Main definitions of stunt in English

: stunt1stunt2

stunt1

verb

[WITH OBJECT]
  • Prevent from growing or developing properly:

    ‘some weeds produce chemicals that stunt the plant's growth’
    figurative ‘the recovery of our industries is stunted by lack of funds’
    ‘an emotionally stunted young woman’
    • ‘The radiation that stunted the growth of her tumor is now crippling her mind.’
    • ‘Her growth had been stunted by a childhood disease.’
    • ‘While some of the 10 chicks seized died before coming to the zoo, one, whose growth was stunted, died here.’
    • ‘She was born in October 2002 at Burnley General Hospital with a mystery condition that has stunted her growth.’
    • ‘The condition can cause stunted growth and mental disabilities, but with only about 2,000 sufferers worldwide, the search for a cure is extremely difficult to fund.’
    • ‘Many of the children also have stunted growth and become mentally retarded.’
    • ‘Feeding milk itself becomes a problem, leading to stunted growth.’
    • ‘More than a third of all children who live to their first birthday show signs of severely stunted growth brought on by malnutrition and infectious diseases.’
    • ‘After the dry summer that we just had, when growth is stunted, photosynthetic energy is directed into colourful pigment production due to lack of sufficient water, creating more spectacular colours.’
    • ‘Affected children usually have stunted physical growth, as well as irreparably retarded mental development.’
    • ‘Pusztai reported that the rats that were fed genetically modified potato suffered stunted growth, damaged organs and impaired immune systems.’
    • ‘The rare condition affects his heart, eyes, throat, stunts his growth and development, results in urinary abnormalities and can result in behavioural problems.’
    • ‘Cannas, chrysan-themums, dahlias, begonias and cosmos have all done well but the Impatiens grew too leggy and nibbling by rabbits has stunted the growth of heliotrope, Helichrysum and Nicotiana.’
    • ‘So even if a smoker does develop stunted growth, respiratory conditions or Lung Cancer at least they won?’
    • ‘This is a pure stand of baldcypress, their funny knees like stunted growth reaching up three or four feet, and then perhaps breaking into feathery needles.’
    • ‘We are only too familiar with anorexia and bulimia nervosa among young girls, and we know that these conditions can lead to stunted growth, fertility problems and psychological difficulties.’
    • ‘Towards the bog's centre, 20-year-old pines reach heights of just three-feet, their growth stunted by the bog's acidic soils created by the sphagnum.’
    • ‘It is ensured that only minimum nutrients are provided to these trees for it facilitates stunted growth.’
    • ‘Lesley, a frail girl born with a heart defect which stunted her growth and left her in poor health, was found 10 miles from her home.’
    • ‘In children the problems of poor vitamin and mineral absorption can cause stunted growth and dental problems if the condition is not recognised.’
    small, little, tiny, undersized, undersize, diminutive, dwarf, dwarfish, pygmy
    baby
    wee
    inhibit, impede, hamper, hinder, restrict, retard, slow, curb, arrest, check, stop
    View synonyms

Origin

Late 16th century (in the sense ‘bring to an abrupt halt’): from dialect stunt ‘foolish, stubborn’, of Germanic origin; perhaps related to stump.

Pronunciation

stunt

/stʌnt/

Main definitions of stunt in English

: stunt1stunt2

stunt2

noun

  • 1An action displaying spectacular skill and daring:

