Definitions for letterˈlɛt ər

This page provides all possible meanings and translations of the word letter

Random House Webster's College Dictionary

let•terˈlɛt ər(n.)

  1. a written or printed communication addressed to a person or organization and usu. transmitted by mail.

  2. a symbol or character that is conventionally used in writing and printing to represent a speech sound and is part of an alphabet.

  3. a piece of printing type bearing such a symbol or character.

    Category: Printing

  4. a particular style of type.

    Category: Printing

  5. Often, letters. a formal document granting a right or privilege.

  6. actual terms or wording; literal meaning, as distinct from implied meaning or intent

    the letter of the law.

    Ref: (opposed to spirit )

  7. letters, (used with a sing. or pl. v.) literature in general. the profession of literature. learning; knowledge, esp. of literature.

    Category: Literature

  8. an emblem consisting of the initial or monogram of a school, awarded to a student for accomplishment, esp. in athletics.

  9. (v.t.)to mark or write with letters; inscribe.

  10. (v.i.)to earn a letter in a school activity, esp. a sport.

Idioms for letter:

  1. to the letter,to the last particular; precisely.

    Category: Idiom

Origin of letter:

1175–1225; ME, var. of lettre < OF < L littera alphabetic character, in pl., epistle, literature


Princeton's WordNet

  1. letter, missive(noun)

    a written message addressed to a person or organization

    "mailed an indignant letter to the editor"

  2. letter, letter of the alphabet, alphabetic character(noun)

    the conventional characters of the alphabet used to represent speech

    "his grandmother taught him his letters"

  3. letter(noun)

    owner who lets another person use something (housing usually) for hire

  4. letter(noun)

    a strictly literal interpretation (as distinct from the intention)

    "he followed instructions to the letter"; "he obeyed the letter of the law"

  5. letter, varsity letter(verb)

    an award earned by participation in a school sport

    "he won letters in three sports"

  6. letter(verb)

    win an athletic letter

  7. letter(verb)

    set down or print with letters

  8. letter(verb)

    mark letters on or mark with letters

Kernerman English Learner's Dictionary

  1. letter(noun)ˈɛtɚ

    a message you write and send to sb

    My father wrote/sent me a letter.; a letter from her aunt; to mail a letter

  2. letterˈɛtɚ

    one of the written symbols representing the sounds in speech

    the letter 'A'; He wrote "NO" in capital letters.

  3. letterˈɛtɚ


    He followed my orders to the letter.


  1. letter(Noun)

    A symbol in an alphabet, bookstave.

    There are 26 letters in the English alphabet.

  2. letter(Noun)

    A written message. See also note.

    I wrote a letter to my sister about my life.

  3. letter

    Literal meaning.

    "Some MEPs from some countries may have pocketed u00A32m more than I have by observing the letter but not the spirit of the rules." -

  4. letter

    A size of paper, 8u00BD in u00D7 11 in (215.9 mm u00D7 279.4 mm, US paper sizes rounded to the nearest 5 mm)

  5. letter

    A size of paper, 215 mm u00D7 280 mm

  6. letter(Verb)

    to print, inscribe, or paint letters on something.

  7. letter(Verb)

    To earn a varsity letter (award).

  8. letter(Noun)

    One who lets, or lets out.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Letter(noun)

    one who lets or permits; one who lets anything for hire

  2. Letter(noun)

    one who retards or hinders

  3. Letter(noun)

    a mark or character used as the representative of a sound, or of an articulation of the human organs of speech; a first element of written language

  4. Letter(noun)

    a written or printed communication; a message expressed in intelligible characters on something adapted to conveyance, as paper, parchment, etc.; an epistle

  5. Letter(noun)

    a writing; an inscription

  6. Letter(noun)

    verbal expression; literal statement or meaning; exact signification or requirement

  7. Letter(noun)

    a single type; type, collectively; a style of type

  8. Letter(noun)

    learning; erudition; as, a man of letters

  9. Letter(noun)

    a letter; an epistle

  10. Letter(verb)

    to impress with letters; to mark with letters or words; as, a book gilt and lettered


  1. Letter

    A letter is a written message containing information from one party to another. The role of letters in communication has changed significantly since the nineteenth century. Historically, letters were the only reliable means of communication between two people in different locations. As communication technology has diversified, posted letters have become less important as a routine form of communication. For example, the development of the telegraph shortened the time taken to send a letter by transferring the letter as an electrical signal between distant points. At the telegraph office closest to the destination of the letter, the signal was transferred back into a hardcopy format and sent as a normal mail to the person's home. This allowed the normal speed of communication to be drastically shortened for large distances. The facsimile machine took this one step further: an entire letter could be completely transferred electrically from the sender's house to the receiver's house by means of the telephone network as an image. Today, the internet by means of email plays a large part in written communications. Historically, letters exist from the time of ancient India, ancient Egypt and Sumer, through Rome, Greece and China, up to the present day. Letters make up several of the books of the Bible. Archives of correspondence, whether for personal, diplomatic, or business reasons, serve as primary sources for historians.

U.S. National Library of Medicine

  1. Letter

    Work consisting of written or printed communication between individuals or between persons and representatives of corporate bodies. The correspondence may be personal or professional. In medical and other scientific publications the letter is usually from one or more authors to the editor of the journal or book publishing the item being commented upon or discussed. LETTER is often accompanied by COMMENT.

British National Corpus

  1. Spoken Corpus Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'letter' in Spoken Corpus Frequency: #761

  2. Written Corpus Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'letter' in Written Corpus Frequency: #643

  3. Nouns Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'letter' in Nouns Frequency: #162

Translations for letter

Kernerman English Multilingual Dictionary


a mark expressing a sound

the letters of the alphabet.

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