What does Essay mean?

Definitions for Essayˈɛs eɪ or, for 3,5 , ɛˈseɪ; ɛˈseɪ

Here are all the possible meanings and translations of the word Essay.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. essay(noun)

    an analytic or interpretive literary composition

  2. essay(verb)

    a tentative attempt

  3. try, seek, attempt, essay, assay(verb)

    make an effort or attempt

    "He tried to shake off his fears"; "The infant had essayed a few wobbly steps"; "The police attempted to stop the thief"; "He sought to improve himself"; "She always seeks to do good in the world"

  4. test, prove, try, try out, examine, essay(verb)

    put to the test, as for its quality, or give experimental use to

    "This approach has been tried with good results"; "Test this recipe"


  1. essay(Noun)

    A written composition of moderate length exploring a particular issue or subject.

  2. essay(Noun)

    A test, experiment; an assay.

  3. essay(Noun)

    An attempt.

  4. essay(Verb)

    To try.

  5. essay(Verb)

    To move forth, as into battle.

  6. Origin: From essai.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Essay(noun)

    an effort made, or exertion of body or mind, for the performance of anything; a trial; attempt; as, to make an essay to benefit a friend

  2. Essay(noun)

    a composition treating of any particular subject; -- usually shorter and less methodical than a formal, finished treatise; as, an essay on the life and writings of Homer; an essay on fossils, or on commerce

  3. Essay(noun)

    an assay. See Assay, n

  4. Essay(noun)

    to exert one's power or faculties upon; to make an effort to perform; to attempt; to endeavor; to make experiment or trial of; to try

  5. Essay(noun)

    to test the value and purity of (metals); to assay. See Assay

  6. Origin: [F. essayer. See Essay, n.]


  1. Essay

    An essay is a piece of writing which is often written from an author's personal point of view. Essays can consist of a number of elements, including: literary criticism, political manifestos, learned arguments, observations of daily life, recollections, and reflections of the author. The definition of an essay is vague, overlapping with those of an article and a short story. Almost all modern essays are written in prose, but works in verse have been dubbed essays. While brevity usually defines an essay, voluminous works like John Locke's An Essay Concerning Human Understanding and Thomas Malthus's An Essay on the Principle of Population are counterexamples. In some countries, essays have become a major part of formal education. Secondary students are taught structured essay formats to improve their writing skills, and admission essays are often used by universities in selecting applicants and, in the humanities and social sciences, as a way of assessing the performance of students during final exams. The concept of an "essay" has been extended to other mediums beyond writing. A film essay is a movie that often incorporates documentary film making styles and which focuses more on the evolution of a theme or an idea. A photographic essay is an attempt to cover a topic with a linked series of photographs; it may or may not have an accompanying text or captions.

Chambers 20th Century Dictionary

  1. Essay

    es′ā, n. a trial: an experiment: a written composition less elaborate than a treatise.—v.t. Essay′, to try: to attempt: to make experiment of:—pr.p. essay′ing; pa.p. essayed′.ns. Essay′er, Es′sayist, one who essays: a writer of essays; Essayette′, Es′saykin, a little essay.—adjs. Es′sayish; Essayis′tic. [O. Fr. essai—L. exagium, weighing—exagĕre, to try, examine.]

British National Corpus

  1. Written Corpus Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'Essay' in Written Corpus Frequency: #3685

  2. Nouns Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'Essay' in Nouns Frequency: #1621


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of Essay in Chaldean Numerology is: 4

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of Essay in Pythagorean Numerology is: 6

Sample Sentences & Example Usage

  1. Lee Drake:

    A bad grade is only one letter in the Essay of life.

  2. Samuel Johnson:

    ESSAY -- A loose sally of the mind an irregular indigested piece not a regular and orderly composition.

  3. Jim Wallace:

    It’s like having a college professor say, ‘I’m going to read your essay and if I don’t like it, I’m going to give it back to you,’.

  4. Camp Gyno ':

    Camp Gyno ''s clearly got a nickname for life. It'll probably be the beginning of Camp Gyno ' college essay as well, camp Gyno ''s embraced it, but Camp Gyno ''s moved on.

  5. Mao Zedong:

    Revolution is not a dinner party, not an essay, nor a painting, nor a piece of embroidery it cannot be advanced softly, gradually, carefully, considerately, respectfully, politely, plainly and modestly.

Images & Illustrations of Essay

  1. EssayEssayEssay

Translations for Essay

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"Essay." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2018. Web. 23 Mar. 2018. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/Essay>.

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