noun (1)
\ ˈas How to pronounce ass (audio) \

Definition of ass

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : any of several hardy gregarious (see gregarious sense 1a) African or Asian perissodactyl mammals (genus Equus) smaller than the horse and having long ears especially : an African mammal (E. asinus) that is the ancestor of the donkey
2 informal + impolite : a stupid, stubborn, or detestable person a pompous ass made an ass of himself He was an ass to her, dissing her script (which he apparently lost), telling her women couldn't be artists and that she looked so much prettier with makeup on.— Lauren Piester often compounded with a preceding adjective Don't be a smart-ass.


noun (2)
\ ˈas How to pronounce ass (audio) \
variants: or arse \ ˈas , ˈärs How to pronounce ass (audio) \

Definition of ass (Entry 2 of 3)

1a informal + impolite : buttocks often used in emphatic reference to a specific person Get your ass over here.saved my ass
b informal + impolite : anus
2 offensive : sexual intercourse



Definition of ass (Entry 3 of 3)

informal + impolite
used as a postpositive intensive especially with words of derogatory implication fancy-ass

Synonyms for ass

Synonyms: Noun (1)

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First Known Use of ass

Noun (1)

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Noun (2)

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


circa 1920, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for ass

Noun (1)

Middle English, from Old English assa, probably from Old Irish asan, from Latin asinus

Noun (2) and Adverb

Middle English ars, ers, from Old English ærs, ears; akin to Old High German & Old Norse ars buttocks, Greek orrhos buttocks, oura tail

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Time Traveler for ass

Time Traveler

The first known use of ass was before the 12th century

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Cite this Entry

“Ass.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 12 Aug. 2022.

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More Definitions for ass


\ ˈas How to pronounce ass (audio) \

Kids Definition of ass

1 : an animal that looks like but is smaller than the related horse and has shorter hair in the mane and tail and longer ears : donkey
2 : a stupid or stubborn person
Hint: Sense 2 of the word is often considered impolite, and you may offend people by using it.

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