Date: 1200-1300
Origin: Probably from Old French estale 'standing still, settled', from estal 'standing place'


1 bread or cake that is stale is no longer fresh or good to eat [≠ fresh]:
French bread goes stale (=becomes stale) very quickly.
stale cake
2 air that is stale is not fresh or pleasant [≠ fresh]:
the smell of stale smoke
3 not interesting or exciting any more:
stale jokes
Other marriages might go stale, but not theirs.
4 if you get stale, you have no new ideas, interest, or energy, because you have been doing the same thing for too long:
If you stay in the job for more than 10 years, you get stale.
He was becoming stale and running out of ideas.
staleness noun [uncountable]

Dictionary results for "stale"
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