Mass (?), v. i. [imp. & p.
p. Massed (?); p. pr. & vb. n.
Massing.] To celebrate Mass. [Obs.]
Mass, v. t. To form or collect
into a mass; to form into a collective body; to bring together into
masses; to assemble.
But mass them together and they are terrible
Mass, n. [OE. masse, F.
masse, L. massa; akin to Gr. ? a barley cake, fr. ?
to knead. Cf. Macerate.]
1. A quantity of matter cohering together so
as to make one body, or an aggregation of particles or things which
collectively make one body or quantity, usually of considerable size;
as, a mass of ore, metal, sand, or water.
If it were not for these principles, the bodies of the
earth, planets, comets, sun, and all things in them, would grow cold
and freeze, and become inactive masses. Sir I.
A deep mass of continual sea is slower
2. (Phar.) A medicinal substance made
into a cohesive, homogeneous lump, of consistency suitable for making
pills; as, blue mass.
3. A large quantity; a sum.
All the mass of gold that comes into
Spain. Sir W. Raleigh.
He had spent a huge mass of
treasure. Sir J. Davies.
4. Bulk; magnitude; body; size.
This army of such mass and charge.
5. The principal part; the main
Night closed upon the pursuit, and aided the
mass of the fugitives in their escape. Jowett
6. (Physics) The quantity of matter
which a body contains, irrespective of its bulk or volume.
☞ Mass and weight are often used, in a general
way, as interchangeable terms, since the weight of a body is
proportional to its mass (under the same or equal gravitative
forces), and the mass is usually ascertained from the
weight. Yet the two ideas, mass and weight, are
quite distinct. Mass is the quantity of matter in a body;
weight is the comparative force with which it tends towards
the center of the earth. A mass of sugar and a mass of
lead are assumed to be equal when they show an equal weight by
balancing each other in the scales.
Blue mass. See under Blue. --
Mass center (Geom.), the center of
gravity of a triangle. -- Mass copper,
native copper in a large mass. -- Mass
meeting, a large or general assembly of people, usually
a meeting having some relation to politics. -- The
masses, the great body of the people, as contrasted
with the higher classes; the populace.
Mass (?), n. [OE. masse,
messe, AS. mæsse. LL. missa, from L.
mittere, missum, to send, dismiss: cf. F. messe.
In the ancient churches, the public services at which the catechumens
were permitted to be present were called missa catechumenorum,
ending with the reading of the Gospel. Then they were
dismissed with these words : "Ite, missa est" [sc.
ecclesia], the congregation is dismissed. After that the sacrifice
proper began. At its close the same words were said to those who
remained. So the word gave the name of Mass to the sacrifice
in the Catholic Church. See Missile, and cf. Christmas,
Lammas, Mess a dish, Missal.]
1. (R. C. Ch.) The sacrifice in the
sacrament of the Eucharist, or the consecration and oblation of the
2. (Mus.) The portions of the Mass
usually set to music, considered as a musical composition; -- namely,
the Kyrie, the Gloria, the Credo, the
Sanctus, and the Agnus Dei, besides sometimes an
Offertory and the Benedictus.
Canon of the Mass. See Canon. --
High Mass, Mass with incense, music, the
assistance of a deacon, subdeacon, etc. -- Low
Mass, Mass which is said by the priest throughout,
without music. -- Mass bell, the sanctus
bell. See Sanctus. -- Mass book,
the missal or Roman Catholic service book.