foolscap

[ foolz-kap ]
/ ˈfulzˌkæp /
|

noun

a type of inexpensive writing paper, especially legal-size, lined, yellow sheets, bound in tablet form.
Chiefly British. a size of drawing or printing paper, 13.5 × 17 inches (34 × 43 cm). Abbreviation: cap., fcp.
Also called foolscap octavo. a size of book, about 4.25 × 6.75 inches (11 × 17 cm), untrimmed.
Also called foolscap quarto. Chiefly British. a size of book, about 6.75 × 8.5 inches (17 × 22 cm) untrimmed.

Nearby words

  1. foolish,
  2. foolishly,
  3. foolproof,
  4. fools rush in where angels fear to tread,
  5. fools, feast of,
  6. foosball,
  7. foot,
  8. foot brake,
  9. foot doctor,
  10. foot drop

Origin of foolscap

First recorded in 1690–1700; so called from the watermark of a fool's cap formerly used on such paper

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for foolscap


British Dictionary definitions for foolscap

foolscap

/ (ˈfuːlzˌkæp) /

noun

mainly British a size of writing or printing paper, 13 1/2 by 17 inches or 13 1/4 by 16 1/2 inches
a book size, 4 1/4 by 6 3/4 inches (foolscap octavo) or (chiefly Brit) 6 3/4 by 8 1/2 inches (foolscap quarto)
a variant spelling of fool's cap

Word Origin for foolscap

C17: see fool 1, cap; so called from the watermark formerly used on this kind of paper

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 foolscap

foolscap

n.

literally "fool's cap; cap worn by jesters," 1630s; c.1700 as a type of paper, so called because this type of paper originally was watermarked with a court jester's cap.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper