From Longman Dictionary of Contemporary Englishhalthalt1 /hɔːlt $ hɒːlt/ ●○○ noun 1 STOP MOVINGSTOP something THAT IS HAPPENING[singular] a stop or pause Heavy snowfalls brought traffic to a halt (=made it stop moving). The World Championship was brought to a temporary halt (=was stopped from continuing).come/grind/screech etc to a halt (=stop moving or continuing) The whole peace process seems to have ground to a halt. The car skidded to a halt. The president has called for a halt to the wave of emigration.2 → call a halt (to something)3 [countable] British English a place in the countryside where a train stops to let passengers get off, but where there is no stationCOLLOCATIONSverbsbring something to a halt (=make something or someone stop moving)Paris was brought to a halt by striking transport workers.something/somebody comes to a halt (=something or someone stops moving)In front of them, the truck gradually slowed down and came to a halt.something grinds to a halt (=something stops very slowly – used for emphasis)Just ahead, he could see traffic grinding to a halt.something screeches/shudders/skids/jolts to a halt (=a vehicle stops very quickly and noisily – used for emphasis)The car skidded to a halt and three men jumped out.something draws to a halt (=a vehicle slows down and stops)As the train drew to a halt, people started to get off.call for a halt to something (=publicly ask for something to stop)The government has called for a halt to the violence.order a halt to something (=officially say that something must stop)Judge Marquez ordered a halt to logging on Indian lands.demand a halt to something (=firmly ask for something to stop)Irish farmers demanded a halt to imports of British cattle.put a halt to something (=stop something suddenly)The news put a halt to our celebrations.adjectivesan abrupt halt (=one that is sudden and unexpected)His career came to an abrupt halt when he was seriously injured in a road accident.a sudden haltMy happiness was brought to a sudden halt by the death of my father.a premature halt (=one that is sooner than expected)Bad weather brought the game to a premature halt. a temporary haltThe game was brought to a temporary halt when the floodlights failed.an immediate haltThe government called for an immediate halt to the fighting.a complete haltWendy had slowed down, almost to a complete halt.a grinding halt (=one that happens slowly – used for emphasis)One accident can bring the whole road system to a grinding halt.a shuddering halt (=one in which a vehicle shakes noisily as it stops moving)He slammed his foot on the brake pedal, bringing the truck to a shuddering halt.
Examples from the Corpushalt• Businessmen, who had generally welcomed the initial actions of the administration, now called for a halt.• The train has again come to a halt.• Ana just drifted to a halt, turning without demur as Maggie moved her to face the house.• Compare the problems in Glen Nevis where in summer traffic all but grinds to a halt, to see the possible outcome.• It burst out of the tunnel in a gale of hot air and shuddered to a halt.• He staggered to a halt, peering at the houses.• He was run over by at least twelve wagons before the train was brought to an halt.• It went on too long, until its recent shuddering halt.called for a halt to• The propertied classes rallied to the government and called for a halt to all disturbances.halthalt2 ●○○ verb 1 [transitive]STOP something THAT IS HAPPENING to prevent someone or something from continuing – used especially in news reports SYN stop The government has failed to halt economic decline. Safety concerns have led them to halt work on the dam.RegisterHalt is mainly used in journalism. In everyday English, people usually say stop:They had to stop the building work.2 [intransitive]STOP MOVING to stop moving The parade halted by a busy corner.3 → halt!→ See Verb table
Examples from the Corpushalt• There was a statement to be made, a line to be drawn, a trend to be halted.• By 1993 the percentage had dropped to 12. 1 percent, and the trend shows no signs of halting.• The taxi halted at the hotel's front door.• The Trade Union March had been halted by police long before they reached the Square.• Heavy rain halted five railroad lines in the Tokyo area.• On Sept. 17 reports stated that tear gas was used to halt protests at a Mandalay high school.• At length Fand halted, spear held aloft.• All his efforts had failed to halt the increase in street crime.• By an 8-7 vote, a Senate committee halted the taggant test program.• The government is determined to halt the trade in illegal animal furs.• We halted under a memorial statue to Frederick the Great.• Accumulation through dynamic expansion would be halted when the need for more workers drove up wages and eroded profits.halt!halt!STOP something THAT IS HAPPENINGused as a military order to tell someone to stop moving or soldiers to stop marching Company halt! Halt! Who goes there? → halt
Examples from the Corpushalt!• Halt! Who goes there?• Company halt!Origin halt1 (1500-1600) German