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From Middle English *amassen (found only as Middle English massen (to amass)), from Anglo-Norman amasser, from Medieval Latin amassāre, from ad + massa (lump, mass). See mass.



amass (third-person singular simple present amasses, present participle amassing, simple past and past participle amassed)

  1. (transitive) To collect into a mass or heap.
  2. (transitive) to gather a great quantity of; to accumulate.
    to amass a treasure or a fortune
    to amass words or phrases
    • 1887, Arthur Conan Doyle, chapter V, in A Study in Scarlet Part II, page 123:
      [] he reluctantly returned to the old Nevada mines, there to recruit his health and to amass money enough to allow him to pursue his object without privation.
  3. (intransitive) To accumulate; to assemble.


Derived terms[edit]



amass (plural amasses)

  1. (obsolete) A large number of things collected or piled together.
    Synonyms: mass, heap, pile
    • 1624, Henry Wotton, “The Seate, and the Worke”, in The Elements of Architecture, [], London: [] Iohn Bill, →OCLC, I. part, page 38:
      [T]his Pillar [the "Compounded Order"] is nothing in effect, but a Medlie, or an Amaſſe of all the precedent Ornaments, making a nevv kinde, by ſtealth, and though the moſt richly tricked, yet the pooreſt in this, that he is a borrovver of all his Beautie.
    • 1788, Thomas Pownall, Notices and Descriptions of Antiquities of the Provincia Romana of Gaul[1], London: John Nichols, page 22:
      [] others are drawn, not as portraits, not strict copies of these most essential characteristic parts, but filled up afterwards from memory, and a general idea of an amass of arms, without the specific one of a trophæal amass, which is the fact of these bas-relieves.
  2. (obsolete) The act of amassing.
    • 1591, William Garrard, The Arte of Warre Book 6[2], London: Roger Warde, page 339:
      He [the general] must neuer permit the Captaines to depart from the place, where he made the Amasse and collection of the Companies, with their bands out of order or disseuered, although they should depart to some place neere adioyning, vnlesse he were forced by some occasion of great necessity and importance: