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A school class


From Middle French classe, from Latin classis (a class or division of the people, assembly of people, the whole body of citizens called to arms, the army, the fleet, later a class or division in general), from Proto-Indo-European *kelh₁- (to call, shout). Doublet of clas and classis.



class (countable and uncountable, plural classes)

  1. (countable) A group, collection, category or set sharing characteristics or attributes.
    The new Ford Fiesta is set to be best in the 'small family' class.
    That is one class-A heifer you got there, sonny.
    Often used to imply membership of a large class.
    This word has a whole class of metaphoric extensions.
    • 2011 October 1, Saj Chowdhury, “Wolverhampton 1-2 Newcastle”, in BBC Sport:
      The Magpies are unbeaten and enjoying their best run since 1994, although few would have thought the class of 2011 would come close to emulating their ancestors.
  2. (sociology, countable) A social grouping, based on job, wealth, etc. In Britain, society is commonly split into three main classes: upper class, middle class and working class.
    • 2013 June 28, Joris Luyendijk, “Our banks are out of control”, in The Guardian Weekly, volume 189, number 3, page 21:
      Seeing the British establishment struggle with the financial sector is like watching an alcoholic […].  Until 2008 there was denial over what finance had become. […]  But the scandals kept coming, and so we entered stage three – what therapists call "bargaining". A broad section of the political class now recognises the need for change but remains unable to see the necessity of a fundamental overhaul. Instead it offers fixes and patches.
  3. (uncountable) The division of society into classes.
    Jane Austen's works deal with class in 18th-century England.
  4. (uncountable) Admirable behavior; elegance.
    Apologizing for losing your temper, even though you were badly provoked, showed real class.
  5. (education, countable and uncountable) A group of students in a regularly scheduled meeting with a teacher.
    The class was noisy, but the teacher was able to get their attention with a story.
  6. A series of lessons covering a single subject.
    I took the cooking class for enjoyment, but I also learned a lot.
  7. (countable) A group of students who commenced or completed their education during a particular year. A school class.
    The class of 1982 was particularly noteworthy.
  8. (countable) A category of seats in an airplane, train or other means of mass transportation.
    I used to fly business class, but now my company can only afford economy.
    • 2012, Andrew Martin, Underground Overground: A passenger's history of the Tube, Profile Books, →ISBN, page 101:
      The City & South London was also the first British passenger railway to offer only one class.
  9. (taxonomy, countable) A rank in the classification of organisms, below phylum and above order; a taxon of that rank.
    Magnolias belong to the class Magnoliopsida.
  10. Best of its kind.
    It is the class of Italian bottled waters.
    • 1913 June 27, “The Crime Is Not in Making a Mistake, but in Repeating It.”, in Chicago Tribune:
      The mark made by Cory a new Central A. U. mark and he appears to be the class of the field in this event.
    • 1929 October 27, “89,000 Watch So. California Defeat Stanford, 7 to 0”, in Chicago Tribune:
      University of Southern California's 7 to 0 defeat of the mighty Cardinal team ranked the victors the class of the far west
    • 2009 May 8, “Waianae forces OIA rematch”, in Honolulu Star-Bulletin:
      Roosevelt (14-1) looked very much like the class of the OIA.
  11. (statistics) A grouping of data values in an interval, often used for computation of a frequency distribution.
  12. (set theory) A collection of sets definable by a shared property, especially one which is not itself a set (in which case the class is called proper).
    The class of all sets is not a set.
    Every set is a class, but classes are not generally sets. A class that is not a set is called a proper class.
    • 1973, Abraham Fraenkel, Yehoshua Bar-Hillel, Azriel Lévy, Foundations of Set Theory, 2nd edition, Elsevier, page 119:
      In the present section we shall discuss the various systems of set theory which admit, beside sets, also classes. Classes are like sets, except that they can be very comprehensive; an extreme example of a class is the class which contains all sets. [] The main point which will, in our opinion, emerge from this analysis is that set theory with classes and set theory with sets only are not two separate theories; they are, essentially, different formulations of the same underlying theory.
  13. (military) A group of people subject to be conscripted in the same military draft, or more narrowly those persons actually conscripted in a particular draft.
  14. (object-oriented programming, countable) A set of objects having the same behavior (but typically differing in state), or a template defining such a set in terms of its common properties, functions, etc.
    an abstract base class
  15. One of the sections into which a Methodist church or congregation is divided, supervised by a class leader.



programming, object-oriented: A set of objects having the same behavior or a template defining such a set

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The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout § Translations.


class (third-person singular simple present classes, present participle classing, simple past and past participle classed)

  1. (transitive) To assign to a class; to classify.
    I would class this with most of the other mediocre works of the period.
    • 1918, W[illiam] B[abington] Maxwell, chapter II, in The Mirror and the Lamp, Indianapolis, Ind.: The Bobbs-Merrill Company, →OCLC:
      She was a fat, round little woman, richly apparelled in velvet and lace, [] ; and the way she laughed, cackling like a hen, the way she talked to the waiters and the maid, []—all these unexpected phenomena impelled one to hysterical mirth, and made one class her with such immortally ludicrous types as Ally Sloper, the Widow Twankey, or Miss Moucher.
  2. (intransitive) To be grouped or classed.
    • 1790, Edward Tatham, The Chart and Scale of Truth:
      the genus or family under which it classes
  3. (transitive) To divide into classes, as students; to form into, or place in, a class or classes.

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class (not comparable)

  1. (Ireland, Geordie, slang) great; fabulous
    • 2009, Erik Qualman, Socialnomics:
      To talented authors Tim Ash and Brian Reich for introducing me to John Wiley & Sons—a truly class outfit.

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Old Irish[edit]



  1. passive singular preterite conjunct of claidid


Old Irish mutation
Radical Lenition Nasalization
·class ·chlass ·class
pronounced with /-ɡ(ʲ)-/
Note: Some of these forms may be hypothetical. Not every
possible mutated form of every word actually occurs.