Origin of mass

1350–1400; Middle English masse < Latin massa mass < Greek mâza barley cake, akin to mássein to knead
Related formsmass·ed·ly [mas-id-lee, mast-lee] /ˈmæs ɪd li, ˈmæst li/, adverbun·massed, adjective
Can be confusedmassed mast

Synonym study

5. See size1.

Definition for mass (2 of 3)

Mass

[ mas ]
/ mæs /

noun

the celebration of the Eucharist.Compare High Mass, Low Mass.
(sometimes lowercase) a musical setting of certain parts of this service, as the Kyrie eleison, Gloria, Credo, Sanctus, Benedictus, and Agnus Dei.

Origin of Mass

before 900; Middle English masse, Old English mæsse < Vulgar Latin *messa, Late Latin missa, formally feminine of Latin missus, past participle of mittere to send, dismiss; perhaps extracted from a phrase in the service with missa est and a feminine subject

Definition for mass (3 of 3)

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for mass

British Dictionary definitions for mass (1 of 3)

mass

/ (mæs) /

noun

adjective

done or occurring on a large scalemass hysteria; mass radiography
consisting of a mass or large number, esp of peoplea mass meeting

verb

to form (people or things) or (of people or things) to join together into a massthe crowd massed outside the embassy
See also masses, mass in
Derived Formsmassed, adjectivemassedly (ˈmæsɪdlɪ, ˈmæstlɪ), adverb

Word Origin for mass

C14: from Old French masse, from Latin massa that which forms a lump, from Greek maza barley cake; perhaps related to Greek massein to knead

British Dictionary definitions for mass (2 of 3)

Mass

/ (mæs, mɑːs) /

noun

(in the Roman Catholic Church and certain Protestant Churches) the celebration of the EucharistSee also High Mass, Low Mass
a musical setting of those parts of the Eucharistic service sung by choir or congregation

Word Origin for Mass

Old English mæsse, from Church Latin missa, ultimately from Latin mittere to send away; perhaps derived from the concluding dismissal in the Roman Mass, Ite, missa est, Go, it is the dismissal

British Dictionary definitions for mass (3 of 3)

Mass.


abbreviation for

Massachusetts
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Medicine definitions for mass

mass

[ măs ]

n.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

Science definitions for mass

mass

[ măs ]

A measure of the amount of matter contained in or constituting a physical body. In classical mechanics, the mass of an object is related to the force required to accelerate it and hence is related to its inertia, and is essential to Newton's laws of motion. Objects that have mass interact with each other through the force of gravity. In Special Relativity, the observed mass of an object is dependent on its velocity with respect to the observer, with higher velocity entailing higher observed mass. Mass is measured in many different units; in most scientific applications, the SI unit of kilogram is used. See Note at weight. See also rest energy General Relativity.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Culture definitions for mass (1 of 3)

Mass


The common name in the Roman Catholic Church, and among some members of the Anglican Communion, for the sacrament of Communion.

Note

In the Middle Ages in England, mass meant a religious feast day in honor of a specific person; thus, “Christ's Mass,” or Christmas, is the feast day of Christ; and Michaelmas is the feast day of the angel Michael.

Culture definitions for mass (2 of 3)

Mass


In music, a musical setting for the texts used in the Christian Church at the celebration of the Mass, or sacrament of Communion. Most Masses have been written for use in the Roman Catholic Church.

Note

Many composers have written Masses; among them are Johann Sebastian Bach, Franz Josef Haydn, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Franz Schubert, Leonard Bernstein, and Duke Ellington.

Culture definitions for mass (3 of 3)

mass


In physics, the property of matter that measures its resistance to acceleration. Roughly, the mass of an object is a measure of the number of atoms in it. The basic unit of measurement for mass is the kilogram. (See Newton's laws of motion; compare weight.)

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.