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Stake, subst. 1) a strong stick or a post fixed in the ground: Tp. III, 2, 98. H6A I, 1, 117. Especially a) the post to which one condemned to die by fire is fastened: “I will die in it at the s.” Ado I, 1, 235. “when thou comest to the s.” H6A V, 3, 44. Hence == pyre: “place barrels of pitch upon the fatal s.” H6A V, 4, 57. And == judgment, execution in general: “bringing the murderous coward to the s.” Lr. II, 1, 64. b) the post to which a bear is tied to be baited: “have you not set mine honour at the s. and baited it,” Tw. III, 1, 129. “call hither to the s. my two brave bears,” H6B V, 1, 144. Caes. IV, 1, 48. Mcb. V, 7, 1. Lr. III, 7, 54. Used in a lascivious sense by way of punning: Merch. III, 2, 220.
2) that which is pledged or wagered: “the rich s. drawn,” Wint. I, 2, 248.
3) the state of being laid and pledged as a wager; always preceded by at: “at s.” Troil. III, 3, 227. Cor. III, 2, 63. Oth. IV, 2, 13. “at the s.” All's II, 3, 156. Hml. IV, 4, 56.
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