    ‘the stunt involved jumping out of a hot-air balloon while attached to a piece of elastic’
    [as modifier] ‘the display is by some of the world's top stunt fliers’
    • ‘The musical, set in a Big Top, features gravity-defying stunts and slapstick clowning as it portrays the story of American showman PT Barnum.’
    • ‘The most thrilling displays were the equestrian jumps and the motorcycle stunts.’
    • ‘Following the delivery to that company, the aircraft was flown around the world as a promotional stunt.’
    • ‘In addition to these protective rules, we recommend evaluation of the height thrown, the mandatory use of landing mats for these stunts, and improvement of the skills of the spotters.’
    • ‘The team consists of six daring riders who perform a whole range of stunts from high jumps to wheelies on motorcycles, quad bikes and three-wheelers.’
    • ‘In order to execute yesterday's daring stunt, I was obliged to make a special journey to WH Smith to buy some felt pens - only to discover that they are no longer stocked.’
    • ‘The stunt required Chan to jump on to a tree from a high castle wall, but he missed his mark and landed head first on rocky ground.’
    • ‘Spectacular aerial stunts and jumps seem slightly out of place.’
    • ‘In 1939, George became a barnstormer pilot flying a Waco, learning all the tricks of the trade in stunt work and aerobatics.’
    • ‘The lantern procession headed finally for Rothay Park, where Hot Stuff, a trio of fire jugglers, thrilled the crowds with spectacular stunts before the start of the firework display.’
    • ‘Bone-headed training stunts and car and helicopter crashes dominate but somewhere in the wreckage is Colin Farrell in his second film release in quick succession.’
    • ‘They could take a flight in a helicopter, watch ferret racing, visit a fun dog show, and watch displays of gun dogs going through their paces or model helicopters doing stunts.’
    • ‘In 1973, Dean was killed while performing an aerial stunt at a show in Shelby, Ohio.’
    • ‘Carefully done, night flight in single-engine airplanes isn't a crazy stunt; it can be the most fun you'll ever have.’
    • ‘Because they had 7 boats that did this role they just used the number system, most of the boats had 440 engines in them and they were built extremely heavy for jumping and stunts.’
    • ‘If you enjoy car chases, spectacular stunts, fighting, first-person shooting games without much thinking and strategy, then this is your game.’
    • ‘Like Harold Lloyd, he made ‘big’ pictures filled with spectacular stunts that showed off his superb athletic abilities.’
    • ‘The spectacular stunts of a top military motorcycle display team took centre stage at the annual Army Open Day in York.’
    • ‘Its first display included daredevil stunts on motorbikes with performers jumping through fire and over each other from ramps, and a trick cyclist jumping over a box of dynamite.’
    • ‘They were locked in part because of concerns about suicides, daredevil stunts and possible theft or vandalism of the millions of dollars worth of broadcasting equipment on the roof.’
    feat, exploit, trick, antic, caper
    coup, act, action, deed
    tour de force
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 Something unusual done to attract attention:
      ‘the story was spread as a publicity stunt to help sell books’
      • ‘The Queen, who attended church as normal, was told about the incident, the latest in a string of publicity stunts by the civil rights group.’
      • ‘You certainly can't deny Sir Richard a quirk for high-profile publicity stunts, from cross-dressing to circumnavigating the globe in a balloon.’
      • ‘What the world needs from economists are sophisticated hedging strategies, not glib publicity stunts.’
      • ‘I can't help suspecting that these are, if not deliberate publicity stunts, hoped for or welcomed opportunities for press coverage.’
      • ‘He fast gained a reputation for publicity stunts, such as persuading elderly survivors to recount their Holocaust experiences on his German media ‘road show’.’
      • ‘As publicity stunts go, this one was bound to cause outrage.’
      • ‘Back in the 20s and 30s, businesses tried to advertise themselves by pulling dangerous publicity stunts.’
      • ‘‘This is not what we wanted to happen, this is not the outcome we expected,’ said Maher, who is well known for his publicity stunts.’
      • ‘Personally, I'm skeptical about this supposed ‘search’ since it has all the smell of being just a publicity stunt.’
      • ‘It is a reminder there's really nothing new about the activities of Greenpeace et al.; people have been engaging in spectacular stunts to get their views across for a very long time indeed.’
      • ‘Naturally, the first thing I thought was that this was a publicity stunt to gain attention.’
      • ‘However, association president Phillip Reid says the announcement is a stunt to attract more publicity to the service and justify its cost.’
      • ‘It leads to harsh behaviour which teenagers display on roads by involving themselves in life-taking stunts.’
      • ‘There was little fanfare or heated canvassing among candidates, and even the democratic camp, which had put up nine hopefuls, was short of publicity stunts.’
      • ‘That is why Dali's importance as an artist confounds all those facile publicity stunts, his dubious political allegiances and his avaricious pursuit of wealth.’
      • ‘California founded the celebrity culture, and as publicity stunts go, running for governor is on the cheap and easy side of the spectrum.’
      • ‘She's their panacea, the be-all and end-all of publicity stunts, an icon ready made for media and the furthering of agendas.’
      • ‘Somebody who thinks carving the name of her fiancé into her body with a razor blade for her wedding might need to find ways to top her own scandalous stunts.’
      • ‘They are participating in a publicity stunt to draw attention to Anglicare's Winter Appeal.’
      • ‘The two, members of an environmental group, said their stunt was to draw attention to a campaign to save the rainforest.’

verb

[NO OBJECT]
  • Perform stunts, especially aerobatics:

    ‘agile terns are stunting over the water’

Origin

Late 19th century (originally US college slang): of unknown origin.

Pronunciation

stunt

/stʌnt/