Try Our Apps


Challenge: Tongue Twisters


[tekst] /tɛkst/
the main body of matter in a manuscript, book, newspaper, etc., as distinguished from notes, appendixes, headings, illustrations, etc.
the original words of an author or speaker, as opposed to a translation, paraphrase, commentary, or the like:
The newspaper published the whole text of the speech.
the actual wording of anything written or printed:
You have not kept to the text of my remarks.
any of the various forms in which a writing exists:
The text is a medieval transcription.
the wording adopted by an editor as representing the original words of an author:
the authoritative text of Catullus.
any theme or topic; subject.
the words of a song or the like.
a textbook.
a short passage of Scripture, especially one chosen in proof of a doctrine or as the subject of a sermon: The text he chose was the Sermon on the Mount.
the letter of the Holy Scripture, or the Scriptures themselves.
  1. black letter.
  2. type, as distinguished from illustrations, margins, etc.
Linguistics. a unit of connected speech or writing, especially composed of more than one sentence, that forms a cohesive whole.
anything considered to be a subject for analysis by or as if by methods of literary criticism.
Digital Technology. a text message.
verb (used without object), Digital Technology.
to send a text message:
Texting while driving is an accident asking to happen.
verb (used with object), Digital Technology.
to send a text message about or containing:
He texted a long wish list to his parents two days before his eighteenth birthday.
Compare instant message (def 2).
to send a text message to:
The only way I can ever reach her is to text her.
Origin of text
1300-50; Middle English < Medieval Latin textus text, terms, Latin: text, structure, orig., pattern of weaving, texture (of cloth), equivalent to tex(ere) to weave + -tus suffix of v. action
Related forms
textless, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
Cite This Source
Examples from the Web for text
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
British Dictionary definitions for text


the main body of a printed or written work as distinct from commentary, notes, illustrations, etc
the words of something printed or written
(often pl) a book prescribed as part of a course of study
(computing) the words printed, written, or displayed on a visual display unit
the original exact wording of a work, esp the Bible, as distinct from a revision or translation
a short passage of the Bible used as a starting point for a sermon or adduced as proof of a doctrine
the topic or subject of a discussion or work
(printing) any one of several styles of letters or types
short for textbook
short for text message
to send a text message from a mobile phone
Derived Forms
textless, adjective
Word Origin
C14: from Medieval Latin textus version, from Latin textus texture, from texere to compose
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for text

late 14c., "wording of anything written," from Old French texte, Old North French tixte (12c.), from Medieval Latin textus "the Scriptures, text, treatise," in Late Latin "written account, content, characters used in a document," from Latin textus "style or texture of a work," literally "thing woven," from past participle stem of texere "to weave," from PIE root *tek- "to weave, to fabricate, to make; make wicker or wattle framework" (see texture).

An ancient metaphor: thought is a thread, and the raconteur is a spinner of yarns -- but the true storyteller, the poet, is a weaver. The scribes made this old and audible abstraction into a new and visible fact. After long practice, their work took on such an even, flexible texture that they called the written page a textus, which means cloth. [Robert Bringhurst, "The Elements of Typographic Style"]


"to send a text message by mobile system," 2005; see text (n.). Related: Texted; texting. It formerly was a verb meaning "to write in text letters" (1590s).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
text in Technology

1. Executable code, especially a "pure code" portion shared between multiple instances of a program running in a multitasking operating system.
Compare English.
2. Textual material in the mainstream sense; data in ordinary ASCII or EBCDIC representation (see flat ASCII). "Those are text files; you can review them using the editor."
These two contradictory senses confuse hackers too.
[Jargon File]

The Free On-line Dictionary of Computing, © Denis Howe 2010
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for text

All English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for text

Scrabble Words With Friends

Nearby words for text