[n. kong-gris; v. kuhn-gres, kuhng-]
(initial capital letter)
the national legislative body of the U.S., consisting of the Senate, or upper house, and the House of Representatives, or lower house, as a continuous institution.
this body as it exists for a period of two years during which it has the same membership: the Ninety-Seventh Congress.
a session of this body: to speak in Congress.
the national legislative body of a nation, especially of a republic.
a formal meeting or assembly of representatives for the discussion, arrangement, or promotion of some matter of common interest.
the act of coming together; an encounter; meeting.
an association, especially one composed of representatives of various organizations.
familiar relations; dealings; intercourse.
coitus; sexual intercourse.
verb (used without object)
to assemble together; meet in congress.

1350–1400 for earlier sense “body of attendants, following”; 1520–30 for current senses; Middle English < Latin congressus assembly, intercourse, meeting, equivalent to congred(ī) to approach, meet (con- con- + -gredī, combining form of gradī to step; cf. grade) + -tus suffix of v. action

pre-Congress, noun

3. conference, council, convention. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
congress (ˈkɒŋɡrɛs)
1.  a meeting or conference, esp of representatives of a number of sovereign states
2.  a national legislative assembly
3.  a society or association
4.  sexual intercourse
[C16: from Latin congressus from congredī to meet with, from com- together + gradī to walk, step]

Congress (ˈkɒŋɡrɛs)
1.  the bicameral federal legislature of the US, consisting of the House of Representatives and the Senate
2.  this body during any two-year term
3.  Also called: Congress Party, Official name: Indian National Congress (in India) a major political party, which controlled the Union government from 1947 to 1977

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Word Origin & History

1520s, from L. congressus "a meeting, hostile encounter," pp. of congredi "meet with, fight with," from com- "together" + gradi "to walk," from gradus "a step" (see grade). Sense of "meeting of delegates" is first recorded 1670s. Meaning "sexual union" is from 1580s. Used
in ref. to the national legislative body of the American states since 1775 (though since 1765 in America as a name for proposed bodies). Congress of Vienna met Nov. 1, 1814, to June 8, 1815, and redrew the map of Europe with an eye to creating a balance of powers after the disruptions of Napoleon. Related: Congressional (1690s).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Cultural Dictionary

Congress definition

The legislative branch of the United States federal government, composed of the House of Representatives and the Senate. Popularly elected, senators and representatives are responsible for advocating the interests of the constituents they represent. Numerous congressional committees are organized to study issues of public policy, recommend action, and, ultimately, pass laws. Congress plays an important role in the system of checks and balances; in fact, the two-house (bicameral) organization of Congress acts as an internal check, for each house must separately vote to pass a bill for it to become a law. In addition to lawmaking, Congress has a variety of functions, including appropriation of funds for executive and judicial activities; instituting taxes and regulating commerce; declaring war and raising and supporting a military; setting up federal courts and conducting impeachment proceedings; and approving presidential appointments.

The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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Example sentences for congress
He is the chairman and interim party leader of the opposition united national
All with a presidential blessing and the ratification of both houses of
The party proved to be a good opponent to the ruling congress.
Supervises the acquisition of books for the law department of the library of
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