Meaning of MASS in English

I. ˈmas noun

Etymology: Middle English, from Old English mæsse, modification of Vulgar Latin * messa, literally, dismissal at the end of a religious service, from Late Latin missa, from Latin, feminine of missus, past participle of mittere to send

Date: before 12th century

1. capitalized : the liturgy of the Eucharist especially in accordance with the traditional Latin rite

2. often capitalized : a celebration of the Eucharist

Sunday mass es held at three different hours

3. : a musical setting for the ordinary of the Mass

II. noun

Etymology: Middle English masse, from Anglo-French, from Latin massa, from Greek maza; akin to Greek massein to knead — more at mingle

Date: 15th century


a. : a quantity or aggregate of matter usually of considerable size


(1) : expanse , bulk

(2) : massive quality or effect

impressed me with such mass and such vividness — F. M. Ford

(3) : the principal part or main body

the great mass of the continent is buried under an ice cap — Walter Sullivan

(4) : aggregate , whole

men in the mass

c. : the property of a body that is a measure of its inertia and that is commonly taken as a measure of the amount of material it contains and causes it to have weight in a gravitational field

2. : a large quantity, amount, or number

a great mass of material


a. : a large body of persons in a compact group : a body of persons regarded as an aggregate

b. : the great body of the people as contrasted with the elite — often used in plural

the underprivileged and disadvantaged mass es — C. A. Buss

Synonyms: see bulk

III. verb

Date: 14th century

transitive verb

: to form or collect into a mass

intransitive verb

: to assemble in a mass

three thousand students had mass ed in the plaza — A. E. Neville

IV. adjective

Date: 1733


a. : of or relating to the mass of the people

mass market

mass education

also : being one of or at one with the mass : average , commonplace

mass man

b. : participated in by or affecting a large number of individuals

mass destruction

mass demonstrations

c. : having a large-scale character

mass plantings of tulips

2. : viewed as a whole : total

the mass effect of a design

Merriam-Webster's Collegiate English vocabulary.      Энциклопедический словарь английского языка Merriam Webster.