mes ‧ sage S1 W2 /ˈmesɪdʒ/ BrE AmE noun [countable]
[ Date: 1200-1300 ; Language: Old French ; Origin: Medieval Latin missaticum , from Latin mittere 'to send' ]
1 . a spoken or written piece of information that you send to another person or leave for them
There’s a message from Karen on the answerphone.
I have an urgent message for you.
He left a message saying he would probably be a little late.
2 . [usually singular] the main or most important idea that someone is trying to tell people about in a film, book, speech etc:
The message of the film is that good always triumphs over evil.
The result of this legal battle sends an important message to people in similar situations.
It’s perfectly possible to get your message across (=communicate what you want to say) without being so angry.
They use illustrations to convey their message.
3 . get the message informal to understand what someone means or what they want you to do:
OK, I get the message – I’m going!
4 . a piece of written information which appears on a computer screen to tell the user about something, especially a problem
I keep getting an error message when I try to log on.
5 . on/off message stating or not stating the official opinion of the political party you belong to
6 . keep/stick to the message to always emphasize your political party’s most important ideas when you are trying to gain people’s support:
Don’t confuse the voters. Keep to the message.
• • •
▪ get a message ( also receive a message formal )
Didn’t you get my message?
▪ send a message
My mum just sent me a text message.
▪ leave a message (=write or say something that the person will receive later)
Please leave a message after the beep.
▪ take a message (=write down a message from someone for someone else)
Ellen isn’t here. Can I take a message?
▪ give somebody a message (=from someone else)
Just give him the message.
▪ pass on/relay/deliver a message (=give someone a message from someone else)
I asked Rob if he would pass on a message for me.
■ ADJECTIVES/NOUN + message
▪ an urgent/important message
an urgent message for the commanding officer
▪ a brief/short message
She left a short message on his answering machine.
▪ a personal message
It was a personal message from Thomas.
▪ a telephone/phone message (=a message that someone has written down for you from a phone call)
There was a telephone message for her to call Harbury.
▪ a text message (=a written message that you receive on your mobile phone)
Her phone kept beeping whenever she got a text message.
▪ an email/mail message (=a message that you receive by email)
Just send me an email message to let me know what time.
▪ a secret message
a secret message written in lemon juice
▪ a message of support/sympathy/congratulations etc
Other celebrities sent messages of support.
• • •
▪ email a message sent using the email system:
Did you get my email?
There were about 20 emails in my inbox that morning.
▪ message an email – used when it is obvious that you are talking about a message sent by email, rather than a message sent by some other method:
I deleted your message by mistake.
▪ attachment a document or file that is sent with an email:
You can email the photo to me as an attachment.
▪ spam unwanted email messages from advertisers:
I was getting so much spam that I changed my email address.
▪ phishing the activity of sending emails in order to trick someone into giving away information such as their bank account number or their computer password. This information is then used to get money or goods:
Yahoo announced new measures to protect users from phishing.