firm vs stiff what difference

what is difference between firm and stiff

English

Pronunciation

  • (General American) IPA(key): /fɜɹm/, [fɝm]
  • (Received Pronunciation) IPA(key): /fɜːm/
  • Rhymes: -ɜː(ɹ)m

Etymology 1

From Italian firma (signature), from firmare (to sign), from Latin firmare (to make firm, to confirm (by signature)), from firmus (firm, stable). The contemporary sense developed in the 18th century simultaneously with German Firma (business, name of business). There are conflicting statements in the literature as to which of the two languages influenced which.

Noun

firm (plural firms)

  1. (Britain, business) A business partnership; the name under which it trades.
  2. (business, economics) A business enterprise, however organized.
  3. (slang) A criminal gang, especially based around football hooliganism.
Derived terms
  • The Firm
Translations

Etymology 2

From Middle English ferme, from Old French ferme, from Latin firmus (strong, steady). Doublet of dharma.

Adjective

firm (comparative firmer, superlative firmest)

  1. Steadfast, secure, solid (in position)
  2. Fixed (in opinion).
  3. Insistent upon something, not accepting dissent.
    He wanted to stay overnight, but I was firm with him and said he had to leave today.
  4. Durable, rigid (material state)
    firm flesh; firm muscles, firm wood; firm land (i.e. not soft and marshy)
Derived terms
Translations

Verb

firm (third-person singular simple present firms, present participle firming, simple past and past participle firmed)

  1. (transitive) To make firm or strong; fix securely.
  2. (transitive) To make compact or resistant to pressure; solidify.
  3. (intransitive) To become firm; stabilise.
  4. (intransitive) To improve after decline.
  5. (intransitive, Australia) To shorten (of betting odds).
  6. (transitive, Britain, slang) To select (a higher education institution) as one’s preferred choice, so as to enrol automatically if one’s grades match the conditional offer.
Translations

Further reading

  • Firm in the Encyclopædia Britannica (11th edition, 1911)

Anagrams

  • FRIM, fMRI, fmri, frim

German

Etymology

From Latin firmus.

Pronunciation

  • IPA(key): /fɪʁm/

Adjective

firm (comparative firmer, superlative am firmsten)

  1. (somewhat dated) experienced, well versed

Declension

Further reading

  • “firm” in Duden online

Polish

Noun

firm f

  1. genitive plural of firma

Zoogocho Zapotec

Etymology 1

Borrowed from Spanish firma.

Noun

firm

  1. signature

Derived terms

  • chgoꞌo firm
  • choꞌo firm

Etymology 2

Borrowed from Spanish firme.

Adjective

firm

  1. firm, fixed

References

  • Long C., Rebecca; Cruz M., Sofronio (2000) Diccionario zapoteco de San Bartolomé Zoogocho, Oaxaca (Serie de vocabularios y diccionarios indígenas “Mariano Silva y Aceves”; 38)‎[2] (in Spanish), second electronic edition, Coyoacán, D.F.: Instituto Lingüístico de Verano, A.C., pages 220


English

Etymology

From Middle English stiff, stiffe, stif, from Old English stīf, from Proto-Germanic *stīfaz (compare West Frisian stiif,
Dutch stijf, Norwegian Bokmål stiv, German steif), from Proto-Indo-European *steypós (compare Latin stīpes, stīpō, from which English stevedore).

Pronunciation

  • IPA(key): /stɪf/
  • Rhymes: -ɪf

Adjective

stiff (comparative stiffer, superlative stiffest)

