Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A covering worn on the face to conceal one's identity, as:
  • n. A covering, as of cloth, that has openings for the eyes, entirely or partly conceals the face, and is worn especially at a masquerade ball.
  • n. A grotesque or comical representation of a face, worn especially to frighten or amuse, as at Halloween.
  • n. A facial covering worn for ritual.
  • n. A figure of a head worn by actors in Greek and Roman drama to identify a character or trait and to amplify the voice.
  • n. A protective covering for the face or head.
  • n. A gas mask.
  • n. A usually rubber frame forming a watertight seal around the eyes and nose and containing a transparent covering for use in seeing underwater.
  • n. A covering for the nose and mouth that is used for inhaling oxygen or an anesthetic.
  • n. A covering worn over the nose and mouth, as by a surgeon or dentist, to prevent infection.
  • n. A mold of a person's face, often made after death.
  • n. An often grotesque representation of a head and face, used for ornamentation.
  • n. The face or facial markings of certain animals, such as foxes or dogs.
  • n. A face having a blank, fixed, or enigmatic expression.
  • n. Something, often a trait, that disguises or conceals: "If ever I saw misery under a mask, it was on her face” ( Erskine Childers).
  • n. A natural or artificial feature of terrain that conceals and protects military forces or installations.
  • n. An opaque border or pattern placed between a source of light and a photosensitive surface to prevent exposure of specified portions of the surface.
  • n. The translucent border framing a television picture tube and screen.
  • n. Computer Science A pattern of characters, bits, or bytes used to control the elimination or retention of another pattern of characters, bits, or bytes.
  • n. A cosmetic preparation that is applied to the face and allowed to dry before being removed, used especially for cleansing and tightening the skin.
  • n. Variant of masque.
  • n. A person wearing a mask.
  • transitive v. To cover with a decorative or protective mask.
  • transitive v. To make indistinct or blurred to the senses: spices that mask the strong flavor of the meat.
  • transitive v. To cover in order to conceal, protect, or disguise. See Synonyms at disguise.
  • transitive v. To block the view of: Undergrowth masked the entrance to the cave.
  • transitive v. To cover (a part of a photographic film) by the application of an opaque border.
  • transitive v. Chemistry To prevent (an atom or a group of atoms) from taking part in a normal reaction.
  • intransitive v. To put on a mask, especially for a masquerade ball.
  • intransitive v. To conceal one's real personality, character, or intentions.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A mesh.
  • n. The mesh of a net; a net; net-bag.
  • n. Mash.
  • v. To mash.
  • v. (brewing) To mix malt with hot water to yield wort.
  • n. A cover, or partial cover, for the face, used for disguise or protection.
  • n. That which disguises; a pretext or subterfuge.
  • n. A festive entertainment of dancing or other diversions, where all wear masks; a masquerade; hence, a revel; a frolic; a delusive show - Francis Bacon
  • n. A dramatic performance, formerly in vogue, in which the actors wore masks and represented mythical or allegorical characters.
  • n. A grotesque head or face, used to adorn keystones and other prominent parts, to spout water in fountains, and the like; -- called also mascaron.
  • n. In a permanent fortification, a redoubt which protects the caponiere.
  • n. A screen for a battery
  • n. The lower lip of the larva of a dragonfly, modified so as to form a prehensile organ.
  • n. A ceremonial object used in Puebloan kachina cults that resembles a Euro-American masks. (The term is objected as an appropriate translation by Puebloan peoples as it emphasizes imitation but ignores power and representational intent.)
  • n. A pattern of bits used in bitwise operations; bitmask.
  • n. A two-color (black and white) bitmap generated from an image, used to create transparency in the image.
  • v. To cover, as the face, by way of concealment or defense against injury; to conceal with a mask or visor.
  • v. To disguise; to cover; to hide.
  • v. To conceal; also, to intervene in the line of.
  • v. To cover or keep in check.
  • v. To take part as a masker in a masquerade
  • v. To wear a mask; to be disguised in any way
  • v. To bewilder; confuse.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A cover, or partial cover, for the face, used for disguise or protection
  • n. That which disguises; a pretext or subterfuge.
  • n. A festive entertainment of dancing or other diversions, where all wear masks; a masquerade; hence, a revel; a frolic; a delusive show.
