From Longman Dictionary of Contemporary Englishmassmass1 /mæs/ ●●○ S3 W3 noun 1 large amount a) [countable]HPLOT/LARGE NUMBER OR AMOUNT a large amount of a substance which does not have a definite or regular shape The food had congealed into a sticky mass.mass of a high mass of rock b) [countable usually singular]LOT/LARGE NUMBER OR AMOUNT a large amount or quantity of somethingmass of a huge mass of data c) masses of something British English informalLOT/LARGE NUMBER OR AMOUNT a large amount of something, or a lot of people or things Masses of books covered every surface in the room.2 crowd [singular]CROWD a large crowdmass of There was a mass of people around the club entrance. The road was blocked by a solid mass of protesters.► see thesaurus at group3 → the masses4 → the mass of people/the population/workers etc5 church ceremony (also Mass) a) [countable, uncountable] the main ceremony in some Christian churches, especially the Roman Catholic Church, which celebrates the last meal that Jesus Christ ate What time do you go to mass?morning/evening/midnight etc Mass Will I see you at morning Mass?say/celebrate Mass (=perform this ceremony as a priest) → High Mass b) [countable] a piece of music written to be performed at the ceremony of mass Mozart’s Mass in C minor6 science [uncountable] technicalHP the amount of material in something The Sun makes up 99.9% of the mass of our solar system. → critical mass
Examples from the Corpusmass• A mass of people stood before the courthouse.• A mass of bodies scrambled over the shelves, everybody was shouting at one another and books were being thrown in all directions.• Aerobic exercise and reduced-calorie diets produce weight loss, but reduce the resting metabolic rate because they do not maintain muscle mass.• The bus station was a seething mass of people.• Balustraded verandas surmounted each level, and a succession of towers projected from the mass of the building.• What would he say of the masses of modern art that you have to plug in in order to fully appreciate?• The mass is apparently about right, and the Z o has appeared at just the right frequency.• Soon afterwards, as in the Western Middle Ages, there were masses of peasant serfs, and great feudal States.solid mass• The drained curd, now a solid mass, is turned out of the muslin and the really hard work of milling begins.• To the Gaijin rear Jotan's five hundred were a solid mass cutting off the line of retreat.• The hygroscopic mixture got damp; when the humidity went down again it caked into an intractable solid mass.• Walls can be cut half-way down or at either side to form dividing slabs rather than solid masses.• It was wild, looking at the solid mass of people and then looking.say/celebrate Mass• Having made that decision, he found he could once again say Mass.• Ask him to be so kind as to come here and say Mass tomorrow morning.• One such male priest conducted a ritual of purification of a church after a woman priest had celebrated Mass there.• Why tear the church apart sO you can see the priest say Mass?• Catholic community that celebrated Mass each Sunday in a chapel on the campus of Georgetown University.• I wasn't able to say Mass.• From about the twelfth century and until the Council, every priest was expected to say Mass separately each day.massmass2 ●●○ W3 adjective [only before noun] PERSON/PEOPLEinvolving or intended for a very large number of people a mass protest weapons of mass destruction the problem of mass unemploymentmass marketing/entertainment etc a mass marketing campaign Email has made mass mailings possible at the touch of a button.
Examples from the Corpusmass• Annie has a degree in mass communications.• mass destruction• Frankish soldiers commit a terrible mass execution of defiant Saxons at Verden.• a mass grave• Today, just a few years after musical compact discs hit the mass market, the long box is history.• Daily newspapers are now becoming popular, providing the first phase of what will later become known as the mass media.• The mass payback continues to improve with each additional mission.• In spite of local differences, modern mass society was beginning to appear.• Air travel was growing rapidly, while the role of mass transit on the ground was shrinking almost everywhere.• At the Pavilion in Bournemouth there was a mass walk out of about 200 disgusted people.mass marketing/entertainment etc• What had arrived now really was mass entertainment.• It provided a vocabulary for the mass marketing of hippies.• In the process it invented mass entertainment, the 10-lane freeway and smog.massmass3 verb [intransitive, transitive] TOGETHERto come together, or to make people or things come together, in a large group SYN gathermass (something) behind/along/in etc something Western reports say that troops have been massing in the region since December. grey clouds massing behind the mountains Both countries have massed troops along the border.→ See Verb table
Examples from the Corpusmass• The animals which fought there gave little heed to defence; they massed around them and tried to engulf them.• Large numbers of women massed behind a single women's rights issue.• Most of our archers were massing in the gatehouse, shooting at those trying to force an entry.• According to some reports both countries then began massing troops in the region.Origin mass1 1. (1300-1400) French masse, from Latin massa, from Greek maza2. (800-900) Vulgar Latin missa “sending away at the end of a religious service”, from Latin mittere “to send”