Definitions for: Letter


[n] a written message addressed to a person or organization; "mailed an indignant letter to the editor"
[n] an award earned by participation in a school sport; "he won letters in three sports"
[n]
[n] a strictly literal interpretation (as distinct from the intention); "he followed instructions to the letter"; "he obeyed the letter of the law"
[n] owner who lets another person use something (housing usually) for hire
[v] mark letters on or mark with letters
[v] set down or print with letters
[v] win an athletic letter, in sports



Webster (1913) Definition: Let"ter (l[e^]t"t[~e]r), n. [From Let to permit.]
One who lets or permits; one who lets anything for hire.


Let"ter, n. [From Let to hinder.]
One who retards or hinders. [Archaic.]


Let"ter, n. [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.]
1. 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.

And a superscription also was written over him in
letters of Greek, and Latin, and Hebrew. --Luke
xxiii. 38.

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

The style of letters ought to be free, easy, and
natural. --Walsh.

3. A writing; an inscription. [Obs.]

None could expound what this letter meant.
--Chaucer.

4. Verbal expression; literal statement or meaning; exact
signification or requirement.

We must observe the letter of the law, without doing
violence to the reason of the law and the intention
of the lawgiver. --Jer. Taylor.

I broke the letter of it to keep the sense.
--Tennyson.

5. (Print.) A single type; type, collectively; a style of
type.

Under these buildings . . . was the king's printing
house, and that famous letter so much esteemed.
--Evelyn.

6. pl. Learning; erudition; as, a man of letters.

7. pl. A letter; an epistle. [Obs.] --Chaucer.

Dead letter, Drop letter, etc. See under Dead, Drop,
etc.

Letter book, a book in which copies of letters are kept.

Letter box, a box for the reception of letters to be mailed
or delivered.

Letter carrier, a person who carries letters; a postman;
specif., an officer of the post office who carries letters
to the persons to whom they are addressed, and collects
letters to be mailed.

Letter cutter, one who engraves letters or letter punches.


Letter lock, a lock that can not be opened when fastened,
unless certain movable lettered rings or disks forming a
part of it are in such a position (indicated by a
particular combination of the letters) as to permit the
bolt to be withdrawn.

A strange lock that opens with AMEN. --Beau. & Fl.

Letter paper, paper for writing letters on; especially, a
size of paper intermediate between note paper and
foolscap. See Paper.

Letter punch, a steel punch with a letter engraved on the
end, used in making the matrices for type.

Letters of administration (Law), the instrument by which an
administrator or administratrix is authorized to
administer the goods and estate of a deceased person.

Letter of attorney, Letter of credit, etc. See under
Attorney, Credit, etc.

Letter of license, a paper by which creditors extend a
debtor's time for paying his debts.

Letters close or clause (Eng. Law.), letters or writs
directed to particular persons for particular purposes,
and hence closed or sealed on the outside; --
distinguished from letters patent. --Burrill.

Letters of orders (Eccl.), a document duly signed and
sealed, by which a bishop makes it known that he has
regularly ordained a certain person as priest, deacon,
etc.

Letters patent, overt, or open (Eng. Law), a writing
executed and sealed, by which power and authority are
granted to a person to do some act, or enjoy some right;
as, letters patent under the seal of England.

Letter-sheet envelope, a stamped sheet of letter paper
issued by the government, prepared to be folded and sealed
for transmission by mail without an envelope.

Letters testamentary (Law), an instrument granted by the
proper officer to an executor after probate of a will,
authorizing him to act as executor.

Letter writer.
(a) One who writes letters.
(b) A machine for copying letters.
(c) A book giving directions and forms for the writing of
letters.


Let"ter (l[e^]t"t[~e]r), v. t. [imp. & p. p. Lettered
(-t[~e]rd); p. pr. & vb. n. Lettering.]
To impress with letters; to mark with letters or words; as, a
book gilt and lettered.


Let"ter, n. (Teleg.)
A telegram longer than an ordinary message sent at rates
lower than the standard message rate in consideration of its
being sent and delivered subject to priority in service of
regular messages. Such telegrams are called by the Western
Union Company day, or night, letters according to the time
of sending, and by The Postal Telegraph Company {day, or
night, lettergrams}.

Synonyms: alphabetic character, letter of the alphabet, missive, varsity letter

See Also: A, accolade, address, aerogram, aerogramme, air letter, airmail letter, alpha, alphabet, ascender, award, B, beta, business letter, C, chain letter, character, correspondence, cover letter, covering letter, crank letter, D, dead letter, delta, descender, destination, digraph, document, E, earn, encyclical, encyclical letter, epistle, epsilon, eta, F, form letter, G, gamma, garner, grapheme, graphic symbol, H, honor, honour, I, impress, initial, invitation, iota, J, K, kappa, L, lambda, laurels, letter of intent, literal interpretation, M, mail, mu, N, name and address, nu, O, omicron, open letter, owner, P, pastoral, personal letter, pi, postscript, print, proprietor, PS, Q, R, rho, round robin, S, sigma, spelling, T, tau, text, textual matter, theta, U, V, W, write, X, xi, Y, Z, zed, zee, zeta

Related Words for Scrabble or Words With Friends:





Famous Quotes Containing Letter:


Once in a while you start having second thoughts, then you read a letter from someone that lifts your spirits so much - it really makes a huge difference. I love reading them.

-- Corbin Bleu (American Actor)

A fan sent me a letter and a $10 bill. It's a short letter - all she said was, "Hey, since it's harder for you to go out these days without getting photographed, here $10 for a pizza." I was like, "Aww, she sent me money for a pizza so I could eat at home!"

