stain Meaning in the Cambridge English Dictionary

Meaning of “stain” in the English Dictionary

"stain" in British English

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uk   us   /steɪn/

stain verb (MARK)

C2 [I or T] to ​leave a ​mark on something that is ​difficult to ​remove: Tomato ​sauce stains ​terribly - it's really ​difficult to get it out of ​clothes. While she was ​changing the ​wheel on her ​car, her ​coat had ​become stained withoil. [I] If a ​material stains, it ​absorbssubstanceseasily, ​causing it to ​becomecovered with ​marks, or ​coloured by a ​chemical: This ​carpet is ​ideal for the ​kitchen because it doesn't stain ​easily. [T] to ​change the ​colour of something using a ​chemical: She ​stripped the ​floorboards and stained them ​darkbrown.
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stain verb (SPOIL)

C2 [T] literary to ​permanentlyspoil something such as someone's ​reputation: Several ​importantpoliticians have had ​theirreputations stained by this ​scandal. The country's ​history is stained with the ​blood of (= the ​country is ​guilty of ​killing) millions of ​innocent men and women.


uk   us   /steɪn/

stain noun (MARK)

B1 [C] a ​dirtymark on something that is ​difficult to ​remove: a ​blood/​grass stain You can ​remove a ​redwine stain from a ​carpet by ​sprinklingsalt over it. [C] a ​chemical for ​changing the ​colour of something

stain noun (DAMAGE)

[S] literary permanentdamage to someone's ​reputation or ​character: His ​solicitor said, "He ​leaves this ​court without a stain on his ​character."
(Definition of stain from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

"stain" in American English

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stainverb [I/T]

 us   /steɪn/
to ​leave a ​mark on something that is ​difficult to ​remove, or to ​becomecolored or ​spoiled by a ​mark: [T] Strawberry ​juice stained my ​shirt. [I] This ​carpet is ​practical because it doesn’t stain ​easily. If you stain ​wood, you put a ​substance on it that ​changesitscolor: [T] Instead of ​painting the ​woodwork, she stained it ​darkbrown.
adjective  us   /ˈsteɪn·ləs/

stainnoun [C]

 us   /steɪn/
a ​dirtymark on something that is ​difficult to ​remove: The ​tomatosauceleft a stain on the ​tablecloth. A stain is also a ​thin, ​oilyliquid used to ​change the ​color of ​wood. biology A stain is also a ​chemical used to ​colorcells to make them ​easier to ​see when ​studying them under a microscope .
(Definition of stain from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)
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