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letter
Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English
letter
I.noun
COLLOCATIONS FROM OTHER ENTRIES
a correspondence/letters column (=that prints some of the letters a newspaper receives)
▪ Thousands of letters poured in to the correspondence column.
a letter bomb (also a parcel bomb British English) (= sent in a letter or parcel)
▪ A second letter bomb was found among the unopened mail.
a letter of apology
▪ We agreed to write a letter of apology.
a letter of application
▪ The purpose of your letter of application is to get an interview.
a letter of complaint
▪ I wrote a letter of complaint to the hospital manager.
a letter of resignation
▪ He immediately wrote a letter of resignation.
a love letter
▪ She found a love letter from another woman in his wallet.
a message/letter of sympathy
▪ We are grateful for all the messages of sympathy we have received.
anonymous phone call/letter etc (=one that is often unpleasant or contains threats)
begging letter (=a letter asking for money)
▪ a begging letter
block letters
call letters
chain letter
compromising letter/photograph/picture etc
cover letter
covering letter
▪ Send your CV and a covering letter to the address below.
dead letter
form letter
French letter
letter bomb
letter of acceptance (=a letter in which you agree to accept a job, university place etc)
▪ He wrote a letter of acceptance to the university.
letter of condolence
▪ a letter of condolence
letter of credit
love letter
man of letters
open letter
owe sb a drink/letter etc
▪ I owe Shaun a letter; I must write soon.
poison-pen letter
post...letter
▪ She’s just gone to post a letter.
wrote...letters
▪ I wrote her several letters, but she didn’t reply.
COLLOCATIONS FROM CORPUS
■ ADJECTIVE
anonymous
▪ Probably a group of students who amuse themselves by writing anonymous letters to the papers.
▪ That's the best cure for people who write anonymous letters.
▪ An anonymous letter, and, when that didn't work, Jem and Eric doing her flat over.
▪ She had an anonymous letter last night, and tried to burn it before I could see it.
▪ We do not publish anonymous letters, although we may withhold a writer's identify if it is justified.
▪ They had found the man who had written the anonymous letter.
▪ Starting in the summer of 1989, several gendarmes publicized their grievances in anonymous letters to the press.
capital
▪ She labelled them neatly, writing the addresses in ball point pen and capital letters.
▪ Some one wrote in all capital letters that unqualified disabled workers were slacking off and getting special privileges.
▪ The teacher had helped them with the capital letter to begin the sentence and the full stop at the end.
▪ Physicians Resource said it will use proceeds for acquisitions, working capital, capital expenditures and letters of credit.
▪ Sequences in capital letters are exons, while lower case letters indicate intron sequences.
▪ A text for students devoted seven pages to the use of a capital letter to indicate a proper noun.
▪ Baseline the line on which the bases of capital letters sit.
▪ Another thing Nisodemus was good at was giving words capital letters.
■ NOUN
bomb
▪ Hunt alert: Huntsmen in Northern Ireland have been alerted by police after letter bombs were sent to two hunt members.
▪ Two letter bombs, in 1961 and 1980, cost Brunner the use of an eye and the fingers of one hand.
▪ He says the letter bombs could have injured any of the people who handled them on their way to their targets.
▪ In a search of the offices, police found a second letter bomb among the unopened mail.
▪ At least two people were injured by the letter bombs.
▪ The letter bombs were described as more sophisticated and more powerful than the ones mailed from Istanbul.
box
▪ In another, children put a lighted firework through the letter box of a house.
▪ All of it divvied up, who you talked to, where you walked, which letter box you posted your mail.
▪ Frankie was a nice little thing actually, when there were no screams coming from that amazing letter box mouth.
▪ I shudder to think what I should do when her next social invitation arrives in the letter box!
▪ I glued up the cat flap. 1 sprayed the letter box with insect repellent.
▪ He was pressed against the wood face, his hips hard on to the letter box, and he cursed the slow reaction.
▪ Get a special cover for the letter box.
▪ When she got home she found an assignment pushed through her letter box.
love
▪ In the glove compartment of his car was another love letter, this time written by her husband.
▪ She read her love letters alone in the woods.
▪ You wrote him all those love letters, and then I suppose you got tired of it, and stopped!
▪ I must have been about fifteen when I received my first love letter.
▪ Leonardo forges a love letter from Emilia, and bribes a servant to deliver it to Eustathius along with Emilia's stolen glove.
▪ I read his crowded arms and think of tattooed gravestones - love letters lost in all the long grass.
▪ It was a love letter, it was what she wanted and would she have the nerve to deliver it?
▪ The bundles of love letters testify to that.
■ VERB
post
▪ He sadly posted this letter on a wet Sunday afternoon in Leeds.
▪ I sleep easily, rising before ten the following morning, to post my letter.
▪ Roseau, the capital, had primitive street lighting, no smart shops, and nowhere to post a letter.
▪ That between the Wars you could post a letter on a tram?
▪ I had an engagement in town that morning so I didn't post the letter.
▪ Picture yourself posting the letter, and feeling that it was a simple matter after all!
▪ This afternoon I wanted to ask Caliban to post a letter to G.P. from me.
▪ Detectives found envelopes identical to those used to post the letters.
read
▪ You see, on the day you read this letter another 14,000 infant lives will be lost.
