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A plural of staff1.
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n., pl. staffs for 1-4,8; staves (stāvz) or staffs for 5-7,9,10; n.
1. a group of people, esp. employees, who carry out the work of an establishment or perform a specific function.
2. a group of assistants to a manager, superintendent, or executive.
a. a body of military officers appointed to assist a commanding officer.
b. the parts of an army concerned with administration rather than combat.
4. a stick, pole, or rod for aid in walking or climbing, for use as a weapon, etc.
5. a rod serving as a symbol of office or authority.
6. a pole on which a flag is hung or displayed.
7. something that supports or sustains.
8. Also, stave. a set of usu. five horizontal lines, with the corresponding four spaces between them, on which music is written.
9. Archaic. the shaft of a spear, lance, etc.adj.
10. of or pertaining to a military or organizational staff.
11. employed on the staff of a corporation, publication, institution, etc.: a staff writer.v.t.
12. to provide with a staff of assistants or workers.
13. to serve on the staff of.
14. to send to a staff for study or further work (often fol. by out).
[before 900; Old English stæf, c. Old Frisian stef, Old Saxon staf, Old High German stap, Old Norse stafr staff]
usage: See collective noun.
a composition of plaster and fibrous material used for a temporary finish and in ornamental work, as on exposition buildings.
[1890–95, Amer.; perhaps < German Stoff stuff]
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