Stone in love with you?

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Hollis987 | 10:50 Thu 12th Jun 2008 | Music
11 Answers
What is the meaning of the word 'stone' in the Stylistics' song 'I'm Stone In Love With You'? It's listed in the playlist for Radio Two's 'Wake up to Wogan' on June 11, so I know I've heard it right. It's bothered me for years!


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I always assumed it was intended to mean 'extremely' as in 'stone cold'. But the fact that that actually comes from 'cold as a stone' means it doesn't really work...
In this sense it is an adjective and means "totally, absolutely'.

A good example is stone deaf - in common useage in the UK and we understand to mean absolutely, totally deaf.

Stone dead - no question, he is totally dead.

Stony broke - absolutely has no money.
Except: these are just further examples of my one above: there is no dictionary definition that defines stone adverbally (NOT an adjective incidentally) as 'absolutely'. These phrases were originally deaf as a stone, dead as a stone etc. =78390&dict=CALD =78389&dict=CALD

23. completely; totally (usually used in combination): stone cold

And in my own dictionary, Collins English Dictionary (2nd Edition) at sense 20, 'Completely'.
BUT it can only be used with adjectives that describe a quality of a stone! That's the whole point stone-dead means dead as a stone. You cannot use it to mean 'absolutely' in any other context. Chambers certainly doesn't support that. Hence, the song jars - or sticks in the memory, whichever way you want to look at it.
Have you never heard of the evolution of language through common usage? Such phrases may very well have originated to describe the qualities of a stone, but over time and through use the word 'stone' has, in such instances, come to be used as an adverb to mean completely.
Could you patronise just a little more? Being a linguistics major, I probably know a lot more about language evolution than you'll ever know! Give an example where stone is an adverb meaning 'completely' which does NOT refer to the qualities of a stone - and maybe you'll begin to back up your 'argument'.
"Being a linguistics major, I probably know a lot more about language evolution than you'll ever know!"

Goodness me. What was that about being patronising? You certainly know a lot more about that than I'll ever know.

I don't have to give examples of anything to back up my 'argument', thank you very much, as I have agreed with your assertion as to the actual meaning of the word. My response was concerning what is now generally considered acceptable usage of the term, rather than whether or not it's technically correct. Sorry if this wasn't clear enough for a linguistics major to understand.

Anyway, I'll leave it there. I'm not going to get into a protracted argument about a Stylistics lyric.
hey guys, you all need to get out a bit more......
Well you guys, as I am not satisfied with any of the answers given here, I have gone to the Stylistics website and contacted an administrator and left the question on their guestbook.
If this term actually means anything, surely the writer or one of the band is the best person / people to ask!
As littleoldme points out, the evolution of language through common usage could mean the term "I'm Stone In Love With You", means something totally different to what we all think.
An example of what I am saying here could be this, quite a few bands did a number called "Back Door Man", In southern culture, the phrase "back-door man" refers to a man having an affair with a married woman, using the back door as an exit before the husband comes home.
From Wikipedia: The phrase "back-door man" dates from the 1920s, but the term became a double entendre in the 1960s, also meaning "one who practices anal intercourse."
If / when I get a reply, I will post it here.
Well I have had two replies from the Stylistics website, this one from the site moderator,

"Hi Steve,

Thanks for visiting the Stylistics web site. Well here in America when someone is stone that usually means that they are/were drunk or intoxicated ! So to put it is simpler terms "I'M STONE IN LOVE WITH YOU" would mean "I'M intoxicating IN LOVE WITH YOU". I hope that this helps. Now what do you think that "BETCHA BY GOLLY WOW"

Airrion" well this seems a little tongue in cheek,

and this from a member of the website,

"Stone is an idiomatic black English expression which can loosely be defined as “very” or “much” as in Jimi Hendrix song “Stone Free” or the wrestler “Stone Cold Steve Austin”.Therefore, stone in love means very or much in love with you.
Jack Stryker"

So if I combine the two answers, basically it means being in love with someone so much, that it is like being intoxicated, or very high on love!

I hope that this clears it up, or is a satisfactory answer for most people.


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