mass-n; 6 Senses

Sense Number 1: gravitational weight of a body of matter

Commentary: MASS[+quantity][+measure][+weight][+gravitational]
NOTE: refers to a body's weight, not the body itself.
NOTE: answers the question 'how much weight'

The mass of the sun is much greater than the mass of the earth.
Bosons, e.g., photons, are elementary particles that do not have mass.
Mass spectroscopy is used to determine the masses of small electrically charged particles.
Energy equals mass times the speed of light squared. (E=Mc^2)
What is the mass number of nitrogen?
With a sigh, the corpulent man set his great mass down at the dining table. (his heavy weight)

WordNet 3.0 Sense Numbers: 1

Sense Number 2: a large, indefinite quantity

Commentary: MASS[+quantity][+large][+indefinite]
NOTE: refers to a bunch of things as a collection
NOTE: refers to 'how many'

A mass of tangled cables lay on the floor of the computer room.
Mass production has led to lower costs for many consumer items.
The mass murderer got ten consecutive life sentences. (killed many)
The word 'spaghetti' in English is considered to be a mass noun.
There is a mass of unopened letters on Bob's desk.
They have compiled a mass of evidence in support of their theory.
He's trying to decide how to invest such a great mass of money.
I have masses of homework to do this evening.
The girl removed her hat, and a mass of curly dark hair fell to her shoulders.

WordNet 3.0 Sense Numbers: 2, 3, 7

Sense Number 3: Catholic religious ceremony

Commentary: MASS[+event][+ceremony][+religious][+Catholic]

There is some discussion of conducting masses in Latin again, instead of English.
Mary overslept and missed going to mass on Sunday.
The priest said a mass for the dying man.

WordNet 3.0 Sense Numbers: 4, 9

Sense Number 4: a body of matter, often without clearly defined structure

Commentary: MASS[+entity][+body][+matter][-structured]
NOTE: refers to the body itself, -not- how much it weighs (Sense 1)

The mass of the continent is buried under an ice cap.
The doctor removed a small mass from the patient's lower intestine.
From a distance the trees on the hillside appeared as a dark mass.
The zygote was still an undifferentiated mass of cells.

WordNet 3.0 Sense Numbers: 5

Sense Number 5: multitude of people, throngs, crowds

Commentary: MASS[+entity][+group][+people][+multitude]
NOTE: always refers to a group of people
NOTE: a narrow, specialized use of Sense 2

A huge mass of people had assembled in San Marco's Square in Venice.
They were trying to avoid mass hysteria about a possible anthrax attack.
The woman described the villagers as part of the unwashed masses of humanity.
He has worked in the mass media for several decades.

WordNet 3.0 Sense Numbers: 6

Sense Number 6: a genre of classical music

Commentary: MASS[+quality][+style][+genre][+music][+classical][+vocal][+religious]

It's a beautiful mass by Mozart in C Minor.
The chorus is performing two 18th-century masses with a chamber orchestra.

WordNet 3.0 Sense Numbers: 8