mas·​sage | \ mə-ˈsäzh How to pronounce massage (audio) , -ˈsäj How to pronounce massage (audio) \

Definition of massage

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: manipulation of tissues (as by rubbing, kneading, or tapping) with the hand or an instrument for relaxation or therapeutic purposes gave him a neck massage


massaged; massaging

Definition of massage (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to subject to massage
2a : to treat flatteringly : blandish
b : manipulate, doctor massaged the data to help his cause

Other Words from massage


massager noun

Examples of massage in a Sentence

Noun She gave him a neck massage. using massage to help relax Verb She massaged her leg until the numbness was gone. a candidate who knows that you have to massage the voters if you want to get elected
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Fitness is just as key, so enjoying a subalpine hike around the region before some spa time and a therapeutic massage is highly recommended. CNN, 27 Apr. 2022 The small spa team stays busy serving the area and overnight guests, Atkins said, with the couple’s massage being a favorite. Washington Post, 2 Mar. 2022 Gyms, beauty massage parlors, cinemas and places of worship may also reopen from April 21, but with restrictions. K.j. Yossman, Variety, 14 Apr. 2022 Brothels posing as massage parlors advertised through Backpage. Washington Post, 8 Apr. 2022 It’s been one year since six Asian women were murdered in a string of shootings at Atlanta-area massage parlors. Jane Mo, USA TODAY, 15 Mar. 2022 In March 2021, a gunman's rampage at several Atlanta massage parlors left eight people dead, six of them Asian American women. Mary Ellen Cagnassola,, 27 Jan. 2022 The first disbursement, of a hundred and thirty thousand dollars, came in March, shortly after a white man killed eight people, six of them Asian women, at three Atlanta-area spas and massage parlors. Hua Hsu, The New Yorker, 13 Dec. 2021 Investigators surveilled both massage parlors and saw Wang working there. Cathy Kozlowicz, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 18 Nov. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Not everyone has someone to massage their feet or the time to get one done professionally. Elizabeth Ayoola, Essence, 6 May 2022 Take a moment to massage your eye area with the metal rollerball in the morning, after taking it out of the chiller. Grooming Playbook, The Salt Lake Tribune, 5 Apr. 2022 Overall, the best brushes have the same general process: Remove your makeup, apply cleanser to wet skin, and massage along your face in circular motions for a minute or so. ELLE, 28 Apr. 2022 Simply put a drop on your fingertips and massage it gently around the eye area. Grooming Playbook, The Salt Lake Tribune, 5 Apr. 2022 Trump’s foreign policy preferences, and the mythology that’s been erected around it to massage it into coherence, has reemerged in a few ways in response to the Ukraine crisis. Alex Shephard, The New Republic, 23 Feb. 2022 The seats use a combination of air bladders, vibration motors, and even heating elements to massage their occupants. Jonathan M. Gitlin, Ars Technica, 31 Mar. 2022 Swirl your brushes in the water and gently massage the bristles to further remove the gunk. ELLE, 31 Mar. 2022 Those moves, along with a commitment to alternating between standing, sitting and using a foam roller on the floor to massage his back, have brought relief. Sal Vaglica, WSJ, 9 Feb. 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of massage


circa 1860, in the meaning defined above


1887, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for massage

Noun and Verb

French, from masser to massage, from Arabic massa to stroke

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Time Traveler for massage

Time Traveler

The first known use of massage was circa 1860

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Dictionary Entries Near massage

mass action


massage parlor

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Statistics for massage

Last Updated

16 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Massage.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 25 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for massage


mas·​sage | \ mə-ˈsäzh How to pronounce massage (audio) \

Kids Definition of massage

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a soothing treatment of the body done by rubbing, kneading, and tapping


massaged; massaging

Kids Definition of massage (Entry 2 of 2)

: to give a soothing treatment to (the body) by rubbing, stroking, or pressing with the hands


mas·​sage | \ mə-ˈsäzh How to pronounce massage (audio) , -ˈsäj How to pronounce massage (audio) \

Medical Definition of massage

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: manipulation of tissues (as by rubbing, stroking, kneading, or tapping) with the hand or an instrument especially for therapeutic purposes


transitive verb
massaged; massaging

Medical Definition of massage (Entry 2 of 2)

: to treat by means of massage

More from Merriam-Webster on massage

Nglish: Translation of massage for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of massage for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about massage


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