The word "sting" is used when a person is harmed by an insect such as a bee, a mosquito, or a wasp. It’s also used when a person experiences pain.

simplepastpast participle
  • I got stung by a bee.
  • A wasp will sting you if it’s disturbed.
  • Have you ever been stung?
  • Ow, that stings! (That hurts!)
  • Pouring alcohol on an open cut stings.
  • The nurse warned the patient that the injection would sting a little.


A bee stings people with a stinger.

In these sentences, the word "sting" is a noun:

  • He’s being treated for a bee sting.
  • A person who is allergic to a bee sting has to be very careful around bees.

Sometimes a sting is a prearranged trap for criminals. Law enforcement agencies plan to entrap someone who is known to commit crimes or likely to do something that is illegal.

  • The thieves were captured in a sting operation.
  • The FBI arranged the sting.
  • The movie American Hustle is about a sting that took place in the 1970s.

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May 16, 2014