\ 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

Dozens of district employees showed up at Thursday's board meeting, many pointing to other districts across the state that gave raises of up to 10% to teachers, or lump-sum bumps based on years of experience. Dallas News, "Dallas ISD approved teacher raises, lower tax rate, but what does that mean for teachers, taxpayers?," 1 July 2019 Soon after the release of her So Rich Lipsticks, customers started to call out manufacturing flaws, including tiny black holes and lumps, on social media. Thatiana Diaz,, "Jaclyn Hill Is Giving Every Person Who Bought Her Lipstick A Refund," 25 June 2019 The lump sum payment before taxes would be about $70.4 million. Carlie Kollath Wells,, "$1 million Powerball ticket sold in Baton Rouge," 24 June 2019 Several audio companies have been migrating over toward alternative payment models that don’t require a lump sum up front. Dani Deahl, The Verge, "Slate Digital’s new music software subscription service includes all its plug-ins and an online school," 23 June 2019 After discovering a lump under her left ear, she was diagnosed with the form of cancer that about 1,200 people are afflicted with each year. Forum News Service, Twin Cities, "Gabriele Grunewald, national running champion and Gophers star, dies at 32," 11 June 2019 There’s a small lump, rising no more than a foot or two from the forest floor. Nathaniel Scharping, Discover Magazine, "The Lost World of the Maya is Finally Emerging From the Jungle," 7 Feb. 2019 Manzanarez went to the lottery’s Tallahassee headquarters to claim his $15 million top prize and chose to receive his winnings as a one-time, lump-sum payment of $10,440,000. Wayne K. Roustan,, "South Floridian wins $15 million in lottery scratch-off game," 21 June 2019 That doctor ordered an emergency operation to remove the lump. Kayleigh Roberts, Marie Claire, "Kate Middleton Underwent an Emergency Operation in High School," 9 June 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Founded in 1967 in Bangkok in the Cold War era, the diverse 10-nation bloc lumps together an absolute monarchy and constitutional monarchies, along with socialist republics and fledgling democracies. Kaweewit Kaewjinda,, "ASEAN leaders call for restraint amid sea row, US-China rift," 23 June 2019 Armed with statistics indicating that the venerated host has been in a ratings slide for a decade, new network president Caroline Morton (a forceful Amy Ryan) tells Newbury that, like it or lump it, her current year is going to be her last. Kenneth Turan, San Diego Union-Tribune, "Review: Kaling and Thompson make ‘Late Night’ a great night," 13 June 2019 Armed with statistics indicating that the venerated host has been in a ratings slide for a decade, new network president Caroline Morton (a forceful Amy Ryan) tells Newbury that, like it or lump it, her current year is going to be her last. Kenneth Turan,, "Review: Mindy Kaling and Emma Thompson make ‘Late Night’ a great night," 4 June 2019 To defend Jews from such slanders was to risk being lumped together with them. Sara Lipton, The New York Review of Books, "A Terribly Durable Myth," 17 June 2019 State law lumps hemp in with marijuana and subjects it to state and federal drug laws. Laura Hancock,, "Bill legalizing industrial hemp, CBD products to hit Ohio House floor," 4 June 2019 In the beginning Jillian tried correcting articles that lumped Arthur and her in with the Purdue side of the family by calling the writers herself. Norman Vanamee, Town & Country, "How Sackler Became the Most Toxic Name in Philanthropy," 16 May 2019 To avoid being lumped in with generic or rude Furby content on the platform, the true Furby fans on Tumblr label their posts with #furbyfandom. Kaitlyn Tiffany, Vox, "Every Furby gets a home," 21 Dec. 2018 The effect has been to profile young Latinos and African American men, lumping together those with serious criminal records with those who happen to live on the same block or share a relative. Valerie Strauss, Washington Post, "Algorithms: Why you should learn what they are, how they affect you and your kids — and whether they actually work," 5 Apr. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

Jumbo lump crab takes well to being simmered in coconut milk, bright with turmeric and racy with red chile. Tom Sietsema, Washington Post, "Commonwealth Indian is dressed to thrill in Rockville," 26 June 2019 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

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

9 Jul 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).


appealing forcibly to the mind or reason

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Farm Idioms Quiz

  • cow coming home
  • What does 'poke' refer to in the expression 'pig in a poke'?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!


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!