  • n. A dramatic performance, formerly in vogue, in which the actors wore masks and represented mythical or allegorical characters.
  • n. A grotesque head or face, used to adorn keystones and other prominent parts, to spout water in fountains, and the like; -- called also mascaron.
  • n.
  • n. In a permanent fortification, a redoubt which protects the caponiere.
  • n. A screen for a battery.
  • n. The lower lip of the larva of a dragon fly, modified so as to form a prehensile organ.
  • n. A person wearing a mask; a masker.
  • n. The head or face of a fox.
  • intransitive v. To take part as a masker in a masquerade.
  • intransitive v. To wear a mask; to be disguised in any way.
  • transitive v. To cover, as the face, by way of concealment or defense against injury; to conceal with a mask or visor.
  • transitive v. To disguise; to cover; to hide.
  • transitive v.
  • transitive v. To conceal; also, to intervene in the line of.
  • transitive v. To cover or keep in check.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To steep; infuse.
  • To be infused; yield to the process of infusion: as, the tea is masking.
  • An obsolete form of mesh.
  • To cover the face of, wholly or in part, for concealment, disguise, or defense; conceal with a mask or vizor.
  • To cover with a disguising costume of any kind, as in a masquerade.
  • To disguise; conceal; screen from view by something interposed.
  • Synonyms To cloak, veil, screen, shroud.
  • To play a part in a masquerade; go about in masquerade.
  • To put on a mask; disguise one's self in any way.
  • n. A cover for the face with apertures for seeing and breathing; especially, such a cover, usually of silk or velvet, as worn at masquerades; a false face; a vizor.
  • n. A festive entertainment or performance in which the participants are masked or wear a disguising costume; a body of maskers; a masquerade; a revel.
  • n. A form of histrionic spectacle, much in vogue during the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries.
  • n. Anything used or practised for disguise or concealment; anything interposed as a safeguard against observation, discovery, or disclosure; a screen or disguise; a subterfuge, pretext, or shift: as, a mask of brush in front of a battery; suffering under a mask of gaiety.
  • n. A person wearing a mask.
  • n. In sculpture: A representation in any material, as marble, metal, terra-cotta, or wax, of the face only of a figure, or of the face with the front of the neck and upper part of the chest: as, a mask of Jupiter; comic and tragic masks.
  • n. An impression or cast of the face of a person, living or dead, made by covering the face with some plastic or semi-fluid substance, as plaster of Paris, which is removed when it has become sufficiently set.
  • n. In architecture, a representation of a face, generally grotesque, employed to fill and adorn vacant places, as in corbels, friezes, panels of doors, keys of arches, etc.
  • n. In surgery, a linen bandage with apertures for the eyes, nose, and mouth, applied over the face in cases of burns, scalds, erysipelas, etc.
  • n. In zoology: A formation or coloration of the head like a mask; a hood or capistrum. See masked.
  • n. Specifically, in entomology, the greatly enlarged labium or lower lip of the larval and pupal dragon-fly.
  • n. In zoology: The skin of the forehead and upper part of the face of any quadruped, taken off at about the level of the eyes.
  • n. In base-ball, a protection for the face worn by the catcher. See cage, 8.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. a protective covering worn over the face
  • n. activity that tries to conceal something
  • v. make unrecognizable
  • v. shield from light
  • v. cover with a sauce
  • v. hide under a false appearance
  • v. put a mask on or cover with a mask
  • n. a party of guests wearing costumes and masks
  • n. a covering to disguise or conceal the face

Etymologies

French masque, from Italian maschera, from Medieval Latin masca, specter, witch, mask.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Middle English maske, from Old English max, *masc (“net”), from Proto-Germanic *maskwōn (“mesh, netting, mask”), from Proto-Indo-European *mozgʷ-, *mezgʷ- (“to knit, tie”). Cognate with Dutch maas ("mesh"), German Masche ("mesh"), Icelandic möskvi ("mesh"). (Wiktionary)
From Middle English *mask, masch, from Old English māx, māsc ("mash"). More at mash. (Wiktionary)
From Middle English masken, short for *maskeren, malskren ("to bewilder; be confused, wander"). More at masker. (Wiktionary)
From Middle French masque ("a covering to hide or protect the face"), from Italian maschera ("mask, disguise"), from Medieval Latin masca, mascha, mascus ("mask, nightmare, ghost"), of uncertain origin. Replaced Old English grīma ("mask"). (Wiktionary)

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