There are 2 main definitions of ma in English:

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ma 1

Pronunciation: /mä/


One’s mother: I didn’t want to make trouble for my ma
More example sentences
  • My ma called to ask if we're having a cake.
  • One of my Ma's friends came up with a second broken chicken crate she'd found rotting in a field in Linden, on the other side of St. George Avenue.
  • My ma drank too much wine and smoked too much.


Early 19th century: abbreviation of mama.

  • mum from Late Middle English:

    Like ma (early 19th century) and mama (mid 16th century), mum (late 16th century) and mummy (mid 18th century) go back eventually to the first semi-articulate sounds made by children, which tend to be ‘ma, ma’. Mother itself probably has the same origin. The expressions mum's the word and to keep mum are perhaps most associated with life during the Second World War, conjuring up warnings about careless talk costing lives—for example, ‘Be like dad. Keep mum.’ Both phrases are much older, being recorded as far back as the early 16th century. The word mum itself was used on its own in medieval times to mean ‘hush!’ or ‘shh!’, and probably originated as a representation of the sound you make when you close your lips firmly together and try to speak. It also gave us mumble (Middle English). Ancient Egyptian mummies are named after the substance in which the dead person's body was embalmed. Mummy in this sense goes back to Arabic mūmiyā ‘bitumen’ for ‘the body of an embalmed person or animal’ mummy is recorded in English from the early 17th century.

Words that rhyme with ma

aargh, Accra, afar, ah, aha, aide-mémoire, ajar, Alcazar, are, Armagh, armoire, Artois, au revoir, baa, bah, bar, barre, bazaar, beaux-arts, Bekaa, bête noire, Bihar, bizarre, blah, Bogotá, Bonnard, bra, cafard, café noir, Calabar, car, Carr, Castlebar, catarrh, Changsha, char, charr, cigar, comme ci comme ça, commissar, coup d'état, de haut en bas, devoir, Dhofar, Directoire, Du Bois, Dumas, Dunbar, éclat, embarras de choix, escritoire, fah, famille noire, far, feu de joie, film noir, foie gras, Fra, galah, gar, guar, guitar, ha, hah, ha-ha, Halacha, hurrah, hussar, huzza, insofar, Invar, jar, je ne sais quoi, ka, kala-azar, Kandahar, khimar, Khorramshahr, knar, Krasnodar, Kwa, la-di-da, lah, Lehár, Loire, mama, mamma, mar, Mardi Gras, ménage à trois, mirepoix, moire, nam pla, Navarre, noir, objet d'art, pa, pah, Panama, papa, par, Pará, Paraná, pas, pâté de foie gras, peau-de-soie, pietà, Pinot Noir, pooh-bah, poult-de-soie, pya, rah, registrar, Saar, Salazar, Sana'a, sang-froid, scar, schwa, Seychellois, shah, Shangri-La, shikar, ska, sol-fa, spa, spar, star, Starr, Stranraer, ta, tahr, tar, tartare, tata, tra-la, tsar, Twa, Villa, voilà, waratah, yah
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There are 2 main definitions of ma in English:

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MA 2

Pronunciation: /ˌem ˈā/


1Massachusetts (in official postal use).
2Master of Arts: David Jones, MA
3 Psychology Mental age.
4Military Academy.
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