n. pl. stapes or sta·pe·des (stāpĭ-dēz′)
The innermost of the three small bones of the middle ear, shaped somewhat like a stirrup. Also called stirrup.
[New Latin stapēs, stapēd-, from Medieval Latin, stirrup, perhaps alteration (influenced by Latin stāre, to stand, and pēs, ped-, foot) of staffa, stapha, of Germanic origin; akin to Old English stæpe, stepe, step.]
sta·pedi·al (stā-pēdē-əl) adj.
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2020 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.