Definition of stoic in English:



  • 1A person who can endure pain or hardship without showing their feelings or complaining.

    • ‘Beth's husband Kevin, a charismatic history teacher, emerges as a stoic, entirely but mutely aware of his wife's distracted love.’
    • ‘We see livestock dotting the hillsides as we climb and I wonder what sort of doughty stoics would choose to farm such challenging country.’
    • ‘He is a noble stoic who is by far the most pure character in the play.’
    • ‘If you are on one end of the bell curve and need minimal drugs to treat your pain, you're a stoic, a good chap.’
    • ‘And it varies hugely and nearly everybody asks that question largely because they're embarrassed, they know about heroes and stoics who can put up with the most awful injuries and not make any complaints.’
    • ‘The ideal stoic would go about life as an actor in a play, playing the roll they are assigned.’
    • ‘My friends and colleagues could not understand how I could be such a stoic in the face of losing out on a four-figure sum.’
    • ‘The modest, by contrast, realise that, in the sum of history and geography, they're but a tiny, passing crater, and the stoics know that human pain has to be suffered and can't just be railed against.’
  • 2A member of the ancient philosophical school of Stoicism.

    • ‘His heroes are the Stoics - especially Epicurus - and Marx.’
    • ‘For the Stoics, the work of the polis and its citizens and the work of the cosmopolis and its citizens are the same: both aim to improve the lives of the citizens.’
    • ‘The Stoics attacked the Categories on the assumption that this treatise is on language and about linguistic expressions.’
    • ‘The ancient Stoics seem to have taken a similar line.’
    • ‘Later ethical theories distinguished them, and the second, more austere position, that of the Stoics, was generally thought to have won in claiming Plato as its ancestor.’
    • ‘A cognitive impression was defined by the Stoics as an impression from what is, stamped and impressed in exact accordance with what is, and such as could not be from what is not.’
    • ‘For doctrines in these areas, he turns to the Stoics and Peripatetics.’
    • ‘Approximately half the entry is on the Greek moralists Socrates, Plato, Aristotle, and the Stoics.’
    • ‘There is much in all this that strikes a familiar chord, appearing in some ways as an extension of classical doctrines of self-determination that reach back to the Stoics and beyond.’
    • ‘As a concept, it has affinities with Plato's anima mundi (world soul), and the Stoics ' pneuma.’
    • ‘For the Stoics were thorough-going empiricists and believed that sense-impressions lie at the foundation of all of our knowledge.’
    • ‘On his view, the development which takes a human being to virtue does not involve a transformation of the kind posited by the Stoics.’
    • ‘The ancient Greek Stoics seem to me to have done better with these distinctions than the Epicureans, on whom I focus in this paper.’
    • ‘The Stoics developed a sophisticated psychological theory to explain how the advent of reason fundamentally transforms the world view of human beings as they mature.’
    • ‘The view that emotions are irrational was eloquently defended by the Epicureans and Stoics.’
    • ‘There are some important parallels in the Hellenistic Stoics and Epicureans to certain themes in Zhuangzi.’
    • ‘One school of ancient philosophers, the Stoics, developed a distinctive view of Medea as part of their ethics and psychology.’
    • ‘Since 1993, I've gone through a great deal of philosophy, in particular works by the Roman stoics such as Marcus Aurelius, Seneca, and Cicero.’
    • ‘Here the Stoics might sound like Plato and Aristotle.’
    • ‘He was a member of a group known in ancient times as the Stoics, and he is chiefly remembered as the author of Epistulae Morales ad Lucilium, generally known in English as Letters from a Stoic.’


