In late Middle English (circa 1400) as masse in the sense of "lump, quantity of matter", from Anglo-Norman masse, in Old French attested from the 11th century, via late Latin massa ("lump, dough"), from Ancient Greek μᾶζα. The Greek noun is derived from the verb μάσσω, ultimately from a Proto-Indo-European *maǵ-. masa.
The sense of "a large number or quantity" arises circa 1580. The scientific sense is from 1687 (as Latin massa) in the works of Isaac Newton, with the first English use (as mass) occurring in 1704.
From Middle English messe, masse, from Old English mæsse ("the mass, church festival") and Old French messe, from Vulgar Latin *messa ("Eucharist, dismissal"), from Late Latin missa, noun use of feminine past participle of classical Latin mittere ("to send"), from ite, missaest, reanalyzed as "go, [that] is the missa", last words of the Roman Rite of the Catholic Church. Compare Dutch mis ("mass"), German Messe ("mass"), Danish messe ("mass"), Swedish mässa ("mass; expo"), Icelandic messa ("mass"). More at mission.
Modern English dictionary
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