Middle English Dictionary Entry

stīen v.(1)
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Entry Info

Definitions (Senses and Subsenses)

Note: Cp. astien v., istien v. (Suppl.).
To move in a vertical plane, move up or down; -- with adverbs: (a) ~ doun (dounward, nether), to go down, descend; also fig.; of Christ: come down (to earth at the Incarnation), descend (to hell following the Crucifixion); ~ on doun, fig. be humble; (b) ~ up (upright, upward), to ascend; rise; of smoke, vapor, an odor, etc.: waft upward; of a spring, water: well up; of fire: blaze up; of a plant: spring up, sprout up, grow; of a bird: fly up; (c) ~ up (ful heighe), of Christ: to ascend bodily (to heaven following the Resurrection); -- also impers.; ben stied up; (d) ~ up, of God, Christ, Mary, an angel, etc.: to ascend (into the air, to the heavens, etc. after an appearance to sb. on earth), rise; (e) ~ up (upward), of a living person: to ascend (into heaven); also fig.; of a person or the soul after death: be translated (to heaven), ascend; be saved.
To descend, come down; also fig.; also, fall.
(a) To ascend, rise; also fig.; of smoke, a stench: waft upward; of a spring, water: well up; of a flame: blaze up; of a blossom: spring up; of a bird: fly up; (b) of Christ: to ascend bodily (to heaven following the Resurrection); also, of the Antichrist: rise up (into the air as if to ascend to heaven); ben stied; (c) of Christ, an angel, a heavenly being: to ascend (into heaven, to the stars, etc. after an appearance to sb. on earth); ben stied; (d) of a living person: to ascend (into heaven); also fig.; of a person, the body, or the soul after death: be translated (to heaven), ascend.
(a) To climb; -- with adverbs and adverbial phrases: ~ doun, climb down; ~ heighe (on heigh), climb high; ~ over, climb higher; ~ up, climb up; also fig.; ben stied up; (b) to ascend by climbing, climb up; ben stied; ~ in (on), climb up on (sth.); ~ in-to, climb up into (a tree, topcastle, etc.), climb up onto (a wall, tower); ~ up, climb up (a hill, wall), scale (a walled city); ~ upo, climb up on (a riverbank); ~ upon, climb up on (a tree, ladder, mountain, etc.); also fig.; (c) to mount; with prep. phrases: ~ in-to, mount or climb up into (a bed, chariot); ~ on (up, upon), mount or climb up upon (a couch, an animal's back); ~ o (on) rode, ~ upo cros, of Christ: mount on the cross; also, with adv.: ~ up, mount or climb up (onto a bed, into a seat, on an animal's back, etc.); stiinge (up, mounted; (d) to ascend a throne; also, with adv.: ~ up; (e) to climb (a hill, ladder); -- used fig.; (f) ~ on (up upon), of a male animal: to mount (a female), copulate with.
(a) Fig. Of a people: to rise up in anger; ~ ayen, of the body: rise against (the soul), rebel against, assail; (b) ~ up, to rise to one's feet, get up, stand up; (c) ~ up, to raise (Christ) up (on the cross), lift up.
(a) To extend; ~ up, of rock, a ladder: extend upward; (b) ~ (up, of dawn: to break.
(a) To advance (to a place or position), move, pass; also fig. [quot. ?c1430]; ~ on (up upon), fig. tread on (someone's neck), defeat (sb.); ~ oute, move out (over a wall), venture out; ~ over, pass over (into a place), traverse (a specified distance) [transl. of L transcendere]; ~ up, come forth, go forth; ppl. stiinge as adj., of a snake: ?creeping; ?error for stinginge, ppl. of stingen v. 2.(a); (b) to make a journey, travel; ~ doun, travel down (to a place, esp. a place of lower elevation); ~ up, make a journey; travel up (to sb., esp. a person worthy of honor); journey (to a place, freq. of higher elevation, great holiness, etc.); (c) ~ upon (up on), of a razor: to go over (someone's head); (d) to make entry, enter; ~ in-to, enter into (a city, the Temple); ~ on, embark on (a ship); ~ up, get on board (boats); enter (the Temple); also, with adv.: ~ up, enter; enter (into a boat).
(a) To strive toward a higher or more perfect spiritual, moral, or intellectual state; attain to such a state; with inf.: strive (to understand sth.); ~ in-to, strive toward (sth.); also, with adverbs: ~ up (upward), strive upward, strive (toward God or sth.); attain (to sth.); ~ heighe, be knowledgeable (about sth.); ~ upward in-to, strive upward toward (Christ); (b) to rise in social standing, worldly prosperity, etc.; rise (to an office, a position, etc.); also, aspire (to worldly honors) [last quot.]; ~ up; (c) to increase, reach a more intense level; ~ in, increase in (pride); ~ in-to, be stirred into (wrath); ~ on (up), of wrath: arise against (sb., a nation); ~ on heigh, become arrogant; also, with adverbs: ~ so heighe, become so presumptuous; ~ up, increase (in sin); also, of folly, pride: arise, increase; ben stied up, of wrath: be kindled; (d) of a thought, mental image, etc.: to enter (into the mind); of a prayer, good deed: come (into the purview of God); ~ up; (e) ~ up, to rise (above one's carnal nature or desire).

Supplemental Materials (draft)

  • c1450(1438)GLeg.Assump.Virgin (GiL112) (Eg 876) 581/586 : I haue shewed the a walle to alle the worlde, an arche of sauacion..a ladder for stiers to heuene.
  • Note: Glossary: "stiers n. pl. 'those who ascend'."
    Note: The agent noun MED stier(e (of the verb stien) records only the agent noun of sense 2.(f), 'a rider of a horse. Here, stiers seems to be the agent noun for sense 1a.(b), 'to ascend'.
    Note: New sense, poss. gloss: 'One who ascends (to heaven).'