Definition of steady in English:



  • 1Firmly fixed, supported, or balanced; not shaking or moving.

    ‘the lighter the camera, the harder it is to hold steady’
    ‘he refilled her glass with a steady hand’
    • ‘‘Stay still,’ she said, and held her face steady firmly with one hand.’
    • ‘Relating to waves of movement is what allows us to stay steady and sustain balance.’
    • ‘A strong and steady arm swing will balance upper and lower body usage when you run.’
    • ‘Damia waved her arms frantically, almost losing her balance on her steady horse.’
    • ‘I smiled sheepishly at Loganberry as I tried to hold my glass steady, wipe my jacket and shake his hand all at the same time.’
    • ‘Hold the food steady with the fork whilst cutting it with the knife.’
    • ‘His hand, usually steady, is shaking; he must not let his agitation show.’
    • ‘To mention just two problems: It was next to impossible to hold a telescope steady enough on the heaving deck of a small ship to time the eclipses accurately.’
    • ‘Reaching the centre of the lake again he held his arm steady, keeping the roots still on the surface.’
    • ‘He was able to grab hold of a ledge and when he got a steady footing of his balance he turned to his right to find the drop ship making a slow bank and heading back the path they came.’
    • ‘Casey's sweet swing, marked by steady balance and a complex routine before he settles in for the pitch, is fueled by loads of natural talent.’
    • ‘I held the cup and offered it to Matt, my hand steady as a rock.’
    • ‘There is an uneasy sensation akin to loss of control, a whirlwind that trips my balance, sweeps me off my steady feet and into a foggy daze at odd times of the day.’
    • ‘I switched my flashguns off and held my camera steady for a slow shutter exposure.’
    • ‘He rushed forth with a steady gate, fast but still wary to keep his balance while he negotiated the uncertain terrain beneath his feet.’
    • ‘Reagan advanced on her, holding his gun steady.’
    motionless, still, unshaking, static, stationary, unmoving, sure
    stable, balanced, firm, fixed, secure, secured, fast, safe, immovable, unshakeable, dependable
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    1. 1.1Not faltering or wavering; controlled.
      ‘a steady gaze’
      ‘she tried to keep her voice steady’
      • ‘His lips were tightly pressed together, his eyes wavering to keep steady against hers, and his cheeks were pale.’
      • ‘Swallowing, Daphne feels mesmerized as she stares into his steady gaze.’
      • ‘As pleasure and contentment washed over her, she met his steady gaze, tears of gratitude shining in her eyes.’
      • ‘Who could have known that such this young boy possessed such extraordinary fighting skills, much more have it under steady control?’
      • ‘Rossiter refused to be intimidated and met Bradley's level gaze, steady in his resolve.’
      • ‘Josaitis fixes the audience with her steady gaze.’
      • ‘Its steady gaze tunneled inside me, into my very veins.’
      • ‘Ralph sneered, keeping his icy, steady gaze on me.’
      • ‘I straightened my spine and stood back up upon my wobbly legs, with a steady gaze that was all too familiar to me of how Tommy addressed strangers that disapproved of him.’
      • ‘Nicolas' eyes kept a steady gaze on her, making her decidedly nervous.’
      • ‘Her fingers faltered from its steady clipping as Adam's sarcastic words filled her mind.’
      • ‘Darre turned his cool green eyes on Carl, who faltered under his steady gaze.’
      • ‘John's gaze was steady and unblinking as he stared into his daughter's blazing eyes.’
      • ‘‘There will be a time for grieving later,’ he said, trying to keep his voice steady.’
      • ‘Leaning over the bar his eyes sparkle and his gaze is steady.’
      • ‘The backbeat of the song easily guiding the rock of her hips, her nails raking up the nape of Rae's neck, tangling her fingers through her hair and holding the steady gaze.’
      • ‘When I walk up to the back of a crowd of people his eyes shift to mine and his gaze is steady.’
      • ‘Neither of them looked at me, but kept a steady gaze at each other.’
      • ‘He met the congregation with a steady, unswerving gaze.’
      • ‘I kept my voice steady, but I wasn't even fooling myself, let alone Aaron.’
      fixed, intent, immovable, immobile, unwavering, unfaltering
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    2. 1.2(of a person) sensible, reliable, and self-restrained.
      ‘a solid, steady young man’
      • ‘The Parkville defence suffered an early loss when one of their most steady men in defence, David James had to limp off the field through injury.’
      • ‘I think the vice president was very steady, very calm, paternal in a good way, if you will.’
      • ‘That would allow Isaac Smith to remain in the No.3 role, where he's steady and reliable.’
      • ‘Roberts isn't a great player, but he's steady and dependable, and a coach can be comfortable with him on the field.’
      • ‘Poets are the most down-to-earth, loyal, steady people that have ever been.’
      • ‘He was one of the most sensible and steady people I've known, and not as humourless as that sounds.’
      • ‘Castro gives the team a steady player who should be able to provide reliable backup for Larkin for the remainder of the season, if not longer.’
      • ‘These are not only failures of elementary communication; they are also reactions that fail to inspire confidence that Duncan Smith is steady under pressure.’
      sensible, level-headed, well balanced, balanced, rational, settled, mature, down-to-earth, full of common sense, stolid, calm, equable, imperturbable, reliable, dependable, sound, sober, serious-minded, responsible, serious
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  • 2Regular, even, and continuous in development, frequency, or intensity.

