mass

Anything that has weight and shape has mass. In fact, mass is the quality that gives things weight anywhere there's gravity.

If you think about mass being about weight and shape, you can see how many of its meanings are related. If something is very big we say it has great mass — or is massive. If we talk about a large group of people, we talk about a mass demonstration or a mass of demonstrators. We refer to poor or common people as the masses — there are a lot of them. Doctors refer to tumors inside our bodies as masses.

Definitions of mass
1

n the property of a body that causes it to have weight in a gravitational field

Types:
show 14 types...
hide 14 types...
body
the main mass of a thing
biomass
the total mass of living matter in a given unit area
critical mass
the minimum mass of fissionable material that can sustain a chain reaction
rest mass
(physics) the mass of a body as measured when the body is at rest relative to an observer, an inherent property of the body
relativistic mass
(physics) the mass of a body in motion relative to the observer: it is equal to the rest mass multiplied by a factor that is greater than 1 and that increases as the magnitude of the velocity increases
bulk
the property possessed by a large mass
gravitational mass
(physics) the mass of a body as measured by its gravitational attraction for other bodies
inertial mass
(physics) the mass of a body as determined by the second law of motion from the acceleration of the body when it is subjected to a force that is not due to gravity
atomic mass, atomic weight, relative atomic mass
(chemistry) the mass of an atom of a chemical element expressed in atomic mass units
mass energy
(physics) the mass of a body regarded relativistically as energy
molecular weight, relative molecular mass
(chemistry) the sum of the relative atomic masses of the constituent atoms of a molecule
mass defect, mass deficiency
the amount by which the mass of an atomic nucleus is less than the sum of the masses of its constituent particles
combining weight, eq, equivalent, equivalent weight
the atomic weight of an element that has the same combining capacity as a given weight of another element; the standard is 8 for oxygen
meq, milliequivalent
one-thousandth of an equivalent
Type of:
physical property
any property used to characterize matter and energy and their interactions
fundamental measure, fundamental quantity
one of the four quantities that are the basis of systems of measurement

n a body of matter without definite shape

“a huge ice mass
Types:
show 6 types...
hide 6 types...
coprolith, faecalith, fecalith, stercolith
a hard mass of fecal matter
drift
a large mass of material that is heaped up by the wind or by water currents
mat
a mass that is densely tangled or interwoven
mush, pulp
any soft or soggy mass
drumlin
a mound of glacial drift
snowdrift
a mass of snow heaped up by the wind
Type of:
body
an individual 3-dimensional object that has mass and that is distinguishable from other objects

n an ill-structured collection of similar things (objects or people)

Types:
logjam
an immovable mass of logs blocking a river
shock
a bushy thick mass (especially hair)
Type of:
accumulation, aggregation, assemblage, collection
several things grouped together or considered as a whole

n the common people generally

“separate the warriors from the mass
Synonyms:
hoi polloi, masses, multitude, people, the great unwashed
Types:
show 8 types...
hide 8 types...
laity, temporalty
in Christianity, members of a religious community that do not have the priestly responsibilities of ordained clergy
audience
the part of the general public interested in a source of information or entertainment
followers, following
a group of followers or enthusiasts
readership
the audience reached by written communications (books or magazines or newspapers etc.)
TV audience, viewers, viewing audience
the audience reached by television
claque
a group of followers hired to applaud at a performance
faithful
any loyal and steadfast following
fandom
the fans of a sport or famous person
Type of:
group, grouping
any number of entities (members) considered as a unit

n the property of something that is great in magnitude

“he received a mass of correspondence”
Synonyms:
bulk, volume
Types:
dollar volume, turnover
the volume measured in dollars
Type of:
magnitude
the property of relative size or extent (whether large or small)

n (often followed by `of') a large number or amount or extent

Synonyms:
batch, deal, flock, good deal, great deal, hatful, heap, lot, mess, mickle, mint, mountain, muckle, passel, peck, pile, plenty, pot, quite a little, raft, sight, slew, spate, stack, tidy sum, wad
Types:
deluge, flood, inundation, torrent
an overwhelming number or amount
haymow
a mass of hay piled up in a barn for preservation
Type of:
large indefinite amount, large indefinite quantity
an indefinite quantity that is above the average in size or magnitude

adj formed of separate units gathered into a mass or whole

Synonyms:
aggregate, aggregated, aggregative
collective
forming a whole or aggregate

v join together into a mass or collect or form a mass

“Crowds were massing outside the palace”
Types:
press
crowd closely
Type of:
crowd, crowd together
to gather together in large numbers

Sign up, it's free!

Whether you're a student, an educator, or a lifelong learner, Vocabulary.com can put you on the path to systematic vocabulary improvement.