  1. (of an object) Rigid; hard to bend; inflexible.
    • “A tight little craft,” was Austin’s invariable comment on the matron; []. ¶ Near her wandered her husband, orientally bland, invariably affable, and from time to time squinting sideways, as usual, in the ever-renewed expectation that he might catch a glimpse of his stiff, retroussé moustache.
  2. (figuratively, of policies and rules and their application and enforcement) Inflexible; rigid.
  3. (of a person) Formal in behavior; unrelaxed.
  4. (colloquial) Harsh, severe.
  5. (of muscles or parts of the body) Painful as a result of excessive or unaccustomed exercise.
  6. Potent.
  7. (informal) Dead, deceased.
  8. (of the penis) Erect.
  9. Having a dense consistency; thick; (by extension) Difficult to stir.
    Adding too much peanut butter to your Peanut Sauce recipe may cause your sauce to turn out too stiff.
  10. (cooking, of whipping cream or egg whites) Beaten until so aerated that they stand up straight on their own.
    beat the egg whites until they are stiff
  11. (mathematics) Of an equation: for which certain numerical solving methods are numerically unstable, unless the step size is taken to be extremely small.
  12. (nautical) Keeping upright.
  13. (golf) Of a shot: landing so close to the flagstick that it should be very easy to sink the ball with the next shot.
    • 1968, William Price Fox, Southern Fried Plus Six: Short Works of Fiction (page 219)
      I go all out, go for the long ball, the stiff shots to the pin, aim for the back of the cup.

Quotations

  • For quotations using this term, see Citations:stiff.

Derived terms

  • bored stiff, scared stiff
  • stiff-lipped, stiff upper lip
  • stiffy

Translations

Noun

stiff (countable and uncountable, plural stiffs)

  1. (slang) An average person, usually male, of no particular distinction, skill, or education, often a working stiff or lucky stiff.
    A Working Stiff’s Manifesto: A Memoir of Thirty Jobs I Quit, Nine That Fired Me, and Three I Can’t Remember was published in 2003.
  2. (slang) A person who is deceived, as a mark or pigeon in a swindle.
    She convinced the stiff to go to her hotel room, where her henchman was waiting to rob him.
  3. (slang) A cadaver; a dead person.
  4. (slang) A flop; a commercial failure.
    • 1994, Andy Dougan, The actors’ director: Richard Attenborough behind the camera (page 63)
      If the movie was a stiff it wasn’t any of their specific faults. They were all in it together and they were jobbed in and jobbed out for two weeks and gone and they got a pile of money for their efforts.
    • 2016, Ralph J. Gleason, Toby Gleason, Music in the Air: The Selected Writings of Ralph J. Gleason
      They never did sell any records. I don’t mean they didn’t sell 100,000. I mean they didn’t sell 5000. Total. National. Coast-to-coast. The record was a stiff.
  5. (US, slang) A person who leaves (especially a restaurant) without paying the bill.
  6. (US, slang, by extension) A customer who does not leave a tip.
  7. (blackjack) Any hard hand where it is possible to exceed 21 by drawing an additional card.
  8. (finance, slang) Negotiable instruments, possibly forged.
  9. (prison slang) A note or letter surreptitiously sent by an inmate.

References

  • (prison slang: a note or letter): 2015, Eric Partridge, A Dictionary of the Underworld: British and American (page 688); 2015, Noel ‘Razor’ Smith, The Criminal Alphabet: An A-Z of Prison Slang

See also

  • bindlestiff
  • See also Thesaurus:corpse, Thesaurus:body

Translations

Derived terms

  • do a bit of stiff
  • working stiff

Verb

stiff (third-person singular simple present stiffs, present participle stiffing, simple past and past participle stiffed)

  1. To fail to pay that which one owes (implicitly or explicitly) to another, especially by departing hastily.
    Realizing he had forgotten his wallet, he stiffed the taxi driver when the cab stopped for a red light.
    • 1946, William Foote Whyte, Industry and Society, page 129
      We asked one girl to explain how she felt when she was “stiffed.” She said, You think of all the work you’ve done and how you’ve tried to please [them…].
  2. to cheat someone
    • 1992, Stephen Birmingham, Shades of Fortune, page 451
      You see, poor Nonie really was stiffed by Adolph in his will. He really stiffed her, Rose, and I really wanted to right that wrong.
  3. to tip ungenerously
    • 2007, Mary Higgins Clark, I Heard That Song Before, page 154
      Then he stiffed the waiter with a cheap tip.

Translations

Anagrams

  • TIFFs, tiffs

Middle English

Adjective

stiff

  1. Alternative form of stif

Adverb

stiff

  1. Alternative form of stif

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