Pronunciation: (klas, kläs), [key]
1. a number of persons or things regarded as forming a group by reason of common attributes, characteristics, qualities, or traits; kind; sort: a class of objects used in daily living.
2. a group of students meeting regularly to study a subject under the guidance of a teacher: The class had arrived on time for the lecture.
3. the period during which a group of students meets for instruction.
4. a meeting of a group of students for instruction.
5. a classroom.
6. a number of pupils in a school, or of students in a college, pursuing the same studies, ranked together, or graduated in the same year: She graduated from Ohio State, class of '72.
7. a social stratum sharing basic economic, political, or cultural characteristics, and having the same social position: Artisans form a distinct class in some societies.
8. the system of dividing society; caste.
9. social rank, esp. high rank.
10. the members of a given group in society, regarded as a single entity.
11. any division of persons or things according to rank or grade: Hotels were listed by class, with the most luxurious ones listed first.
12. excellence; exceptional merit: She's a good performer, but she lacks class.
13. Hinduism.any of the four social divisions, the Brahman, Kshatriya, Vaisya, and Shudra, of Hindu society; varna. Cf. caste (def. 2).
14. Informal.elegance, grace, or dignity, as in dress and behavior: He may be a slob, but his brother has real class.
15. any of several grades of accommodations available on ships, airplanes, and the like: We bought tickets for first class.
16. Informal.the best or among the best of its kind: This new plane is the class of the wide-bodied airliners.
17. Biol.the usual major subdivision of a phylum or division in the classification of organisms, usually consisting of several orders.
18. Brit. Univ.any of three groups into which candidates for honors degrees are divided according to merit on the basis of final examinations.
19. drafted or conscripted soldiers, or persons available for draft or conscription, all of whom were born in the same year.
20. Gram.See form class.
22. (in early Methodism) one of several small companies, each composed of about 12 members under a leader, into which each society or congregation was divided.
23. Statistics.a group of measurements that fall within a specified interval.
24. Math.a set; a collection.
25. the classes,the higher ranks of society, as distinguished from the masses.
Informal.of high quality, integrity, status, or style: class players on a mediocre team.
to place or arrange in a class; classify: to class justice with wisdom.
1. to take or have a place in a particular class: those who class as believers.
2. class up, Informal.to improve the quality, tone, or status of; add elegance, dignity, style, etc., to: The new carpet and curtains really class up this room.
Random House Unabridged Dictionary, Copyright © 1997, by Random House, Inc., on Infoplease.