    ‘a steady decline in the national birth rate’
    ‘sales remain steady’
    • ‘For the area, this will ensure the continuation of a steady supply of quality employment opportunities.’
    • ‘Most visitors came to inspect the institution in the first three years of its existence, but a steady stream continued to come in the years following.’
    • ‘Ellis' 4.43m record-setting mark on May 22 continues the steady improvement of her performances over the past five years.’
    • ‘But as Britain celebrated National Apple Day yesterday a steady stream of visitors were calling at the farm before buying apples as well as home-made jams and jellies.’
    • ‘Nevertheless, the market continues to welcome a steady stream of fresh punters looking to beat a tracker and join me in the quest for stock market riches.’
    • ‘During the seventeenth century Ireland, continuing its steady decline, came increasingly under England's rule.’
    • ‘Paul O'Neill continued his steady decline and was dropped from the third slot in the order.’
    • ‘His club have taken him to the rarified heights of the Premiership's top three and the international caps continue to flow in a steady stream.’
    • ‘Dublin continues to attract a steady number of visitors despite the downturn in the tourism industry since the terrorist attacks on New York and Washington in September.’
    • ‘He continues to show steady progress and is developing the confidence necessary to be successful at the position.’
    • ‘Throughout his career he continued to publish a steady stream of high quality research papers right up to the time of his death.’
    • ‘In the junior open U - 18 championship the winner was Cian Kilcullen from Enniscrone who continues to make steady progress in the sport.’
    • ‘The steady decline and deterioration continued at an accelerated pace.’
    • ‘The hostel was in the firing line because of a steady decline in visitor numbers and the need for building refurbishments.’
    • ‘She experienced a steady decline in the frequency of hot flashes during treatment.’
    • ‘Rising demand meant prices were little changed in July following steady declines since February, the survey said.’
    • ‘He remained in Edinburgh until his death, continuing to produce a steady stream of high quality papers up to the time of his death.’
    • ‘The financial results of the bank, which were accepted by the board of directors, reveal that the bank continues to make steady improvements, a press release issued here said.’
    • ‘Ever since this sprawling mansion is thrown open to the public, there is a steady stream of visitors hanging around it - letting their imagination run wild.’
    • ‘Gas prices continued their slow but steady decline.’
    constant, unchanging, changeless, unvarying, invariable, undeviating
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    1. 2.1Not changing; regular and established.
      ‘I thought I'd better get a steady job’
      ‘a steady boyfriend’
      • ‘Soon after, Jack was offered a steady job as a postal worker, but he turned it down in hope that he could support himself solely off of his writing.’
      • ‘Most of us reading this blog, after all, went to college and/or got nice steady jobs because we had enormous social and familial pressure on us to do so.’
      • ‘The father's lack of a steady job, substance abuse, incarceration and domestic violence were among the reasons for not marrying.’
      • ‘My boyfriend at the time was not in a steady job and was confused as well.’
      • ‘I know someone who quit their steady job once because they thought selling property was a breeze and a lot more lucrative than what they were doing.’
      • ‘Unemployment in Argentina has reached depression levels of over 15 percent, with four million workers having no steady jobs.’
      • ‘He has got a steady job, teaching 22 hours a week, 180 days a year.’
      • ‘I had a good job with a steady income and a great place to live in.’
