Etymology
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mat (n.1)

"an article plaited or woven of more or less coarse natural materials (rushes, straw, twine, etc.) used as bedding, floor-coverings, etc.," Old English matte, from Late Latin matta "mat made of rushes" (4c.), probably from Punic or Phoenician matta (compare Hebrew mittah "bed, couch").

Meaning "tangled mass; anything closely set, dense, and thick" is from 1835. Meaning "thin, flat article to be placed under a dish, plate, etc. to protect the table" is by 1800. That of "piece of padded flooring used in gymnastics or wrestling" is attested from 1892; hence figurative phrase go to the mat "do battle" (1910). The Latin word also is the source of German Matte, matze; Dutch mat, Italian matta. French natte "mat, matting" is from Late Latin secondary form natta (compare napkin).

mat (adj.)

1640s, "lusterless, dull" (of a color or surface), from French mat "dull, dead surface," from Old French mat "beaten down, withered, afflicted, dejected; dull," which is perhaps from Latin mattus "maudlin with drink," from madere "to be wet or sodden, be drunk," from PIE root *mad- "to be wet, drip" (see mast (n.2)). Or the French word might represent a transferred use from chess of mater "to checkmate, defeat," from Arabic (see mate (v.2)).

mat (n.2)

"sheet of backing material," 1845, from French mat "dull surface or finish" (15c.), noun use of Old French mat (adj.) "dull, beaten down," for which see mat (adj.). The word has been confused with mat (n.1), especially as the latter was used late 19c. for "piece of thick paper or other material placed for ornament or protection immediately under the glass of a picture-frame, with the central part cut out, for the proper display of the picture." As a verb, "to mount (a print) on a cardboard backing," by 1965. Related: Matted; matting.

mat (v.)

early 15c., matten, "to make mats," from mat (n.1). From 1540s as "to provide with mats, to cover with mats;" meaning "to become tangled" is from 1570s. Related: Matted; matting.

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Definitions of mat
1
mat (n.)
a thick flat pad used as a floor covering;
mat (n.)
mounting consisting of a border or background for a picture;
Synonyms: matting
mat (n.)
sports equipment consisting of a piece of thick padding on the floor for gymnastic sports;
Synonyms: gym mat
mat (n.)
a mass that is densely tangled or interwoven;
a mat of weeds and grass
mat (n.)
a master's degree in teaching;
Synonyms: Master of Arts in Teaching
mat (n.)
the property of having little or no contrast; lacking highlights or gloss;
Synonyms: flatness / lusterlessness / lustrelessness / matt / matte
mat (n.)
a foundation (usually on soft ground) consisting of an extended layer of reinforced concrete;
Synonyms: raft foundation / raft
mat (n.)
a small pad of material that is used to protect surface from an object placed on it;
2
mat (v.)
twist together or entwine into a confusing mass;
Synonyms: entangle / tangle / snarl
mat (v.)
change texture so as to become matted and felt-like;
Synonyms: felt / felt up / mat up / matt-up / matte up / matte
3
mat (adj.)
not reflecting light; not glossy;
Synonyms: flat / matt / matte / matted
From wordnet.princeton.edu