▪ A young woman wearing glasses with thick lenses sat on a huge sack, reading a letter.
▪ He was reading once again a letter he had received three days ago.
▪ You could write happily in that window, or draw, or read a letter.
▪ Is he oppressed by the same obscure shame that I felt when I read the letter?
▪ As I read the letter inside, a little shiver of panic shot through me.
▪ I felt very proud of her and read her the letter.
▪ I had the jury read the now-infamous letter of the chairman of the board, Dean McGee.
receive
▪ The Northern has received telephone calls and letters from people who have contributed and want to know what is happening.
▪ Instead, you will receive another letter.
▪ But within a week, Norman received a letter from the council.
▪ She later received a form letter advising her that she had been selected for this position.
▪ If you leave as soon as you receive this letter, you should be back home before midnight.
▪ At the end of the play, Derikson receives a letter from Frederica, whom he had thought dead, begging forgiveness.
▪ Just before Easter, I received a letter about a series of television advertisements.
send
▪ Patients who've complained about the long wait have been sent letters of apology.
▪ Horgan said she had just sent out temporary layoff letters to three of her 40 employees.
▪ Doctors have been sent a letter by Sandoz pointing out that 4 people have suffered liver failure after taking Lamisil.
▪ If he refused to send a letter, he would have to explain himself to Krauss.
▪ Mr Fordy said all local hauliers were sent letters before the restriction came into being.
▪ She did not send her letter.
▪ Do not fail, Mr Browning had said, to send on any letters from Somerset with all speed.
sign
▪ Aerospatiale has signed a letter of intent to buy which will be implemented, one way or another, on January 15.
▪ What kind of justice do we have in this country when a signed and dated letter offering a job means nothing?
▪ Within six weeks, it was Ford who conceded, after seventy-six senators signed a letter demanding that he back off.
▪ By signing this letter, you confirm that this is the case.
▪ Prospects may begin signing letters of intent Wednesday.
▪ They announced yesterday that they have signed a letter of intent to merge under the name Comarco International Inc.
write
▪ After two hours, he went back to the Treasury and wrote his resignation letter.
▪ She sent her packages for Christmas, Easter and birthdays, and wrote her regular letters.
▪ He had written her several letters, and had had two prim replies.
▪ Lychner also wrote letters to the Texas Board of Pardons and Paroles when a criminal was due to be released.
▪ Who knows, in 40 years time some present five-year-old may be writing a similar letter!
▪ They held press conferences and wrote letters to the editor.
▪ But Cleo wrote letters though it wasn't humanly possible that she should.
▪ To want to write letters in strange-colored inks on unusual paper.
PHRASES FROM OTHER ENTRIES
be besieged with letters/demands/requests etc
compose a letter/poem/speech etc
▪ His movements were slow, his gaze abstracted, as if he were composing a poem in his head.
▪ Me and my sore back composed a letter to Martina.
▪ Presumably Mira is composing a poem, counting the syllables as she walks.
▪ She began to compose a letter in her head, then rejected the idea.
▪ The trainee is expected to compose a letter and a memo from short notes provided.
▪ Then he turned over the piece of paper and composed a letter to his wife, Olga.
crank call/letter
▪ Anyone who dares defend this breakthrough speaks in hushed tones, fearing crank calls and canceled grants.
stinging attack/report/letter etc
▪ Mr Smith launched a stinging attack on John Major, ridiculing him as a man who has lost control of events.
▪ The company which used to give £40,000 a year to Tory funds, launched a stinging attack on Government policies.
▪ What upsets her much more than the two columns is a stinging letter to the editor published in the sports pages.
stinking letter
thank-you letter/note/card
EXAMPLES FROM OTHER ENTRIES
▪ David, who won first prize in the lottery, has received more than 100 letters from charities asking for money.
▪ Hamlin wrote a letter to the council, complaining about the incident.
▪ I got a letter from Anna today.
▪ In a letter dated May 10th, the US government protested about the use of force in the republics.
▪ Write me a letter and tell me all your news!
EXAMPLES FROM CORPUS
▪ Blackwell said in a letter last week sent to the Union-Tribune.
▪ By his second year, he said, nearly 30 schools were sending him letters.
▪ Impassioned letters to Onegin: 1.
▪ Two other letters of Anselm during Osbern's disciplinary exile at Bec complete the story of their first meeting.
▪ When Shevardnadze produced the letter and handed it to the President, Reagan placed it unopened on the table beside his chair.
▪ Which is the one that has been informed of the letter?
II.verb
PHRASES FROM OTHER ENTRIES
crank call/letter
▪ Anyone who dares defend this breakthrough speaks in hushed tones, fearing crank calls and canceled grants.
stinging attack/report/letter etc
▪ Mr Smith launched a stinging attack on John Major, ridiculing him as a man who has lost control of events.
▪ The company which used to give £40,000 a year to Tory funds, launched a stinging attack on Government policies.
▪ What upsets her much more than the two columns is a stinging letter to the editor published in the sports pages.
stinking letter
thank-you letter/note/card
EXAMPLES FROM OTHER ENTRIES
▪ He makes signs and letters business vans.
EXAMPLES FROM CORPUS
▪ Alexander played piano, lettered in basketball and tennis and excelled as a student leader.
▪ LaRue, a 3. 3 engineering student, has also lettered in football and baseball.
The Collaborative International Dictionary
letter

