1 [mast, mahst]
a spar or structure rising above the hull and upper portions of a ship or boat to hold sails, spars, rigging, booms, signals, etc., at some point on the fore-and-aft line, as a foremast or mainmast.
any of a number of individual spars composing such a structure, as a topmast supported on trestletrees at the head of a lower mast.
any of various portions of a single spar that are beside particular sails, as a top-gallant mast and royal mast formed as a single spar.
Also called pillar. the upright support of a jib crane.
any upright pole, as a support for an aerial, a post in certain cranes, etc.
verb (used with object)
to provide with a mast or masts.
before the mast, Nautical. as an unlicensed sailor: He served several years before the mast.

before 900; Middle English; Old English mæst; cognate with German Mast; akin to Latin mālus pole

mastless, adjective
mastlike, adjective
undermasted, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
mast1 (mɑːst)
1.  nautical any vertical spar for supporting sails, rigging, flags, etc, above the deck of a vessel or any components of such a composite spar
2.  any sturdy upright pole used as a support
3.  nautical Also called: captain's mast a hearing conducted by the captain of a vessel into minor offences of the crew
4.  nautical before the mast as an apprentice seaman
5.  (tr) nautical to equip with a mast or masts
[Old English mæst; related to Middle Dutch mast and Latin mālus pole]

mast2 (mɑːst)
the fruit of forest trees, such as beech, oak, etc, used as food for pigs
[Old English mæst; related to Old High German mast food, and perhaps to meat]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin & History

"long pole on a ship to support the sail," O.E. mæst, from P.Gmc. *mastaz (cf. O.N. mastr, Du., Ger. mast), from PIE *mazdos "a pole, rod" (cf. L. malus "mast," O.Ir. matan "club," Ir. maide "a stick," O.C.S. mostu "bridge"). The single mast of an old ship was the boundary between quarters of officers
and crew, hence before the mast in the title of Dana's book, etc.

"fallen nuts; food for swine," O.E. mæst, from P.Gmc. *mastaz (cf. Du., Ger. mast "mast," O.E. verb mæsten "to fatten, feed"), perhaps from PIE *mazdo-/*maddo- "to be fat, to flow" (cf. Skt. meda "fat," Goth. mats "food," see meat).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Medical Dictionary

mast- pref.
Variant of masto-.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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American Heritage
Abbreviations & Acronyms
military antishock trousers
The American Heritage® Abbreviations Dictionary, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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