      • ‘With an economic downturn encompassing the last twenty years, those lacking steady jobs in the formal economy now exceed half the work force.’
      • ‘The announcement rocked a town that already has suffered a steady loss of manufacturing jobs to low-wage nations such as China and Mexico.’
      • ‘The daily grind of life, a demanding family, death of a young, pretty niece due to cancer and no steady job has not diminished his zest for life.’
      • ‘The company offers a steady job with decent pay and great benefits after college.’
      • ‘But suddenly, in this economy, nursing looks more attractive, the prospect of a steady job with guaranteed work at the end of a degree.’
      • ‘I've believe the exodus of good steady manufacturing jobs are at the crux of the spiritual disenfranchisement we are experiencing in our nation.’
      • ‘This also explains why he lived in such a crummy hovel - obviously he can't hold down a steady job if he's nuts.’
      • ‘I will also hold a steady job this fall and am lucky because my parents are pretty good about helping me out.’
      • ‘Her previously steady job in a high street bank was wound up recently after branch ‘restructuring’.’
      • ‘Even the only steady job the man's ever had reflects his need to be moving - he was a bush pilot, flying supplies and people in and out of civilization in Northern Quebec.’
      • ‘Finally, I have a steady job and some money saved up.’
      • ‘As soon as he left the unremunerative world of crime for a steady job with the forces of order, he became significantly more intelligent.’
      regular, unchanging, habitual, usual, customary, established, settled, firm, devoted, faithful
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    2. 2.2(of a ship) moving without deviation from its course.
      • ‘As she was going to insert some cream on the laser burn, the ship jolted and the lights flickered and the ship was steady again.’
      • ‘As soon as they got to the peer, Brock and Rainia jumped out and held the boat steady, while Aria and Tyra got out and grabbed everything on the boat.’
      • ‘Commercial shipping has picked up after a quieter January with a steady flow of ships delivering in the port.’
      • ‘The Blue Horizon was six hours away from Nalirra, and Renny had all the lights on the bridge down to a minimum as he concentrated on keeping the ship steady.’
      • ‘He replied rather quickly as he tried to keep the ship steady.’
      • ‘Most of the passengers spent the time on the deck, as the ship was very steady despite the storm threat.’
      • ‘You also know to hang on until the boat is steady again.’
      • ‘These are then used to keep the cruiser steady as water sluices out of the lock.’
      • ‘Setting a spinnaker involves keeping the boat steady with the wind behind while the spinnaker sail is raised.’
      • ‘She strained her shoulder muscles trying to simply keep the ship steady.’
      • ‘In spite of the storm, this enormous and exotic black ship nevertheless manages to stay afloat and steady on its course.’
      • ‘Imagine you are standing on a dock, watching a sailing ship move at a steady rate along a river.’
      • ‘Normal waves played around the boat, as it made steady on its course into the black night.’
      • ‘He set a steady course south, keeping the shore easily in his view.’
      • ‘The boat gamboled on her steady course, sails billowing and emitting brisk, tolling tones as the wind caught them high.’
      • ‘Finally, Keirah set a steady course south, following the river.’
      • ‘The tug and barge had been plying a steady route between the Persian Gulf and Iraq's Khawr Abd Allah waterway for weeks.’
      • ‘The currents were starting to get tricky and keeping the small craft steady was proving to be a real test for the pilot.’
      • ‘The ship continues to sail on that very steady course.’
      • ‘At first it all seems rather gentle as you drift along with the current, the helmsman steering a steady course, the water only occasionally lapping over the sides of your raft.’


