\ ˈləmp How to pronounce lump (audio) \

Definition of lump

 (Entry 1 of 4)

1 : a piece or mass of indefinite size and shape a lump of coal a lump of clay
2a : aggregate, totality taken in the lump
b : majority few candidates ever started with such a lump who did not get the nomination— R. L. Strout
3 : protuberance especially : an abnormal swelling came to with nothing more than a lump on his head
4 : a person who is heavy and awkward a lump of a man also : one who is stupid or dull

5 lumps plural

a : beatings, bruises had taken a lot of lumps growing up in the city
b : defeat, loss can cheerfully take his lumps on losers, because the payout is big on the winners— Martin Mayer
lump in one's throat
: a constriction of the throat caused by emotion


verb (1)
lumped; lumping; lumps

Definition of lump (Entry 2 of 4)

transitive verb

1 : to group indiscriminately
2 : to make into lumps also : to make lumps on or in
3 : to move noisily and clumsily

intransitive verb

1 : to become formed into lumps
2 : to move oneself noisily and clumsily



Definition of lump (Entry 3 of 4)

: not divided into parts : entire a lump sum


verb (2)
lumped; lumping; lumps

Definition of lump (Entry 4 of 4)

transitive verb

: to put up with like it or lump it

Keep scrolling for more

Examples of lump in a Sentence


turning a lump of clay into a beautiful pot He got a lump on his head after bumping into the doorway.

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The doctor performed a manual exam and, thankfully, found no lumps. Lambeth Hochwald, Glamour, "I Got a Mastectomy…Twice," 27 Sep. 2018 Whisk buttermilk mixture into flour mixture until no lumps remain — do not overmix. Eva Katz,, "Recipes: Soft, crisp pancakes with rhubarb, salmon, or chocolate," 11 May 2018 Make batter: Mix all ingredients except filling and powdered sugar until smooth, no lumps. Debbi Snook,, "German Pancakes from Jenn Wirtz of Der Braumeister (recipe)," 9 May 2018 When bowl is chilled, add cream cheese and powdered sugar to bowl and mix until well blended, ensuring there are no lumps. Ann Maloney,, "How to make Whole Food's Berry Chantilly Cake at home," 27 Mar. 2018 Alternately, rub the zest into the sugar using your fingertips until no lumps of zest are left. Jill O'connor,, "Cookbook celebrates versatility of oranges," 26 Mar. 2018 The Tomahawks took their lumps during a 2-8 season last year with a young offensive line. David Krueger, The Seattle Times, "‘It’s revenge time’: Marysville-Pilchuck turns to experienced, beefy offensive line for turnaround," 21 Aug. 2018 Lacasa lost his first and only reelection bid to Demetrio Perez, taking lumps after his personal wealth spiked more than 400 percent to nearly $1 million during his time in office. David Smiley, miamiherald, "Ex-Miami commissioner Armando Lacasa represented exiles, was political commentator," 27 June 2018 The United Nations Environment Program reports that roughly 60% of that lump sum has made its way to landfills or the ocean. Tabor Wordelman, Teen Vogue, "You Can't Just "Clean Up" the Plastic in the Ocean. Here's Why.," 18 Dec. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Netflix doesn't simply lump every film or show with a black lead into a single category. April Joyner, Marie Claire, "Blackflix," 29 Feb. 2016 For the study, hundreds of researchers collaborated to lump together 3,992 estimates for relative risks of alcohol drinking. Beth Mole, Ars Technica, "There’s no risk-free amount of alcohol, population-level study finds," 27 Aug. 2018 Yet colleges and policymakers often don’t realize it because Southeast Asian students’ statistics are lumped in as part of overall Asian student performance. Linda K. Wertheimer, New York Times, "At Middlesex Community College, Extra Help for Asian Students," 5 June 2018 But the main problem Chad had was that a partner who contributes to U.S. counter-terror efforts is essentially being lumped with pariah states such as North Korea and Venezuela on the visa list., "Tillerson Cuts Short Africa Trip Amid ‘Pressing Matters’ in U.S.," 12 Mar. 2018 Stephen Lynch, also a Democrat, from Massachusetts, said that by failing to provide public accountability and thus lumping the good with the bad, the review created moral hazard. The Economist, "Other American banks may have misbehaved as Wells Fargo did. Which ones?," 14 June 2018 Facebook first alerted publishers to its plan to lump advertisements bought by media organizations with those bought by political candidates into the same archive last month. Naomi Nix,, "Facebook Retools Political Ad Rules After Media Blowback," 27 June 2018 Originally, the area consisted of five mini-ramblas: Rambla de Canaletes, Estudis, Sant Josep, Caputxins, and Santa Mònica, but they're often lumped together and today, the street sign says La Rambla. Gemma Askham, Condé Nast Traveler, "20 Best Things to Do in Barcelona," 3 Mar. 2018 Large families are common, and, similar to Alabama's culture, friends often get lumped into the extended family as well. Michael Casagrande,, "Alabama 2018 homecoming date set," 26 Feb. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