-- Zac Efron (American Actor)

Personal beauty is a greater recommendation than any letter of reference.

-- Aristotle (Greek Philosopher)

A Minor is one of my all-time favorite keys to play in. It's a very moody key, and also 'A' is the first letter of my name. It just represents the songs through my eyes.

-- Alicia Keys (American Musician)

A prose writer gets tired of writing prose, and wants to be a poet. So he begins every line with a capital letter, and keeps on writing prose.

-- Samuel McChord Crothers ( -)

I have made this letter longer than usual, only because I have not had the time to make it shorter.

-- Blaise Pascal (French Philosopher)

I love things made out of animals. It's just so funny to think of someone saying, 'I need a letter opener. I guess I'll have to kill a deer.

-- David Sedaris (American Writer)

There are many members of parliament present here who know as well as I do that, if a man has not already been converted, it will require a great deal more than a letter of appeal to achieve conversion.

-- Fredrik Bajer (Danish Writer)

Honest honey, I feel like crying every time I sit down to write you a letter... I am so unlucky.

-- Eddie Slovik (American Soldier)

All the plots of hell and commotions on earth have not so much as shaken God's hand to spoil one letter or line he has been drawing.

-- William Gurnall (English Author)

Sure, women sportswriters look when they're in the clubhouse. Read their stories. How else do you explain a capital letter in the middle of a word?

-- Bob Uecker (American Athlete)

Journalism's ultimate purpose is to inform the reader, to bring him each day a letter from home and never to permit the serving of special interests.

-- Arthur Ochs Sulzberger (American Publisher)

She kindly laments that I am not of the party, and to be sure I honour great ladies, and I admire great wits, but I am of the same opinion in regard to assemblies that is held concerning oysters, that they are never good in a month that has not the letter R in it.

-- Elizabeth Montagu (British Writer)

I was talking to my spiritual advisor. I got a letter from somebody who said that they were about to kill themselves, but they listened to a song of mine and it saved their lives.

-- David Friedman ( Actor)

To find out your real opinion of someone, judge the impression you have when you first see a letter from them.

-- Arthur Schopenhauer (German Philosopher)

My friends all regarded me as a man of unsound mind because I held the view that my wife was with me in spirit always. I have lived with her spirit guiding me every day and she is with me now as I write this letter, and helps me to do as I am now doing.

-- Alex Campbell (Canadian Politician)

I got one letter at the very beginning, like, in the first season, saying - from a woman who was very religious, very Christian, saying how wrong she thought the show was, but she thinks it's the funniest show on television.

-- Sean Hayes (American Actor)

Make no mistake about it: once a band has signed a letter of intent, they will either eventually sign a contract that suits the label or they will be destroyed.

-- Steve Albini (American Musician)

I began in an era where four-letter words were not allowed.

-- Pat Morita (Japanese Actor)

Well, I'm not going to go into what the letter says, because the police are looking at that. But as you say it's in Bahasa. But of course that's not to suggest that the letter came from outside of Australia. It came from in Australia. It came from Victoria.

-- Alexander Downer (Australian Politician)

To send a letter is a good way to go somewhere without moving anything but your heart.

-- Phyllis Theroux ( -)

Out of five hundred who speak glibly of love, not one can spell the first letter of his name.

-- Marie de France (French Poet)

I got a chain letter by fax. It's very simple. You just fax a dollar bill to everybody on the list.

-- Steven Wright (American Comedian)

We cannot afford to have any large section of the business world in doubt whether they have broken the laws or not, and we cannot let the laws become a dead letter through vagueness. In this view it is clear that an administrative commission can render invaluable service.

-- John Bates Clark (American Economist)

The red-letter days, now become, to all intents and purposes, dead-letter days.

-- Charles Lamb (English Critic)

I was dating this guy and we would spend all day text messaging each other. And he thought that he could tell that he liked me more because he actually spelt the word 'YOU' and I just put the letter 'U'.

-- Kelly Osbourne (English Actress)

Someone who does an act. In a democratic society, you're supposed to be an activist; that is, you participate. It could be a letter written to an editor.

-- Studs Terkel (American Journalist)

Anyone nit-picking enough to write a letter of correction to an editor doubtless deserves the error that provoked it.

-- Alvin Toffler (American Author)

I couldn't believe when I first got a fan letter from Al Pacino, it was unreal.

-- Christopher Plummer (Canadian Actor)

You don't carry in your countenance a letter of recommendation.

-- Charles Dickens (English Novelist)

Without such a Life, the Word as to the letter is dead.

-- Emanuel Swedenborg (Swedish Scientist)

A Train was born without any effort - if was like writing a letter to a friend.

-- Billy Strayhorn (American Composer)

No one in the whole movie ever asks anyone, Did you write this letter' Part of the reason is that no one wants to hear that it isn't for them. As soon as they read it, they want it to be theirs.

-- Kate Capshaw (American Actress)

In business a reputation for keeping absolutely to the letter and spirit of an agreement, even when it is unfavorable, is the most precious of assets, although it is not entered in the balance sheet.

-- Lord Chandos ( -)

As soon as I began, it seemed impossible to write fast enough - I wrote faster than I would write a letter - two thousand to three thousand words in a morning, and I cannot help it.

-- Helen Hunt Jackson (American Writer)


Try our:
Scrabble Word Finder

Scrabble Cheat

Words With Friends Cheat

Hanging With Friends Cheat

Scramble With Friends Cheat

Ruzzle Cheat



Related Resources:
metaphor