multitude


Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Idioms, Wikipedia.

multitude

noun abundance, accumulation, amassment, army, array, assemblage, assembly, band, bevy, body, cluster, collection, conglomeration, covey, crowd, cumulation, drove, flock, force, herd, horde, host, legion, magnitude, mass, masses, multiplicity, numbers, numerosity, plurality, populace, profusion, quantity, scores, swarm, throng, troupe, volume
See also: assemblage, assembly, body, collection, conglomeration, congregation, mass, plurality, populace, quantity

MULTITUDE. The meaning of this word is not very certain. By some it is said that to make a multitude there must be ten persons at least, while others contend that the law has not fixed any number. Co. Litt. 257.

References in classic literature ?
Had a roar of laughter burst from the multitude -- each man, each woman, each little shrill-voiced child, contributing their individual parts -- Hester Prynne might have repaid them all with a bitter and disdainful smile.
In the family "keeping-room," as it is termed, he will remember the staid, respectable old book-case, with its glass doors, where Rollin's History,[1] Milton's Paradise Lost, Bunyan's Pilgrim's Progress, and Scott's Family Bible,[2] stand side by side in decorous order, with multitudes of other books, equally solemn and respectable.
The shouts of the multitude, together with the acclamations of the heralds, and the clangour of the trumpets, announced the triumph of the victors and the defeat of the vanquished.
How can there be any human understanding that can persuade itself there ever was all that infinity of Amadises in the world, or all that multitude of famous knights, all those emperors of Trebizond, all those Felixmartes of Hircania, all those palfreys, and damsels-errant, and serpents, and monsters, and giants, and marvellous adventures, and enchantments of every kind, and battles, and prodigious encounters, splendid costumes, love-sick princesses, squires made counts, droll dwarfs, love letters, billings and cooings, swashbuckler women, and, in a word, all that nonsense the books of chivalry contain?
In a democracy, where a multitude of people exercise in person the legislative functions, and are continually exposed, by their incapacity for regular deliberation and concerted measures, to the ambitious intrigues of their executive magistrates, tyranny may well be apprehended, on some favorable emergency, to start up in the same quarter.
The slumbering multitude became animated, the tambourines sounded, songs and cries arose; the hour of the sacrifice had come.
And as the day advanced and the engine drivers and stokers refused to return to London, the pressure of the flight drove the people in an ever-thickening multitude away from the stations and along the northward-running roads.
A multitude, by various avenues, assembled in King Street, which was destined to be the scene, nearly a century afterwards, of another encounter between the troops of Britain, and a people struggling against her tyranny.
In a little while, however, not only the first twelve had returned, but a multitude of other Quakers had come to rebuke the rulers and to preach against the priests and steeple-houses.
Some of his sunsets are like pageants devised for the delight of the multitude, when all the gems of the royal treasure-house are displayed above the sea.
IT was a sight that some people remembered better even than their own sorrows--the sight in that grey clear morning, when the fatal cart with the two young women in it was descried by the waiting watching multitude, cleaving its way towards the hideous symbol of a deliberately inflicted sudden death.
Scores of the savages were vigorously plying their stone pestles in preparing masses of poee-poee, and numbers were gathering green bread-fruit and young cocoanuts in the surrounding groves; when an exceeding great multitude, with a view of encouraging the rest in their labours, stood still, and kept shouting most lustily without intermission.