stain «stayn», verb, noun.
1. to discolor (something); spot; soil: »

The tablecloth is stained where food has been spilled. Let not women's weapons, waterdrops, Stain my man's cheeks (Shakespeare).

2. Figurative. a) o spot by wrongdoing or disgrace (a person's reputation or honor); blemish; dishonor: »

His crimes stained the family honor. But thoughtless follies laid him low, And stain'd his name (Robert Burns).

b) to corrupt morally; taint with guilt or vice; defile.
3. to color or dye: »

She stained the chair green.

4. to color (a microscopic specimen).
1. to cause a stain or discoloration.
2. to take a stain; admit of staining.
1. a discoloration; soil; spot: »

He has ink stains on his shirt.

2. a natural spot or patch of color different from the background.
3. Figurative. a mark of disgrace; dishonor; stigma: »

His character is without stain. When you know the dream is true And lovely with no flaw nor stain (Robert Graves).

4. a liquid preparation of coloring or dye used especially to color woods and fabrics, by penetrating the pores: »

Paint the table with a brown stain.

5. a dye or pigment used to make visible transparent or very small structures, or to differentiate tissue elements by coloring, for microscopic study: »

... many of the various stains used in microscopic work have a selective effect on bacteria, coloring some species and leaving others more or less unaffected (Fred W. Emerson).

[probably fusion of short form of Middle English distainen (< Old French desteign-, stem of desteindre take out the color, ultimately < Latin dis- off + tingere to dye), and a Scandinavian borrowing (compare Old Icelandic steina to paint)]
stain´a|ble, adjective.
stain´er, noun.
stain´like´, adjective.

Useful english dictionary. 2012.

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Look at other dictionaries:

  • Stain — (st[=a]n), v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Stained} (st[=a]nd); p. pr. & vb. n. {Staining}.] [Abbrev. fr. distain.] 1. To discolor by the application of foreign matter; to make foul; to spot; as, to stain the hand with dye; armor stained with blood. [1913… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Stain — Stain, n. 1. A discoloration by foreign matter; a spot; as, a stain on a garment or cloth. Shak. [1913 Webster] 2. A natural spot of a color different from the gound. [1913 Webster] Swift trouts, diversified with crimson stains. Pope. [1913… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • stain — [stān] vt. [ME stainen, aphetic < disteinen,DISTAIN: sense and form infl. by ON steinn, color, lit., STONE (hence, mineral pigment)] 1. to spoil the appearance of by patches or streaks of color or dirt; discolor; spot 2. to bring shame upon… …   English World dictionary

  • Stain — Stain, v. i. To give or receive a stain; to grow dim. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Stain — ist der Familienname folgender Personen: Johann Friedrich von Stain (1681–1735), braunschweigischer und hessischer Staatsmann Walter Stain (1916–2001), deutscher Politiker Diese Seite ist eine Begriffsklärung zur Unterscheidung mehrerer mit demse …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • stain — [n] spot of dirt, blot, bar black eye*, blemish, blotch, blur, brand, color, discoloration, disgrace, dishonor, drip, dye, infamy, ink spot, mottle, odium, onus, reproach, shame, sinister*, slur, smirch, smudge, spatter, speck, splotch, spot,… …   New thesaurus

  • Stain — Stain, Stadt, so v.w. Stein 2) …   Pierer's Universal-Lexikon

  • stain — I verb attaint, bedaub, befoul, besmear, besmirch, blacken, blemish, blot, blotch, bring reproach upon, color, contaminate, corrupt, damage, daub, debase, defame, defile, detract from, dirty, discolor, discredit, disgrace, dishonor, dye, grime,… …   Law dictionary

  • stain — n *stigma, blot, brand Analogous words: *blemish, defect, flaw: mark, *sign, token: *disgrace, dishonor …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • stain — ► VERB 1) mark or discolour with something that is not easily removed. 2) damage (someone s or something s reputation). 3) colour with a penetrative dye or chemical. ► NOUN 1) a stubborn discoloured patch or dirty mark. 2) a thing that damages a… …   English terms dictionary

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