stop short

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stop short

To abruptly stop doing something. The sudden blaring of the alarm caused me to stop short on my way down the hall.
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

stop ˈshort


1 (also stop somebody short) suddenly stop doing something or make somebody stop somebody doing something: When I read how many people had died, I stopped short and stared in disbelief at the newspaper.
2 (stop short of something/of doing something)nearly but not actually do something, for example because you are afraid or you think it is a bad idea: The manager told her that he was unhappy with her work, but he stopped short of dismissing her from her job.
See also: short, stop
References in classic literature ?
No," said Natalia, stopping short before me, "perhaps not.
According to analysts, China, while stopping short of a complete suspension of military ties, could cancel or postpone individual engagements, such as joint antipiracy exercises in the Gulf of Aden, which were scheduled to be held before the end of the year.
Forsythe uses the full depth of the theater's cavernous, rectangular space, light fading in and out as small groups of dancers enter, sometimes running wildly, then stopping short, or playing intricate physical games in tangled duos or trios.
ally, American presidents have traditionally taken a middle road describing the casualties as ``massacres'' but stopping short of using the term ``genocide'' and opposing resolutions acknowledging a genocide.
Stopping short of the rack and thumbscrews, the article goes on to recommend "court-sanctioned psychological interrogation" and "transferring some suspects to our less squeamish allies.
While stopping short of recommending that the government regulate alcohol advertising, the report rattled the government's saber and has been taken by companies as a warning that they had better get onto this federal wagon.