Complete Definition of "sticking point"

English

Alternative spellings
sticking-point

Noun
en-noun|sg=sticking point
#context|idiom A disputed issue or state of affairs that causes an interruption or outright impasse in progress towards some goal or resolution, especially in negotiation or argumentation.
#*1934, "41,000 Years' Work," Time, 30 July,
#*:The question of representing inside workers was a sticking point.
#*2002, H. Robert Hall, "Casey and the Negotiation of the Antarctic Treaty" in Jabour-Green, J. & Haward, M. (eds) The Antarctic: Past, Present and Future: Antarctic CRC Research Report #28, Hobart, pp.27-33.
#*:A major sticking point had arisen over draft article IV of the proposed treaty dealing with the disputed Antarctic claims and rights.
#context|idiom|dated The point at which a process or thing, especially a state of mind or emotion, reaches its greatest strength and remains steadfast; sticking-place.
#*1842, w:James_Fennimore_Cooper|James Fennimore Cooper, The Wing and Wing, ch. 4,
#*:It warmed his feelings to the sticking point.
#*1913, w:Lucy_Maud_Montgomery|Lucy Maud Montgomery, The Golden Road, ch. 3,
#*:I could not screw my courage to the sticking point.

References
"sticking point" in the Dictionary.com Unabridged, v1.0.1, Lexico Publishing Group, 2006.
"sticking point" in Encarta® World English Dictionary [North American Edition] © & (P)2007 Microsoft Corporation.
"sticking point" in the Wordsmyth Dictionary-Thesaurus © Wordsmyth 2002.
Oxford English Dictionary, 2nd ed., 1989. See "sticking-point."

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