a written message addressed to a person or organization
"mailed an indignant letter to the editor"
letter, letter of the alphabet, alphabetic character(noun)
the conventional characters of the alphabet used to represent speech
"his grandmother taught him his letters"
owner who lets another person use something (housing usually) for hire
a strictly literal interpretation (as distinct from the intention)
"he followed instructions to the letter"; "he obeyed the letter of the law"
letter, varsity letter(verb)
an award earned by participation in a school sport
"he won letters in three sports"
win an athletic letter
set down or print with letters
mark letters on or mark with letters
A symbol in an alphabet, bookstave.
There are 26 letters in the English alphabet.
A written message. See also note.
I wrote a letter to my sister about my life.
"Some MEPs from some countries may have pocketed u00A32m more than I have by observing the letter but not the spirit of the rules." -
A size of paper, 8½ in × 11 in (215.9 mm × 279.4 mm, US paper sizes rounded to the nearest 5 mm)
A size of paper, 215 mm × 280 mm
to print, inscribe, or paint letters on something.
To earn a varsity letter (award).
One who lets, or lets out.
one who lets or permits; one who lets anything for hire
one who retards or hinders
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
a written or printed communication; a message expressed in intelligible characters on something adapted to conveyance, as paper, parchment, etc.; an epistle
a writing; an inscription
verbal expression; literal statement or meaning; exact signification or requirement
a single type; type, collectively; a style of type
learning; erudition; as, a man of letters
a letter; an epistle
to impress with letters; to mark with letters or words; as, a book gilt and lettered
Origin: [OE. lettre, F. lettre, OF. letre, fr. L. littera, litera, a letter; pl., an epistle, a writing, literature, fr. linere, litum, to besmear, to spread or rub over; because one of the earliest modes of writing was by graving the characters upon tablets smeared over or covered with wax. Pliny, xiii. 11. See Liniment, and cf. Literal.]
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.
Chambers 20th Century Dictionary
let′ėr, n. a conventional mark to express a sound: a written or printed message: literal meaning: a printing-type: (pl.) learning, literary culture.—v.t. to stamp letters upon.—ns. Lett′er-bal′ance, a balance for testing the weight of a letter for post; Lett′er-board (print.), board on which matter in type is placed for keeping or convenience in handling; Lett′er-book, a book in which letters or copies of letters are kept; Lett′er-box, a box in a post-office, at the door of a house, &c., for receiving letters; Lett′er-carr′ier, a postman; Lett′er-case, a portable writing-desk.—adj. Lett′ered, marked with letters: educated: versed in literature: belonging to learning (Lettered proof and Proof before letters; see Proof).—ns. Lett′erer; Lett′er-found′er, one who founds or casts letters or types; Lett′ering, the act of impressing letters: the letters impressed.—adj. Lett′erless, illiterate.—ns. Lett′er-miss′ive, an official letter on matters of common interest, sent to members of a church: a letter from the sovereign addressed to a dean and chapter, naming the person they are to elect bishop—also Royal letter; Lett′ern (same as Lectern); Lett′er-of-cred′it, a letter authorising credit or cash to a certain sum to be paid to the bearer; Lett′er-of-marque (märk), a commission given to a private ship by a government to make reprisals on the vessels of another state.—adj. Lett′er-per′fect, kept in the memory exactly (of an actor's part, &c.).—ns. Lett′erpress, letters impressed or matter printed from type, as distinguished from engraving: a copying-press; Lett′ers-pā′tent, a writing conferring a patent or authorising a person to enjoy some privilege, so called because written on open sheets of parchment; Lett′er-stamp, a post-office implement for defacing a postage-stamp: a stamp for imprinting dates, &c., on letters or papers; Lett′er-wood, the heart-wood of a tree found in British Guiana, dark brown, with darker spots somewhat resembling hieroglyphics; Lett′er-writ′er, one who writes letters, esp. for hire: a book containing forms for imitation in writing letters.—Letter of indication (see Circular); Letters of administration, a document issued by court appointing an administrator of an intestate estate; Letters requisitory, or rogatory, an instrument by which a court of one country asks that of another to take certain evidence on its behalf; Lettre de cachet (see Cachet). [Fr. lettre—L. littera.]
U.S. National Library of Medicine
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
Spoken Corpus Frequency
Rank popularity for the word 'letter' in Spoken Corpus Frequency: #761
Written Corpus Frequency
Rank popularity for the word 'letter' in Written Corpus Frequency: #643
Rank popularity for the word 'letter' in Nouns Frequency: #162
The numerical value of letter in Chaldean Numerology is: 5
The numerical value of letter in Pythagorean Numerology is: 8
Examples of letter in a Sentence
Popularity rank by frequency of use
Translations for letter
From our Multilingual Translation Dictionary
Get even more translations for letter »
Find a translation for the letter definition in other languages:
Select another language:
- - Select -
- 简体中文 (Chinese - Simplified)
- 繁體中文 (Chinese - Traditional)
- Español (Spanish)
- Esperanto (Esperanto)
- 日本語 (Japanese)
- Português (Portuguese)
- Deutsch (German)
- العربية (Arabic)
- Français (French)
- Русский (Russian)
- ಕನ್ನಡ (Kannada)
- 한국어 (Korean)
- עברית (Hebrew)
- Український (Ukrainian)
- اردو (Urdu)
- Magyar (Hungarian)
- मानक हिन्दी (Hindi)
- Indonesia (Indonesian)
- Italiano (Italian)
- தமிழ் (Tamil)
- Türkçe (Turkish)
- తెలుగు (Telugu)
- ภาษาไทย (Thai)
- Tiếng Việt (Vietnamese)
- Čeština (Czech)
- Polski (Polish)
- Bahasa Indonesia (Indonesian)
- Românește (Romanian)
- Nederlands (Dutch)
- Ελληνικά (Greek)
- Latinum (Latin)
- Svenska (Swedish)
- Dansk (Danish)
- Suomi (Finnish)
- فارسی (Persian)
- ייִדיש (Yiddish)
- հայերեն (Armenian)
- Norsk (Norwegian)
- English (English)