At least 17 retirees received additional lump sum payouts for unused vacation and sick time, ranging from about $7,600 to $80,000. Matt Rocheleau,, "As State Police overtime probe intensifies, troopers race to lock in pensions and retire," 2 July 2018 Pieces of lump hardwood charcoal are irregularly shaped, with a more natural appearance than briquettes. Adam Ried,, "Everything you need to know about using a charcoal grill," 29 June 2018 Crab mac includes lump crab meat, tomatoes, baby spinach, and cheese sauce, garnished with snow crab claws. Caroline Szachnowski,, "New England’s best summer foods," 2 May 2018 Menu offerings include lump crab Benedict, lobster frittata and $5 sparkling wine. Jennifer Mcclellan, azcentral, "Fox closing Little Cleo’s restaurant to expand Culinary Dropout in Phoenix," 1 May 2018 And the preparation is certainly a hard one to beat: Generously portioned, lump crab meat is flavored with fresh chives and cilantro along with a bit of Old Bay seasoning, the cakes dredged in panko bread crumbs and pan-fried. Noelle Carter,, "Culinary SOS: Crab cakes from the Watercolour Grillhouse in Florida," 10 Apr. 2018 The crusty cake has no filler, just luscious lump crab meat and a mustard tang in the seasoning. Courtney Dabney, star-telegram, "The Wharf, the new venture from chef Erin Miller, drops anchor in Roanoke | Fort Worth Star-Telegram," 28 Mar. 2018 Edgemoor is expected to complete enough of the terminal design (about 30 percent) to present a lump sum cost. Bill Turque, kansascity, "If KC Council and Edgemoor get engaged this week, can they make it to the altar?," 6 Feb. 2018 Where benefits can reasonably be adjusted appears to be in the area of future promises by limiting cost of living increases and lump sum distributions instead of monthly payouts. Steve Butler, The Mercury News, "Butler: Guess who loses when pension plans hit hard times," 8 June 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'lump.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of lump


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb (1)

1624, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1


circa 1700, in the meaning defined above

Verb (2)

1791, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for lump

Noun, Verb (1), and Adjective

Middle English

Verb (2)

origin unknown

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about lump

Dictionary Entries near lump





lump coal



Statistics for lump

Last Updated

19 Feb 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for lump

The first known use of lump was in the 14th century

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for lump



English Language Learners Definition of lump

: a small piece or mass of something
: an area of swelling or growth on your body


\ ˈləmp How to pronounce lump (audio) \

Kids Definition of lump

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : a small piece or chunk a lump of coal
2 : a swelling or growth She got a lump on her forehead.
3 : a tight feeling in the throat caused by emotion


lumped; lumping

Kids Definition of lump (Entry 2 of 3)

1 : to group together Lump all the clothing into one pile.
2 : to form into lumps The gravy lumped.



Kids Definition of lump (Entry 3 of 3)

: not divided into parts a lump sum


\ ˈləmp How to pronounce lump (audio) \

Medical Definition of lump

1 : a piece or mass of indefinite size and shape
2 : an abnormal mass or swelling presenting as a neck lump

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on lump

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for lump

Spanish Central: Translation of lump

Nglish: Translation of lump for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of lump for Arabic Speakers

Comments on lump

What made you want to look up lump? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


the way words of a language are spelled

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

A Green Quiz

  • shamrock
  • What is the best definition of green-eyed monster?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?


Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.


Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!