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Learner's definition of MESS  
[count] : a very dirty or untidy state or condition— usually singular
   b [singular] : something or someone that looks very dirty or untidy
: a situation that is very complicated or difficult to deal with
   b : something that is not organized well or working correctly
informal [singular] 
: someone who is very unhappy, confused, etc.
   b US : someone who is showing a lot of emotion especially by crying
[count] : the place where people in the military eat
— called also mess hall
[singular]US, informal : a large amount of something— + of
informal : solid waste from an animal

make a mess of

: to ruin (something) or to make many mistakes in doing (something)
Learner's definition of MESS  

mess around

[phrasal verb]informalor Britishmess about
: to spend time doing things that are not useful or serious: to waste time
: to have sex with someone who is not your husband, wife, or regular partner— often + with
mess (someone) around/aboutBritish : to cause problems or trouble for (someone) especially by making changes that are not expected
mess around/about with (something) 
: to use or do (something) in a way that is not very serious
   b : to handle or play with (something) in a careless or foolish way

mess up

[phrasal verb]informal
: to make a mistake: to do something incorrectly— often + on
mess (something) up or mess up (something) 
: to make mistakes when you are doing or making (something)
   b : to make (something) dirty or untidy: to make a mess of (something)
   c : to damage or ruin (something): to damage or change (something) so that it does not work properly
mess (someone) up or mess up (someone) 
US : to beat and injure (someone)
   b : to make (someone) very upset and unhappy

mess with

[phrasal verb]informal
mess with (someone) : to cause trouble for (someone): to deal with (someone) in a way that may cause anger or violence
mess with (something) 
chiefly US : to deal with or be involved with (something that causes or that could cause trouble)
   b : to handle or play with (something) in a careless way: to mess around with (something)
◊ In very informal English, something that messes with your mind/head causes you to feel confused.
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