- literature in general.
- the profession of literature.
- learning; knowledge, especially of literature.
verb (used with object)
verb (used without object)
- letter bomb,
- letter box,
- letter card,
- letter carrier,
- letter drop
Origin of letter1
noun Chiefly British.
Origin of letter2
Examples from the Web for 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|Parker Molloy|January 1, 2015|DAILY BEAST
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|Cathy Young|December 28, 2014|DAILY BEAST
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|Ben Jacobs|December 24, 2014|DAILY BEAST
I have never gotten one letter in my office about one of those.
And from there, the letter asked for money for a legal defense fund.
This part of this letter was written, as Johnson goes on to say, a considerable time before the conclusion.Life Of Johnson, Volume 4 (of 6)|Boswell
The impressions of one of his most intimate friends, as conveyed at the time by letter, may fitly be quoted here.
About the time at which I suppose this letter to have been written there is, in fact, a payment of 40 to J.L.Great Ghost Stories|Various
Here is his letter, and I hope you will tell me candidly what you think.The Perpetual Curate|Mrs [Margaret] Oliphant
But the letter was, as you may imagine, written so that the writer should come to no harm were it intercepted.Barry Lyndon|William Makepeace Thackeray
- 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