Definition of mense in US English:

mense

(also mens, mence, ments)

noun

Irish English, English Regional, Scottish, Northern
  • 1Propriety, decorum, kindness, tact; discretion, intelligence, common sense.

  • 2"to have both one's meat and mense" and variants: to have the credit of being considered generous (in regard to food, etc.) without the expense (as by giving an invitation which is not accepted). Similarly "to lose both one's meat and mense", etc.

  • 3English regional. Neatness, tidiness; newness, gloss.

noun

English Regional, Scottish, Northern
  • A large amount or quantity. Usually with of.

noun

South African
informal
  • Treated as plural. People; (frequently) specifically. Afrikaners. Often as a form of address.

Origin

Early 16th century; earliest use found in Thre Prestis of Peblis. Variant of mensk, with northern loss of -k from final -sk<br>mid 19th century; earliest use found in Richard Winter Hamilton (1794–1848), Congregational minister. Origin uncertain. Perhaps aphetic from immense, or perhaps a specifically sense of mense, showing a development of sense from ‘profuse hospitality, liberality’ to ‘a liberal amount, a great deal’<br>late 19th century. From Afrikaans mense, plural of mens person from Dutch † mensch.

Pronunciation

mense

/mɛns/