Definitions

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

  • n. The 12th letter of the Greek alphabet. See Table at alphabet.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. The 12th letter of the Modern Greek alphabet.
  • n. The name of a mythical floating island.
  • n. A unit of surface area, currently equivalent to 666 and 2/3 meters squared.
  • interj. Neither yes nor no.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. The 12th letter of the Greek alphabet (μ, Μ).

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. The Greek letter μ, corresponding to the English masculine
  • n. The Greek letter M. μ (μῦ, earlier μῶ), corresponding to the English M, m. See M and mem.

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

  • n. the 12th letter of the Greek alphabet

Etymologies

Greek, of Phoenician origin; see my2 in Semitic roots.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Ancient Greek letter μ. (Wiktionary)
From Japanese  (mu, "nothing, neither yes nor no") (Wiktionary)
From Mandarin (simplified: ) (mǔ) (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • Your example of wordpress+mu is a tough one, since it is WordPressMU so the tag “should” be “wordpressmu”.

    Adding Technorati Tags to WordPressMU Sites « Lorelle on WordPress

  • The question I have is if this is the end of politics as we know it, or are we just being fooled by the flash and dash of MoveOn, Meetup, the blogosphere, self publishers, and the thing that got everybody in mu worlds attention, a presidential campaign that broke all sorts of records in raising money from small donors?

    Boing Boing: April 4, 2004 - April 10, 2004 Archives

  • Goofy cartoons of older men and women looking tacky and dumpy (thinking stereotypical Miami) in mu mu’s and oversized sunglasses

    Just Say Don’t—The Sequel (The Boomer Blog)

  • She stopped to buy a green mango cut like a flower and the vendor called her muñeca, doll, an endearment for petite women.

    Watching Pablo Sleep

  • From the expansive vision gained by dying to his sense of separate selfhood, the man from the country suddenly beholds the blocked gate to the Law as what in truth it has always been, a non-barrier, or what Zen calls a mu-mon-kan or gateless gate.

    Kafka and the Coincidence of Opposites

  • The activation in the brain of chemical receptors, called mu-opioid receptors, appears to be involved in producing what is known as the “placebo effect,” according to a report in The Journal of Neuroscience.

    Placebo Effect may actually be Physical | Impact Lab

  • Elementary particles known as mu-mesons, found in cosmic-ray showers, disinte - grate spontaneously, their average “proper lifetime”

    TIME AND MEASUREMENT

  • Also, he spent a lot of time down on the crick flat looking for a mu, which is the same as a sneeze-duck, except for the parallel stripes.

    Ma Pettengill

  • Well, yes, there will be a bit for the lads if they really do begin to play the tune called mu-ti-nee.

    Old Gold The Cruise of the "Jason" Brig

  • Chung notices chubby white radishes called mu, something like daikon; slender red and green chili peppers; and unusual varieties of mushrooms.

    Boston.com Most Popular

Wordnik is becoming a not-for-profit! Read our announcement here.

Comments

Log in or sign up to get involved in the conversation. It's quick and easy.

  • Cf. moo koan.

    November 21, 2011

  • Wikipedia: The word mu is central to the following well-known Zen Buddhist koan, which is also known as the Mu koan1:

    A monk asked Zhaozhou Congshen, a Chinese Zen master (known as Jōshū in Japanese), "Has a dog Buddha-nature or not?" Zhaozhou answered, "Wú" (in Japanese, Mu)
    —The Gateless Gate, koan 1, translation by Robert Aitken 5
    In my family "mu" means "none of the above" or "no answer is the only right answer", for example to the question "have you stopped beating your wife?" "Mu."

    November 21, 2011

  • In Japanese aesthetic vocabulary: expressing a spontaneity that suggests the Buddhist ideal of detachment from self

    November 3, 2008

  • and let's not forget it's a greek letter

    October 20, 2007

  • The Lost Continent of...

    and,

    answer to the Zen koan about "dogginess".

    June 23, 2007

  • I have yet to begin being my wife. Unless you count that whole "the two shall become one flesh thing." Even then, I'm still a bachelor: my answer is a resounding mu!

    May 14, 2007

  • I am so glad you said something, or I wouldn't have scrolled down that far. :)

    May 14, 2007

  • There are a lot of different meanings for this word. I prefer the one used to answer "have you stopped being your wife?".

    May 13, 2007