Stark (?), a. [Compar. Starker (?); superl. Starkest.] [OE. stark stiff, strong, AS. stearc; akin to OS. starc strong, D. sterk, OHG. starc, starah, G. & Sw. stark, Dan. staerk, Icel. sterkr, Goth. gasta�xa3;rknan to become dried up, Lith. stregti to stiffen, to freeze. Cf. Starch, a. & n.]


Stiff; rigid.


Whose senses all were straight benumbed and stark. Spenser.

His heart gan wax as stark as marble stone. Spenser.

Many a nobleman lies stark and stiff Under the hoofs of vaunting enemies. Shak.

The north is not so stark and cold. B. Jonson.


Complete; absolute; full; perfect; entire.


Consider the stark security The common wealth is in now. B. Jonson.


Strong; vigorous; powerful.

A stark, moss-trooping Scot. Sir W. Scott.

Stark beer, boy, stout and strong beer. Beau. & Fl.


Severe; violent; fierce.

[Obs.] "In starke stours." [i. e., in fierce combats].



Mere; sheer; gross; entire; downright.

He pronounces the citation stark nonsense. Collier.

Rhetoric is very good or stark naught; there's no medium in rhetoric. Selden.


© Webster 1913.

Stark (?), adv.

Wholly; entirely; absolutely; quite; as, stark mind.


Held him strangled in his arms till he was stark dead. Fuller.

Stark naked, wholly naked; quite bare.

Strip your sword stark naked. Shak.

⇒ According to Professor Skeat, "stark-naked" is derived from steort-naked, or start-naked, literally tail-naked, and hence wholly naked. If this etymology be true the preferable form is stark-naked.


© Webster 1913.

Stark, v. t.

To stiffen.


If horror have not starked your limbs. H. Taylor.


© Webster 1913.