that deal could be stalled by an offer from the Co-op, according to weekend reports.’
    • ‘Carter's career has been stalled by two elbow surgeries, which cost him all of the 1997 and 2001 seasons.’
    • ‘Asked what he would do if the attempt to resurrect his career stalled, he said: ‘I would be at a loss.’’
    • ‘I won't discuss my other projects in progress that are stalled and waiting.’
    • ‘But as soon as those mergers were announced, progress on any deal stalled.’
    • ‘It did not win the approval of the professors, and Gray's career as a muralist stalled before it had even started.’
    • ‘Coun Merry's political progress stalled after the death of his wife, Dr Feryal Raja, in 1995, but he came back strongly as deputy in 1998.’
    • ‘Manjula Herath, a second year player whose progress has been stalled by injury, is the left arm spinner.’
    • ‘Work on the Mysore-Bangalore expressway has again been stalled by a stay order from the Supreme Court.’
    obstruct, impede, interfere with, hinder, hamper, block, interrupt, hold up, hold back, stand in the way of, frustrate, thwart, baulk, inhibit, hamstring, sabotage, encumber, restrain, slow, slow down, retard, delay, stonewall, forestall, arrest, check, stop, halt, stay, derail, restrict, limit, curb, put a brake on, bridle, fetter, shackle
    View synonyms
    1. 2.1no object Speak or act in a deliberately vague way in order to gain more time to deal with something; prevaricate.
      ‘she was stalling for time’
      • ‘He said Jasbir was being pressurised to go ahead with the marriage but had been stalling for time.’
      • ‘I hesitated, stalling for time, but she would have none of it.’
      • ‘Or is the Court simply stalling for time until a new chief justice is appointed?’
      • ‘‘Quit stalling Dan and tell me’ impatience clear in her tone.’
      • ‘I was stalling for time, not sure how to reply to this question.’
      • ‘The husband cleared his throat, stalling for time in which to think of a polite response.’
      • ‘She was stalling for time, avoiding the moment when she would tell him that it was over.’
      • ‘Industry critics say they are stalling for time to think up more positive ways of presenting farmed fish.’
      • ‘Michael's voice rose in hesitation as he stretched his neck and scratched, stalling for time.’
      • ‘Phillip shuffled papers nervously, stalling for time.’
      • ‘The government is stalling on the estuary while it tries to find a way through its foreshore and seabed dilemma.’
      • ‘A single car meandered down the street, an executive returning home late from work, stalling for time before he entered the house of the angry wife.’
      • ‘‘You're stalling for time,’ she said wisely, correctly deducing what I was trying to do as well as what I had done.’
      • ‘‘Truth,’ she decided, drawing out the word as if stalling for time.’
      • ‘You're not really looking for something you're stalling for time.’
      • ‘A contract was drawn up, but Billie-Jean kept stalling on exchange and settlement dates.’
      • ‘The government is stalling on this reasonable request.’
      • ‘She was trying to find the right words to say and was stalling for time.’
      • ‘I was stalling for time that I knew I didn't have.’
      • ‘‘I don't know,’ I said, stalling for time as I tried to process the information she'd thrown at me in rapid-fire.’
      use delaying tactics, play for time, temporize, gain time, hang back, hang fire, hold back, procrastinate, hedge, beat about the bush, drag one's feet, delay, filibuster, stonewall
      View synonyms
    2. 2.2with object Delay or divert (someone) by prevarication.
      ‘stall him until I've had time to take a look’
      • ‘I had left a little later than I wanted to due to the fact that my mother felt like stalling me.’
      • ‘By the time I even thought about stalling him, it was too late.’
      • ‘Jessie and Paul had a quick chat in the kitchen whilst Alora stalled Lisa by talking to her in the living room.’
      • ‘Start making scenes in his shop and he'll stall you for months with references to far-away bureaucrats without whose say-so nothing can move.’
      • ‘She laughed at the question and knew that I was trying to stall her.’
      • ‘The crowd was stalling the police, and as Roni was pulled into a back room, they heard gunfire begin.’
      • ‘Barnabas is still trying to stall him, but Roger starts heading upstairs, telling Barnabas he is tired and Barnabas can let himself out.’
      • ‘She had stalled the police before; she wasn't sure how much longer she could continue to stall them.’
      • ‘Michael rose to leave but his opponent's voice stalled him.’
      • ‘So, while the other officers stalled him, I managed to slip in underneath the cabin and creep up from behind him.’
      • ‘This direct approach got the job done much faster than using the appeal channels that are designed to stall you and make you powerless.’
      • ‘She is really pestering me for the information, and so far I have been able to stall her, but not for long, so a quick answer to my problem, please.’
      • ‘So when Michel popped the question, she said the first thing that came into her head as a way of stalling him: ‘Only if the King of Tonga marries us.’’
      • ‘‘And you are just trying to stall me,’ she said, shoving the jeans in my direction.’
      • ‘‘I'm sorry to have stalled you, your highness,’ she added, addressing Cedric.’
      • ‘I was trying to stall him, until my desperate and panicked mind could think of one way out of this.’
      • ‘Coyne said he waited until the bell rang so students could change classes without seeing Mayer in the hallway, adding he ‘could understand why Mayer thought he was stalling him.’’
      • ‘The Medical staff of the local maternity hospital have been less than helpful, stalling her and not giving her a scan to see how far on the pregnancy is.’
      • ‘When he winced again, she knew that he wasn't stalling her.’
      • ‘You both know it, and that's why he's stalling you as long as he can.’
      delay, divert, distract
      View synonyms
  • 3with object Put or keep (an animal) in a stall, especially in order to fatten it.

    ‘the horses were stalled at Upper Bolney Farm’
    • ‘Stallions that are stalled tend to move about more and sometimes roll more frequently then when they are turned out.’
    • ‘One more row was behind these stalls on both sides, allowing a maximum of eighty horses to be stalled in the large place.’
    • ‘‘You could see where the horses had been stalled,’ Andy recalls of that first visit to the barn.’
    • ‘A horse that is stalled, as some police horses are, would have no opportunity to develop this vice.’

Phrases

  • set out one's stall

    • Display or assert one's abilities or position.

      ‘he has set out his stall as a strong supporter of free trade’
      • ‘There was a degree of scepticism when we set out our stall in September that we would manage to deliver the deal to shareholders before Christmas, so it is gratifying.’
      • ‘Thomas Keneally sets out his stall in a covering letter that arrives with the review copy of his latest work of fiction.’
      • ‘Both sides set out their stall from the opening whistle, setting a frenetic pace, which they somehow managed to maintain right to the end.’
      • ‘‘He will essentially be setting out his stall in a much more detailed way than he has been able to do so far,’ one aide said.’
      • ‘‘We have sharpened our prices and set out our stall to sell quality merchandise,’ he added.’
      • ‘Activists in the Campaign for Yorkshire set out their stall in York city centre to speak to shoppers and gather support.’
      • ‘‘We came here to set out our stall and win the game,’ said Leishman in one of his less poetic utterings.’
      • ‘The conductor sets out his stall with a deliberately paced opening.’
      • ‘I would face off with anybody, I never back down once I have set out my stall, but this is back-breaking.’
      • ‘Anyone setting out his stall specifically for a big marlin, tuna, or shark, would be very unfortunate indeed not to achieve something of boasting size.’

Origin

Old English steall ‘stable or cattle shed’, of Germanic origin; related to Dutch stal, also to stand. Early senses of the verb included ‘reside, dwell’ and ‘bring to a halt’.

Pronunciation

stall

/stɔːl/