Definition of mattress in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈmatrɪs/


1A fabric case filled with soft, firm, or springy material, used for sleeping on.
Example sentences
  • His pillow was extremely soft, and the flannel sheets and firm mattresses were almost too comfortable.
  • The boys sleep on mattresses and their days are filled with school classes, sport and counselling.
  • These little critters are found in mattresses, carpets, soft furniture and bedding.
2 Engineering A flat structure of concrete, brushwood, or other material, used as strengthening or support for foundations, embankments, etc.


Middle English: via Old French and Italian from Arabic maṭraḥ 'carpet or cushion', from ṭaraḥa 'to throw'.

  • The word mattress came via Old French and Italian from Arabic matrah ‘carpet or cushion’, from taraha ‘to throw’.

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