stop short

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stop short

To cause one to abruptly stop doing something. The sudden blaring of the alarm caused me to stop short on my way down the hall. News of the reduction in funding stopped our researchers short.
See also: short, stop

stop short

1. Also, stop one short. Check abruptly, as in When we tried to cross the street, the barrier stopped us short. [Early 1300s]
2. Cause someone to stop speaking, as in I was about to tell them the date when my father stopped me short. [Late 1800s]
3. stop short of. Not go so far as to do or say something. For example, He may embroider the truth but he stops short of actually lying. This usage was first recorded in 1818.
See also: short, stop
References in periodicals archive ?
But he will stop one short of an overall Commons majority, according to an amazing new computer programme.