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[grohs] /groʊs/
adjective, grosser, grossest.
without deductions; total, as the amount of sales, salary, profit, etc., before taking deductions for expenses, taxes, or the like (opposed to net2. ):
gross earnings; gross sales.
unqualified; complete; rank:
a gross scoundrel.
flagrant and extreme:
gross injustice.
indelicate, indecent, obscene, or vulgar:
gross remarks.
lacking in refinement, good manners, education, etc.; unrefined.
large, big, or bulky.
extremely or excessively fat.
thick; dense; heavy:
gross vegetation.
of or concerning only the broadest or most general considerations, aspects, etc.
Slang. extremely objectionable, offensive, or disgusting:
He wore an outfit that was absolutely gross.
noun, plural gross for 11, grosses for 12, 13.
a group of 12 dozen, or 144, things.
Abbreviation: gro.
total income from sales, salary, etc., before any deductions (opposed to net2 (def 5.)).
Obsolete. the main body, bulk, or mass.
verb (used with object)
to have, make, or earn as a total before any deductions, as of taxes, expenses, etc.:
The company grossed over three million dollars last year.
Verb phrases
gross out, Slang.
  1. to disgust or offend, especially by crude language or behavior.
  2. to shock or horrify.
Origin of gross
1350-1400; Middle English < Old French gros large (as noun, grosse twelve dozen) < Late Latin gross(us) thick, coarse
Related forms
grossly, adverb
grossness, noun
outgross, verb (used with object)
overgross, adjective
overgrossly, adverb
overgrossness, noun
ungross, adjective
3. shameful, outrageous, heinous, grievous. See flagrant. 4. low, animal, sensual, broad. 6. massive, great.
4. decent. 6. delicate, small.


[grohs] /groʊs/
Chaim [khahym] /xaɪm/ (Show IPA), 1904–1991, U.S. sculptor and graphic artist, born in Austria. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for gross
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • A Prussian, I mean, in your gross way of blurting out everything.

    Vittoria, Complete George Meredith
  • It may then be found that they are gross, absurd, or inexpedient.

    Folkways William Graham Sumner
  • There was about it a gross, businesslike air that was infinitely depressing.

    The Merry-go-round W. Somerset Maugham
  • It is a gross insult to ask him about her health, or when the wedding will be.

    Folkways William Graham Sumner
  • Boswell mentions his having uttered a remark about Hume, too gross to be committed to paper.

British Dictionary definitions for gross


repellently or excessively fat or bulky
with no deductions for expenses, tax, etc; total: gross sales, gross income Compare net2 (sense 1)
(of personal qualities, tastes, etc) conspicuously coarse or vulgar
obviously or exceptionally culpable or wrong; flagrant: gross inefficiency
lacking in perception, sensitivity, or discrimination: gross judgments
(esp of vegetation) dense; thick; luxuriant
(obsolete) coarse in texture or quality
(rare) rude; uneducated; ignorant
interjection (slang)
an exclamation indicating disgust
(pl) gross. a unit of quantity equal to 12 dozen
(pl) grosses
  1. the entire amount
  2. the great majority
verb (transitive)
to earn as total revenue, before deductions for expenses, tax, etc
See also gross out, gross up
Derived Forms
grossly, adverb
grossness, noun
Word Origin
C14: from Old French gros large, from Late Latin grossus thick
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for gross

mid-14c., "large;" early 15c., "coarse, plain, simple," from Old French gros "big, thick, fat, tall, pregnant; coarse, rude, awkward; ominous, important; arrogant" (11c.), from Late Latin grossus "thick, coarse (of food or mind)," of obscure origin, not in classical Latin. Said to be unrelated to Latin crassus, which meant the same thing, or to German gross "large," but said by Klein to be cognate with Old Irish bres, Middle Irish bras "big." Its meaning forked in English to "glaring, flagrant, monstrous" (1580s) on the one hand and "entire, total, whole" (early 15c.) on the other. Meaning "disgusting" is first recorded 1958 in U.S. student slang, from earlier use as an intensifier of unpleasant things (gross stupidity, etc.). Earlier "coarse in behavior or manners" (1530s) and, of things, "inferior, common" (late 15c.). Gross national product first recorded 1947.


"a dozen dozen," early 15c., from Old French grosse douzaine "large dozen;" see gross (adj.). Earlier as the name of a measure of weight equal to one-eighth of a dram (early 15c.). Sense of "total profit" (opposed to net) is from 1520s.


"to earn a total of," 1884, from gross (n.). Related: Grossed; grossing.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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gross in Medicine

Gross (grōs), Samuel David. 1805-1884.

American surgeon and educator who wrote widely influential medical treatises, including A System of Surgery (1859).

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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gross in Culture

gross definition

Exclusive of deductions, prior to taxation, as in gross income. (Compare net.) Total, aggregate, as in gross domestic product.

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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Slang definitions & phrases for gross



Disgusting; rebarbative; grotty: at this moment (how gross!) blowing kisses into the phone (1958+ Teenagers)

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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