  • 1

    ‘a look of stoic resignation’
    another term for stoical
    • ‘But Statham's delivery is strictly grim and stoic, utterly without humour.’
    • ‘I sat and watched with some mates and we all thought the second half performance, whilst brave and stoic, was also cheating the fans.’
    • ‘I cannot say these things matter-of-factly: they are too painful, and I have never been stoic.’
    • ‘So other emotions, such as being scared or stoic, could come as a surprise.’
    • ‘It would take more than controversy over his age to keep this stoic ex-mayor of Lancaster down.’
    • ‘The movie detective is an archetypal Western hero: stoic, logical, and doggedly determined.’
    • ‘And in that kind of instance you would need a judiciary that is stout and stoic in the face of differences of opinion with the regime.’
    • ‘The speaker and the guide walked out of the shelter, in their stoic marching stance.’
    • ‘Showing no signs of senility, only stoic, hard-won wisdom, The Cave is a work of a master.’
    • ‘His mood seems to have been one of stoic resignation, rather than despair, as reported by James Sharp, a leading Scots Presbyterian.’
    • ‘I suspect that if you have been trained to be stoic, this probably diminishes your ability to sense pain.’
    • ‘Some looking stoic, others with tears quietly trickling down their caved in faces.’
    • ‘She was silent and stoic through her trial, but she is talking now.’
    • ‘The Britons, in contrast, appeared stoic, taking the mentality of que sera sera.’
    • ‘Michael sat in one of the chairs against the wall, trying his best to look strong and stoic, but the worry in his eyes was his betrayer.’
    • ‘Students who were not placed in their schools of choice were not as stoic.’
    • ‘Marilyn was a stoic and determined woman, with a clear vision.’
    • ‘Mostly they were stoic as the tiniest details of the family's nightmare were revealed.’
    • ‘All the handmaidens cheered, but the Lady stood to the back of them, her face stoic.’
    • ‘He and his pals are stoic in the face of any criticism of their team.’
  • 2Of or belonging to the Stoics or their school of philosophy.

    ‘the Stoic philosophers’
    ‘Seneca preached Stoic abstinence’
    • ‘Crates was a teacher of Zeno, who founded the Stoic school of philosophy.’
    • ‘For example, he gives as a thumbnail of Stoic philosophy that one should not value anything that anyone else has the power to take away from you.’
    • ‘Neither Aristotle nor Plato envisioned their cosmic cyclicity as requiring any detailed endless repetition such as the multiple births of Socrates, though some Stoic philosophers did adopt this drastic position.’
    • ‘In general, the prominent characteristic of Stoic philosophy is moral heroism, often verging on asceticism.’
    • ‘For anyone drawn to Stoic philosophy, for example, bodily suffering could not finally be of great significance.’
    • ‘This line of argument would seem to lead either to benign Stoic conclusions of mutual indifference, or to finding tyrants and reigns of terror no threat to individual freedom.’
    • ‘Since it was the Stoics who, in antiquity, developed a sentence logic, by contrast with Aristotle's term logic, it would appear that Boethius's treatise on hypothetical syllogisms is the tributary of Stoic logic.’
    • ‘Philo made a synthesis of the two systems and attempted to explain Hebrew thought in terms of Greek philosophy by introducing the Stoic concept of the Logos into Judaism.’
    • ‘This unity in the soul is related to another widely held Stoic teaching, i.e., the unity of the virtues.’
    • ‘So well-versed was he in the works of the Stoics that he went on to teach Stoic philosophy as a fellow of The Hoover Institution.’
    • ‘If such impressions do not exist, it follows immediately in the context of Stoic epistemology that nothing can be known.’
    • ‘As we have seen, only virtue is good and choiceworthy, and only its opposite, vice, is bad and to be avoided according to Stoic ethics.’
    • ‘I found the juxtaposition naive, given my background in Stoic philosophy of managing the passions in public life.’
    • ‘This metaphor invites us to see an analogy between one's training in Stoic ethics as preparatory for living the philosophic life and someone's training in athletics as preparatory for entering the contest in the arena.’
    • ‘In moral philosophy he followed the Stoic teachings and gave opinions on virtue, evil, the soul, and emotions.’
    • ‘However, through the introduction of the ‘Spirit,’ upon which Stoic philosophy has a great impact, this transcendence is counterbalanced by the immanence of Wisdom.’
    • ‘Students of philosophy in the ancient world could (unless they were Epicureans) expect to study both Aristotelian and Stoic logic, which were seen as complementary, although there could be disputes as to which was the more important.’
    • ‘The Stoic school of philosophy existed for about five centuries, from its founding around 300 BCE to the second century CE.’
    • ‘But there is no reason to think that Arcesilaus subscribed to these Stoic views, since we have slight, but sufficient evidence that he argued against every aspect of Stoic epistemology and psychology.’
    • ‘In it he stresses the value of the Bible as a moral guide and the failure of Stoic philosophy.’


Late Middle English: via Latin from Greek stōïkos, from stoa (with reference to Zeno's teaching in the Stoa Poikilē or Painted Porch, at Athens).