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class Line breaks: class
Pronunciation: /klɑːs/

Definition of class in English:


1A set or category of things having some property or attribute in common and differentiated from others by kind, type, or quality: it has good accommodation for a hotel of this class a new class of heart drug
More example sentences
  • Aristotle recognizes different sociopolitical classes or categories of women and men.
  • Things, like predicates, come in different sorts; and if there are ten classes or categories of predicate, there are ten classes or categories of things.
  • It is not possible to show that every instance of the subject class has this property.
category, grade, rating, classification, group, grouping, bracket, set, division
kind, sort, type, order, variety, genre, brand;
species, genus, family, generation, breed, strain, denomination;
stamp, ilk, kidney, style, cast, grain, mould;
North American  stripe
technical phylum
1.1 Biology A principal taxonomic grouping that ranks above order and below phylum or division, such as Mammaliaor Insecta.
Example sentences
  • These phenotypic classes are discussed below, with reference to previously identified zebrafish melanocyte mutants.
  • The species are presented alphabetically within taxonomic classes.
  • Within the large arthropods we found that birds consistently reduced numbers from all taxonomic classes.
1.2British A division of candidates according to merit in a university examination: he received a third class in literae humaniores
2 [mass noun] A system of ordering society whereby people are divided into sets based on perceived social or economic status: people who are socially disenfranchised by class [as modifier]: the class system
More example sentences
  • But the underlying economic and class systems were exactly the same as in Western capitalist countries.
  • The old two-tier class system will become three-tier and the most disadvantaged will have been sold down the river.
  • The central characteristic of the society we live in is that it is divided by class.
2.1 [count noun] A social division based on social or economic status: the ruling class
More example sentences
  • The English ruling class had men of high calibre to call upon.
  • Poor people's energies should be refocused in united actions against the capitalist ruling class.
  • They portrayed the ruling capitalist class as all-powerful and able to exploit, manipulate and deceive workers at will.
2.2 (the classes) archaic The rich or educated.
2.3 informal Impressive stylishness in appearance or behaviour: she’s got class—she looks like a princess
More example sentences
  • Critics say he is a mercenary and a poor trainer, but there have been flashes of class in his brief appearances in claret and amber.
  • Liverpool fans must distinguish between clusters of defeats and real decline in class.
  • In my opinion it just felt right, and captured a real sense of class and style.
style, stylishness, elegance, chic, sophistication, taste, refinement;
quality, excellence, distinction, merit, prestige;
French savoir faire, savoir vivre
humorous couth
3A group of students or pupils who are taught together: selected pupils act as representatives for the whole class
More example sentences
  • The basic problem in state schools is not that pupils are taught together in classes which are too large.
  • I was really privileged being in the last class of graduate students taught by my theory of international law guru.
  • Teachers in Queensland schools are required to teach classes of 30 students.
form, study group, school group, set, stream, band;
North American  grade
3.1An occasion when pupils meet with their teacher for instruction; a lesson: I was late for a class
More example sentences
  • The strike went ahead although teachers did not suspend classes at high schools.
  • Just like a school teacher has their class planned out for the next day, so must you.
  • The way in which students enter and leave the art room can affect their learning as well as the art teacher's preparation for classes.
lesson, period, period of instruction;
seminar, tutorial, workshop
3.2A course of instruction: I took classes in Indian music
More example sentences
  • One nurse had not worked in nursing for a few years and was taking the class as a refresher course.
  • This last course is a class for art education majors and art majors interested in teaching.
  • Being able to review the coursework from other classes is a practical benefit that faculty members find appealing.
3.3chiefly North American All of the college or school students of a particular year: the class of 1999
More example sentences
  • No doubt their absence has muted the impact of the class of 2004 on the college game.
  • Students from the class of 1964 along with their past teachers had a great night of craic and memories.
  • The information was based on an analysis of the numbers from the class of medical students set to begin their studies in the fall of 2004.


[with object] (often be classed as) Back to top  
Assign or regard as belonging to a particular category: conduct which is classed as criminal
More example sentences
  • The problem is that any sort of spending in Scottish football is classed as splashing the cash.
  • If they quit that accommodation, the report argues, they may be classed as intentionally homeless.
  • For taxation purposes, the deal has been officially classed as a demerger rather than a management buyout.
classify, categorize, group, grade, rate, type;
order, sort, codify, file, index;
bracket, designate, brand, mark down, label, pigeonhole;
Medicine  triage


[attributive] informal Back to top  
Showing stylish excellence: he’s a class player
More example sentences
  • There are no stupid comments about having 24 class players.
  • It's disappointing straight after the match, but I was beaten by a class player.
  • However, on Saturday he showed the class player he is scoring an effortless hundred and he would still be not out if we were playing now!
excellent, very good, first-rate, first-class, marvellous, wonderful, magnificent, outstanding, superlative, superb, formidable, virtuoso, masterly, expert, champion, fine, consummate, skilful, adept
informal great, terrific, tremendous, smashing, fantastic, sensational, stellar, fabulous, fab, supercalifragilisticexpialidocious, crack, hotshot, A1, mean, demon, awesome, magic, wicked, tip-top, top-notch
British informal brilliant, brill
vulgar slang shit-hot


class A (or B or C) drug
An illegal narcotic drug classified as being of the most harmful and addictive (or a less harmful and addictive) kind, possession or sale of which incurs corresponding legal penalties.
Example sentences
  • He was jailed for 30 months for possession of class A drugs, namely heroin and cocaine, with intent to supply.
  • He was jailed for nine years after pleading guilty to conspiracy to supply class A drugs and possession of cocaine and cannabis.
  • People taking class A drugs (cocaine and heroin) cost society millions of pounds a year.
class act
informal A person or thing displaying impressive and stylish excellence: the writing and the look of the magazine make it a real class act
More example sentences
  • The leader ran on like a real class act and finished really well to clock 30: 04.
  • All of the drivers were real class acts and did not consider us a bother.
  • But she didn't let this bother her at all and she proved to be a real class act.
a class apart
Much better than others of a similar kind: his songs were definitely a class apart
More example sentences
  • For Ricky Ponting's Australians were simply a class apart.
  • Imperious, elegant, unruffled, he was a class apart.
  • Among professional institutions, the new apex institutions are considered to be in a class apart.
in a class of its (or one's) own
Unequalled, especially in excellence or performance: British advertising is in a class of its own for inventiveness
More example sentences
  • For talent, performance, courage, survival and luck, both are in a class of their own.
  • This guy is in a class of his own, clearly taking pleasure in the performance as his fingers dance - blending blues, folk, rock and hillbilly fervour with a voice that echoes with conviction.
  • You are in a class of your own - don't let anyone knock you down!


Mid 16th century (in sense 3 of the noun): from Latin classis 'a division of the Roman people, a grade, or a class of pupils'.

Words that rhyme with class

brass, carse, coup de grâce, farce, glass, grass, Grasse, impasse, Kars, kick-ass, kvass, Laplace, Maas, Madras, outclass, pass, sparse, stained glass, surpass, upper class, volte-face
Definition of class in:
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