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Line breaks: gross
Pronunciation: /ɡrəʊs

Definition of gross in English:


1Unattractively fat or bloated: I feel fat, gross—even my legs feel flabby
More example sentences
  • At least a third of the people promenading along the seafront were more than just overweight - they were gross, with their swollen bellies leading the way.
obese, corpulent, overweight, fat, big, large, outsize, outsized, massive, immense, huge, colossal, fleshy, flabby, portly, bloated, bulky, lumpish
British informal podgy, fubsy
North American vulgar slang lard-assed
1.1 informal Very unpleasant; repulsive: ‘Then I threw up,’ said Russ. ‘How gross,’ Ellie muttered
More example sentences
  • Whilst we gained a sense of Caliban's non-humanness, we lost much sense of him as a gross, repulsive creature.
  • So, to all you spitters out there: it's gross, disgusting, unhealthy and classless, and every time you do it you look like a trashy hood rat.
  • Spiders are fundamentally gross and yucky creatures and any messing with their place in the scheme of things will produce something grosser and yuckier still.
2Very rude or coarse; vulgar: a gross, slap-and-tickle version of ‘The Taming of the Shrew’
More example sentences
  • Guess which activity used to be sorely frowned upon by the upper echelons, scorned by the elite, and ridiculed by the meritocracy as a gross, vulgar pastime for the ill-bred?
North American informal gamy
euphemistic adult
boorish, loutish, oafish, thuggish, brutish, bearish, Neanderthal, philistine, coarse, uncouth, unsavoury, crass, vulgar, common, unrefined, unsophisticated, uncultured, uncultivated, undiscriminating, tasteless, insensitive, unfeeling, imperceptive, callous
British informal yobbish
Australian/New Zealand informal ocker
3(Especially of wrongdoing) very obvious and unacceptable: gross human rights abuses
More example sentences
  • The indignation is compounded by evidence of gross corruption.
  • The apathy, lack of understanding and political will and gross corruption in the government enhances the scope of the industry to continue with impunity.
  • Even if we forget about principle and adopt a pragmatic stance, there is little to be gained in appeasing gross violence by the powerful.
flagrant, blatant, glaring, obvious, overt, evident, conspicuous;
naked, barefaced, shameless, brazen, audacious, brass-necked;
out and out, utter, complete;
outrageous, scandalous, shocking, disgraceful, reprehensible, dreadful, terrible;
enormous, heinous, atrocious, monstrous, wicked, iniquitous, villainous
archaic arrant
4(Of income, profit, or interest) without deduction of tax or other contributions; total: the gross amount of the gift was £1,000 Often contrasted with net2 (sense 1) of the adjective).
More example sentences
  • A non-resident is taxed in Spain on income arising from Spanish property at the rate of 25 per cent on gross income without any deductions for expenses or interest costs.
  • For self-employed applicants, the Department of Education wants to see a full declaration of total gross income.
  • Figures for income, gross profit, salaries, motor expenses, drawings etc are fed into the Revenue computer system.
total, whole, entire, complete, full, overall, comprehensive, aggregate;
before deductions, before tax
4.1(Of weight) including contents, wrappings, or other variable items; overall: a projected gross take-off weight of 500,000 pounds
More example sentences
  • This would have permitted much more flexibility in basing since the B-52 is limited by its heavy gross weight and long takeoff ground roll.
  • My body definitely wouldn't handle 7.5 Gs if I didn't adjust my gross weight before takeoff.
  • This whole thing will be run like a classic flight test program of expanding the envelope, but we will always take off at full gross weight.
4.2(Of a score in golf) as actually played, without taking handicap into account.
Example sentences
  • She broke the ladies' course record, on the Kirkwall golf course, on Tuesday evening, with a gross score of 68.
  • A gross score of 66 less their team handicap of 6 produced a net 60.
  • Those scores were gross scores off his newly lowered 27 handicap!
5General or large-scale; not detailed: at the gross anatomical level
More example sentences
  • Primary homology hypotheses were generated for features of gross morphology, leaf anatomy, and chromosome number.
  • Generally, gross lesions are not observed in the central nervous system of birds affected with Newcastle disease virus regardless of the pathotype.
  • In summary, this is an excellent book with extremely useful text, superb gross pictures, and generally very good microscopic pictures.


