verb (used with object)

  1. to stock to excess: We are overstocked on this item.


  1. a stock that is larger than the actual need or demand.


  1. a close-fitting covering for the foot and part of the leg, usually knitted, of wool, cotton, nylon, silk, or similar material.
  2. something resembling such a covering.


  1. in one’s stocking feet, wearing stockings, but without shoes: Be careful of glass splinters if you walk through here in your stocking feet.

verb (tr)

  1. to hold or supply (a commodity) in excess of requirements
  2. to run more farm animals on (a piece of land) than it is capable of maintaining


  1. one of a pair of close-fitting garments made of knitted yarn to cover the foot and part or all of the leg
  2. something resembling this in position, function, appearance, etc
  3. in one’s stocking feet or in one’s stockinged feet wearing stockings or socks but no shoes

v.1640s, from over- + stock (v.). Related: Overstocked; overstocking. The noun is attested from 1710. n.“close-fitting garment covering the foot and leg,” 1580s, from stocka “leg covering, stock,” from Old English stocu “sleeve,” related to Old English stocc “trunk, log” (see stock (n.1)). Probably so called because of a fancied resemblance of legs to tree trunks, or a reference to the punishing stocks. Cognates include Old Norse stuka, Old High German stuhha, from the same Proto-Germanic source. Restriction to women’s hose is 20c. As a receptacle for Christmas presents, attested from 1853; hence stocking stuffer first recorded 1976.

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