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1 definition found
 for From stem to stern
From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48 :

  Stem \Stem\ (st[e^]m), n. [AS. stemn, stefn, staefn; akin to OS.
     stamn the stem of a ship, D. stam stem, steven stem of a
     ship, G. stamm stem, steven stem of a ship, Icel. stafn,
     stamn, stem of a ship, stofn, stomn, stem, Sw. stam a tree
     trunk, Dan. stamme. Cf. Staff, Stand.]
     1. The principal body of a tree, shrub, or plant, of any
        kind; the main stock; the part which supports the branches
        or the head or top.
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              After they are shot up thirty feet in length, they
              spread a very large top, having no bough nor twig in
              the trunk or the stem.                --Sir W.
                                                    Raleigh.
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              The lowering spring, with lavish rain,
              Beats down the slender stem and breaded grain.
                                                    --Dryden.
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     2. A little branch which connects a fruit, flower, or leaf
        with a main branch; a peduncle, pedicel, or petiole; as,
        the stem of an apple or a cherry.
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     3. The stock of a family; a race or generation of
        progenitors. "All that are of noble stem." --Milton.
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              While I do pray, learn here thy stem
              And true descent.                     --Herbert.
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     4. A branch of a family.
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              This is a stem
              Of that victorious stock.             --Shak.
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     5. (Naut.) A curved piece of timber to which the two sides of
        a ship are united at the fore end. The lower end of it is
        scarfed to the keel, and the bowsprit rests upon its upper
        end. Hence, the forward part of a vessel; the bow.
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     6. Fig.: An advanced or leading position; the lookout.
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              Wolsey sat at the stem more than twenty years.
                                                    --Fuller.
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     7. Anything resembling a stem or stalk; as, the stem of a
        tobacco pipe; the stem of a watch case, or that part to
        which the ring, by which it is suspended, is attached.
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     8. (Bot.) That part of a plant which bears leaves, or
        rudiments of leaves, whether rising above ground or wholly
        subterranean.
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     9. (Zool.)
        (a) The entire central axis of a feather.
        (b) The basal portion of the body of one of the
            Pennatulacea, or of a gorgonian.
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     10. (Mus.) The short perpendicular line added to the body of
         a note; the tail of a crotchet, quaver, semiquaver, etc.
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     11. (Gram.) The part of an inflected word which remains
         unchanged (except by euphonic variations) throughout a
         given inflection; theme; base.
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     From stem to stern (Naut.), from one end of the ship to the
        other, or through the whole length.
  
     Stem leaf (Bot.), a leaf growing from the stem of a plant,
        as contrasted with a basal or radical leaf.
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