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Without tax or other contributions having been deducted: if the value of your Bond is £50,000 or more the interest will be paid gross
More example sentences
  • Overall they estimate that carers save the State at least E2 billion gross each year.


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1Produce or earn (an amount of money) as gross profit or income: the film went on to gross $8 million
More example sentences
  • The oversized celebrity has been in 30 films since 1970, grossing hundreds of millions of dollars.
  • He also informed delegates that the qualifiers had grossed a million less than in the previous year because of falling attendances.
  • When's the last time you hear about a poet's latest world tour grossing a million a night?
informal rake in, pull in, haul in, bag
1.1 (gross something up) Add deductions such as tax to a net amount: all commuting costs were grossed up for tax and National Insurance deductions
More example sentences
  • I am, however, prepared to ‘add back’ a number of the items that are considered to be personal to the Respondent that are written off as business expenses and grossing that amount up.
  • Even if the child is not a taxpayer, contributions are grossed up by the Inland Revenue to a £3,600 limit, which means that the contributor has to provide just £2,808, with the taxman contributing a further £792.
  • The maximum you can contribute in a year is £2,808, to which the taxman adds relief, grossing it up up to £3,600.


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1 (plural same) An amount equal to twelve dozen; 144: fifty-five gross of tins of processed milk
[from French grosse douzaine, literally 'large dozen']
More example sentences
  • That's like giving a kid a gross of bottle rockets and a new Bic lighter, then leaving the boy unsupervised - and being shocked, shocked to hear small explosions in the distance.
  • Personally, I'm wondering just how much he paid for the gross of grovelling apologies he's been using like there's no tomorrow…
  • It seems county council might benefit if something suitably heavy (a gross of copies of Chicken Little?) were bounced off the thick heads of its members.
2 (plural grosses) A gross profit or income: the box office grosses mounted
More example sentences
  • Chaplin had big box-office grosses, but he made relatively few pictures.
  • The overall box office grosses for the summer season, which ends today, on Labor Day, is just slightly ahead of last summer's record pace.
  • This is normally a sign that audiences like a film and the film's grosses are going to hold up well in subsequent weeks, so the film's final gross could still be quite good.


Middle English (in the sense 'thick, massive, bulky'): from Old French gros, grosse 'large', from late Latin grossus.


by the gross

In large numbers or amounts: on D-Day men drowned by the gross
More example sentences
  • Before you start buying chicken breasts by the gross, here are a few things to consider about eating extra protein.
  • Still, unrequited love is on sale cheap, by the gross.
  • In 1982 I dare say I bought packets of chemical slug pellets by the gross.

Phrasal verbs

gross someone out

North American informal Disgust someone: he used to eat worms to gross her out
More example sentences
  • However, he shot me a disgusted look, as if he was grossed out or something.
  • He told me he was grossed out by my chocolate maggot story.
  • Eh, if I didn't know those two were only best friends, I would be grossed out.
disgust, revolt, repel, repulse, sicken, nauseate, cause to feel nauseous, make shudder, turn someone's stomach, make someone's gorge rise;
be repugnant to, be repulsive to, be distasteful to
informal turn off, make someone want to throw up



[as submodifier]: Freda was grossly overweight
More example sentences
  • Obese to a lay person would be someone who is seen to be grossly overweight.
  • Six pigs had skin problems and all the other cases had problems ranging from pneumonia to being grossly overweight.
  • Unfortunately, he seems to have cooked the books, and therefore its value was grossly inflated.


Example sentences
  • Crass suggests a grossness of mind precluding discrimination or delicacy.
  • I realize, of course, that I should not have been competing in adult company so long as I failed to appreciate the grossness of these improprieties.
  • We live in a world soiled by the grossness and wickedness and filth of sin.

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