A symbol is a concrete image that represents something, often something abstract. It stands in place of something. That is, it stands for something. A woman blindfolded with scales in one hand and a sword in the other stands for justice. A white dove with a green branch in its beak stands for peace.
Stand for can also mean when a group of people take a stand for certain ideals. We like to think that the United States stands for the hope of freedom of people around the world.
We stand up for ideals and people in need of defending, which means that we must be in a state of alert. When the danger is over we stand down from the alert. If a judge in a legal case is found to have a personal interest in the case he must stand down and let another judge take the case.
When two people or groups are fighting and neither can gain an advantage, they have a stand off (or stalemate). A person who is rather cold and doesn’t allow people to get very familiar with him is rather standoffish. Stand aside is another way of saying „Get out of the way.“ and can also mean that one does want to get involved. „I can’t just stand aside when I see injustice being done.“
A person who is very warm and funny and is good at making people laugh might have a future as a comedian. Such a person might get his start telling jokes con a stage in a nightclub doing stand up comedy. A stand up comic must work very hard to make a living. What happens if he gets sick? What will the theater or night club do if he can’t perform? They must get a stand in to perform in his place. In the theater the stand in for an actor in a play is called an understudy, because they must study the role just in case the actor gets sick.
Do you often get into arguments? If you do you must be careful to have all of your facts right. If you have no evidence to support your argument you haven’t got a leg to stand on.
WORD PICTURES by Stephen Browne published by
inlingua GALINDO Language School