(noun, verb)


1. (linguistics) the form of a word after all affixes are removed

- thematic vowels are part of the stem

Similar word(s): base, radical, root, theme

Definition categories: communication, descriptor, form, signifier

2. a slender or elongated structure that supports a plant or fungus or a plant part or plant organ

Similar word(s): stalk

Definition categories: plant

3. cylinder forming a long narrow part of something

Similar word(s): shank

Definition categories: man–made, cylinder

4. the tube of a tobacco pipe

Definition categories: man–made, tube, tubing

5. front part of a vessel or aircraft

Similar word(s): bow, fore, prow

Definition categories: man–made, front

6. a turn made in skiing; the back of one ski is forced outward and the other ski is brought parallel to it

Definition categories: act, turn, turning

Sentences with stem as a noun:

- the stem of an apple or a cherry


1. grow out of, have roots in, originate in

- The increase in the national debt stems from the last war

Definition categories: stative

2. cause to point inward

- stem your skis

Definition categories: stative, orient

3. stop the flow of a liquid

- stem the tide

Similar word(s): halt, stanch, staunch

Definition categories: change, check

4. remove the stem from

- for automatic natural language processing, the words must be stemmed

Definition categories: change, remove, take, withdraw

Sentences with stem as a verb:

- to stem cherries; to stem tobacco leaves

- The current crisis stems from the short-sighted politics of the previous government.

- to stem a tide