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article

[ahr-ti-kuh l]
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noun
  1. a written composition in prose, usually nonfiction, on a specific topic, forming an independent part of a book or other publication, as a newspaper or magazine.
  2. an individual object, member, or portion of a class; an item or particular: an article of food; articles of clothing.
  3. something of indefinite character or description: What is that article?
  4. an item for sale; commodity.
  5. Grammar. any member of a small class of words, or, as in Swedish or Romanian, affixes, found in certain languages, as English, French, and Arabic, that are linked to nouns and that typically have a grammatical function identifying the noun as a noun rather than describing it. In English the definite article is the, the indefinite article is a or an, and their force is generally to impart specificity to the noun or to single out the referent from the class named by the noun.
  6. a clause, item, point, or particular in a contract, treaty, or other formal agreement; a condition or stipulation in a contract or bargain: The lawyers disagreed on the article covering plagiarism suits.
  7. a separate clause or provision of a statute.
  8. Slang. a person.
  9. Archaic. a subject or matter of interest, thought, business, etc.
  10. Obsolete. a specific or critical point of time; juncture or moment: the article of death.
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verb (used with object), ar·ti·cled, ar·ti·cling.
  1. to set forth in articles; charge or accuse specifically: They articled his alleged crimes.
  2. to bind by articles of covenant or stipulation: to article an apprentice.
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Origin of article

1200–50; Middle English < Anglo-French, Medieval Latin articulus article of faith, Latin: joint, limb, member, clause, grammatical article, equivalent to arti- (combining form of artus joint; akin to arthro-, arm2) + -culus -cule1
Related formssub·ar·ti·cle, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for article

piece, essay, story, column, feature, item, paper, editorial, commentary, chapter, clause, detail, passage, provision, paragraph, substance, commodity, thing, thingamajig, unit

Examples from the Web for article

Contemporary Examples of article

Historical Examples of article

  • This set them to looking up some other article which might impart variety to their fare.

    Brave and Bold

    Horatio Alger

  • She simply lived by her wits, and perhaps by some want of that article in her male friends.

    Malbone

    Thomas Wentworth Higginson

  • Yet in the Protectionist dispensation, this has become an article of faith.

    'Tis Sixty Years Since

    Charles Francis Adams

  • So that they are advised with upon every article relating to us, or that may affect us.

    Clarissa, Volume 1 (of 9)

    Samuel Richardson

  • His ferret eyes searched the apartment; he seemed counting every article.


British Dictionary definitions for article

article

noun
  1. one of a class of objects; iteman article of clothing
  2. an unspecified or previously named thing, esp a small objecthe put the article on the table
  3. a distinct part of a subject or action
  4. a written composition on a subject, often being one of several found in a magazine, newspaper, etc
  5. grammar a kind of determiner, occurring in many languages including English, that lacks independent meaning but may serve to indicate the specificity of reference of the noun phrase with which it occursSee also definite article, indefinite article
  6. a clause or section in a written document such as a treaty, contract, statute, etc
  7. in articles formerly, undergoing training, according to the terms of a written contract, in the legal profession
  8. (often capital) Christianity See article of faith, Thirty-nine Articles
  9. archaic a topic or subject
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verb (tr)
  1. archaic to accuse
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Word Origin for article

C13: from Old French, from Latin articulus small joint, from artus joint
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

Word Origin and History for article

n.

c.1200, "separate parts of anything written" (e.g. the statements in the Apostles' Creed, the clauses of a statute or contract), from Old French article (13c.), from Latin articulus, diminutive of artus "a joint" (from PIE *ar-tu-, from *ar- "to fit together;" (see arm (n.1)).

Meaning extended to "a small division," then generalized to "item, thing." Older sense preserved in Articles of War "military regulations" (1716) and Articles of Confederation (U.S. history). Meaning "literary composition in a journal, etc." (independent, but part of a larger work) first recorded 1712. Meaning "piece of property" (clothing, etc.) first attested 1796, originally in rogue's cant.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper