|1.||a person in charge of or employing others|
|2.||chiefly (US) a professional politician who controls a party machine or political organization, often using devious or illegal methods|
|—vb (usually foll by around |
|3.||to employ, supervise, or be in charge of|
|4.||to be domineering or overbearing towards (others)|
|5.||slang excellent; fine: a boss hand at carpentry; that's boss!|
|[C19: from Dutch baas master; probably related to Old High German basa aunt, Frisian baes master]|
|1.||a knob, stud, or other circular rounded protuberance, esp an ornamental one on a vault, a ceiling, or a shield|
|2.||biology any of various protuberances or swellings in plants and animals|
|3.||a. an area of increased thickness, usually cylindrical, that strengthens or provides room for a locating device on a shaft, hub of a wheel, etc|
|b. a similar projection around a hole in a casting or fabricated component|
|4.||an exposed rounded mass of igneous or metamorphic rock, esp the uppermost part of an underlying batholith|
|5.||to ornament with bosses; emboss|
|[C13: from Old French boce, from Vulgar Latin bottia (unattested); related to Italian bozza metal knob, swelling]|
A circumscribed rounded swelling; a protuberance.
The prominence of a kyphosis or humpback.
in medieval architecture, keystone used in vaulting to provide a junction for intersecting ribs and to cover the actual complex of mitred joints. In medieval England it was highly developed, but in France it was less developed because of the greater height of French naves. By the 13th century, decorative bosses with naturalistic carving were widely used in England (e.g., in the nave at Westminster Abbey, London, and at Ely Cathedral). In the 14th century, bosses comprising a series of narrative scenes appeared, and in the 15th century, fan vaulting was developed with long, pendantlike bosses
Learn more about boss with a free trial on Britannica.com.