- literature in general.
- the profession of literature.
- learning; knowledge, especially of literature.
verb (used with object)
verb (used without object)
Origin of letter1
Synonyms for letter
noun Chiefly British.
Origin of letter2
Examples from the Web for letter
Contemporary Examples of letter
Your letter highlights so many of the harsh realities trans people face, specifically in regard to how society rejects us.Dear Leelah, We Will Fight On For You: A Letter to a Dead Trans Teen
January 1, 2015
Copies of the letter were sent to senior members of the church hierarchy and to the Soviet government.Remembering the Russian Priest Who Fought the Orthodox Church
December 28, 2014
So, feeling “a little loopy” from beers, he sat down and wrote a letter to Santa Claus.Kerry Bentivolio: The Congressman Who Believes in Santa Claus
December 24, 2014
I have never gotten one letter in my office about one of those.A Field General in the War on Christmas
December 24, 2014
And from there, the letter asked for money for a legal defense fund.The Monsters Who Screamed for Dead Cops
December 23, 2014
Historical Examples of letter
Was his father still alive, or was this letter a communication from the dead?
He handed the letter to Robert, who surveyed it with curiosity.
The feelings with which Robert read and his mother listened to this letter, were varied.
I have seen the letter; it is in Captain Rushton's handwriting.
Did you notice you could read every letter in the label on that ham?The Spenders
Harry Leon Wilson
- following the literal interpretation or wording exactly
- attending to every detail
Word Origin for letter
c.1200, "graphic symbol, alphabetic sign, written character," from Old French letre (10c., Modern French lettre) "character, letter; missive, note," in plural, "literature, writing, learning," from Latin littera (also litera) "letter of the alphabet," of uncertain origin, perhaps via Etruscan from Greek diphthera "tablet," with change of d- to l- as in lachrymose. In this sense it replaced Old English bocstæf, literally "book staff" (cf. German Buchstabe "letter, character," from Old High German buohstab, from Proto-Germanic *bok-staba-m).
Latin littera also meant "a writing, document, record," and in plural litteræ "a letter, epistle," a sense first attested in English early 13c., replacing Old English ærendgewrit, literally "errand-writing." The Latin plural also meant "literature, books," and figuratively "learning, liberal education, schooling" (see letters). School letter in sports, attested by 1908, were said to have been first awarded by University of Chicago football coach Amos Alonzo Stagg. Expression to the letter "precisely" is from 1520s (earlier as after the letter). Letter-perfect is from 1845, originally in theater jargon, in reference to an actor knowing the lines exactly. Letter-press, in reference to matter printed from relief surfaces, is from 1840.
"one who lets" in any sense, c.1400, agent noun from let (v.).
In addition to the idiom beginning with letter
- letter of the law
- bread and butter letter
- crank call (letter)
- dead letter
- four-letter word
- poison-pen letter
- red-letter day
- to the letter