Dictionary Definition of 'stern'
Displaying seriousness, strictness, or firmness.
"His stern gaze made it clear that he was not to be taken lightly."
Detailed Meaning of 'stern'
When someone is described as stern, they typically exhibit a no-nonsense attitude, often characterized by a lack of warmth or leniency. A stern individual might have a serious facial expression, maintaining a composed and resolute demeanor. They tend to adhere strictly to rules, regulations, or principles, and may be uncompromising in their expectations. Sternness can be associated with authority figures, such as parents, teachers, or bosses, who enforce discipline and demand obedience. While sternness can evoke a sense of intimidation or fear, it can also be an expression of strength and the ability to command respect. Ultimately, the adjective "stern" conveys a sense of seriousness and firmness, reflecting a strong and unwavering character.
Examples of 'stern' in a Sentence
1. The stern teacher demanded complete silence in the classroom.
2. The captain's stern instructions kept the crew focused during the storm.
3. The stern warning from the coach motivated the team to work harder.
4. She received a stern reprimand for her repeated tardiness.
5. The judge had a stern expression as he delivered the sentence.
6. The CEO's stern leadership style set high standards for the company.
History and Etymology of 'stern'
The adjective 'stern' has its origins in Old English and Old High German. In Old English, the word 'styrne' meant severe or strict, and in Old High German, 'stern' had a similar meaning. Both of these words conveyed the idea of displaying seriousness, strictness, or firmness in demeanor or character. Over time, 'stern' made its way into Middle English and retained its sense of seriousness and strictness. Today, when we describe someone or something as 'stern,' we are evoking the notion of a resolute and unyielding attitude, emphasizing the seriousness or severity of their demeanor or actions.
Quiz Categories Containing 'stern'