  • Make or become steady.

    [with object] ‘I took a deep breath to steady my nerves’
    ‘she's the one steadying influence in his life’
    [no object] ‘by May prices had steadied’
    • ‘I buried my head in my hands and tried to take a few steadying deep breaths to calm my nerves.’
    • ‘Keats spluttered and coughed to full wakefulness, and steadied himself with a stiff brandy.’
    • ‘She interrupted, taking a deep breath and steadying her legs underneath her.’
    • ‘Hands balanced on the windowsill below his waist were the only things steadying him as he leaned outside.’
    • ‘How long it can endure without King Hussein's steadying presence, no one can say.’
    • ‘To Rockmount's credit they steadied, and gradually began to battle their way back into the game.’
    • ‘Prices steadied on Tuesday, but the concern over future shortages sent Asian markets lower.’
    • ‘Larkin steadied himself and blasted in a low drive that looked goalbound.’
    • ‘The breeze steadied as the rain clouds cleared and Zephyr continued a solitary route to the finish line.’
    • ‘Taking a deep breath and steadying herself, she went to answer the summons.’
    • ‘Bligh pressed his head against the wall, cooling himself, steadying his pulse.’
    • ‘Livi almost jumped, but caught herself, steadying the tray on which she was carrying some warm soup and a tuna sandwich.’
    • ‘Cale looked through his scope and took slow deep breaths to lower his heartbeat thus steadying his aim.’
    • ‘Outstripping the York defence, he steadied himself before lashing the ball past Fettis with an unerring finish.’
    • ‘Dozens of police officers rushed over and steadied the car, drawing loud boos from the crowd.’
    • ‘This time, Searle steadied himself, took his time, and won the rubber on his second match point.’
    • ‘The player shortage took its toll on Acorn after the break but Wadsworth steadied the nerves with his fourth try as they hung on to win.’
    • ‘Danny settled down in his seat, closed his eyes and steadied his breathing.’
    • ‘He was bending on his knees, steadying himself with his hand on the floor.’
    • ‘He took a deep breath, steadying his voice as it rose slowly in hysteria.’
    stabilize, make steady, hold steady
    calm, calm down, soothe, quieten, quiet, compose, settle, pacify, lull
    View synonyms


  • Used as a warning to someone to keep calm or take care.

    ‘Steady now! We don't want you hurting yourself’


  • 1informal A person's regular boyfriend or girlfriend.

    ‘his steady chucked him two weeks ago’
    • ‘Gunn's next stop probably will be a rehab facility in Germany, where his unit is based and he has a steady girlfriend.’
    • ‘Prior to that point, I was the one that always had the steady girlfriend.’
    • ‘Right now, I don't have a steady girlfriend, but I'm working on it.’
    • ‘None of them wanted to move, especially Charlie who had a steady girlfriend and wanted to stay with her.’
    • ‘Indeed, we were told that the younger boy in this particular case, who instigated the sex with his friend, now has a steady girlfriend.’
    • ‘Unlike William, he had never had a steady girlfriend, preferring instead to play the field.’
    • ‘He recoiled at the thought of allowing his steady girlfriend, Ms Boyle, from taking up more permanent residence in his home, and they went separate ways earlier this year.’
    • ‘It's been a couple of months and I've moved on, no steady girlfriend but I've been out several times and enjoyed myself.’
    • ‘I remembered he used to go on dates, but I don't remember him ever having a steady girlfriend.’
    • ‘As usual though, I had to go and ruin it - I found a steady girlfriend.’
    • ‘In truth, he had had no steady girlfriends, because they found his personality repulsive.’
    • ‘Mike, being the immature guy that he was, had flings, not steady girlfriends.’
    • ‘Could it be really possible that they haven't considered all the merits of having a steady (not necessarily permanent) boyfriend.’
  • 2A strut for stabilizing a caravan or other vehicle when stationary.

    • ‘Sliding contact between the work piece and its support should be avoided, and the use of roller steadies and running centres is recommended.’


Middle English (in the sense ‘unwavering, without deviation’): from stead + -y. The verb dates from the mid 16th century.