Attorney \At*tor"ney\, n.; pl. Attorneys. [OE. aturneye, OF. atorn['e], p. p. of atorner: cf. LL. atturnatus, attornatus, fr. attornare. See Attorn.]

  1. A substitute; a proxy; an agent. [Obs.]

    And will have no attorney but myself.
    --Shak.

  2. (Law)

    1. One who is legally appointed by another to transact any business for him; an attorney in fact.

    2. A legal agent qualified to act for suitors and defendants in legal proceedings; an attorney at law.

      Note: An attorney is either public or private. A private attorney, or an attorney in fact, is a person appointed by another, by a letter or power of attorney, to transact any business for him out of court; but in a more extended sense, this class includes any agent employed in any business, or to do any act in pais, for another. A public attorney, or attorney at law, is a practitioner in a court of law, legally qualified to prosecute and defend actions in such court, on the retainer of clients.
      --Bouvier. -- The attorney at law answers to the procurator of the civilians, to the solicitor in chancery, and to the proctor in the ecclesiastical and admiralty courts, and all of these are comprehended under the more general term lawyer. In Great Britain and in some states of the United States, attorneys are distinguished from counselors in that the business of the former is to carry on the practical and formal parts of the suit. In many states of the United States however, no such distinction exists. In England, since 1873, attorneys at law are by statute called solicitors.

      A power, letter, or warrant, of attorney, a written authority from one person empowering another to transact business for him.

Douglas Harper's Etymology Dictionary
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" (compare German Buchstabe "letter, character," from Old High German buohstab, from Proto-Germanic *bok-staba-m).\n

\nLatin littera also meant "a writing, document, record," and in \nplural 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.

letter

"to write in letters," 1660s, from letter (n.1). Earlier it meant "to instruct" (mid-15c.). Related: Lettered; lettering.

letter

"one who lets" in any sense, c.1400, agent noun from let (v.).

Wiktionary
letter

Etymology 1 n. 1 A symbol in an alphabet. 2 A written or printed communication, generally longer and more formal than a note. vb. 1 (context transitive English) to print, inscribe, or paint letters on something. 2 (context intransitive US scholastic English) To earn a varsity letter (award). Etymology 2

n. 1 One who lets, or let out. 2 (context archaic English) One who retards or hinders.

WordNet
letter
  1. n. a written message addressed to a person or organization; "mailed an indignant letter to the editor" [syn: missive]

  2. the conventional characters of the alphabet used to represent speech; "his grandmother taught him his letters" [syn: letter of the alphabet, alphabetic character]

  3. a strictly literal interpretation (as distinct from the intention); "he followed instructions to the letter"; "he obeyed the letter of the law"

  4. an award earned by participation in a school sport; "he won letters in three sports" [syn: varsity letter]

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

letter
  1. v. win an athletic letter

  2. set down or print with letters

  3. mark letters on or mark with letters

Wikipedia
Letter (message)

A letter is a written message from one party to another containing information. Letters promote the preservation of communication between both parties; they may bring friends or relatives closer together, enrich professional relationships and provide a means of self-expression. Letters contribute to the protection and conservation of literacy. Letters have been sent since antiquity and are mentioned in the Iliad. Works by both Herodotus and Thucydides also mention letters.

Letter

Letter, letters, or literature may refer to:

Letter (paper size)

Letter or US Letter is a paper size commonly used as home or office stationery in Canada, the United States, and Mexico. It measures . US Letter size paper is a standard defined by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI), in contrast to the A4 paper used by other nations, which is defined by the International Organization for Standardization (specifically, in ISO 216).

Ronald Reagan made this the paper size for U.S. federal forms in the early 1980s; previously, the smaller "official" Government letter size, , was used.

In the U.S., paper density is usually measured in "pounds per ream" (of 500 sheets). Typical letter paper has a basis weight of – the weight of 500 sheets (a ream) of paper at and at 50% humidity. One ream of 20-pound letter-sized paper weighs , and a single letter-sized sheet of 20-pound paper weighs , which is equivalent to 75.19  g/m. Some metric information is typically included on American ream packaging, 20 pound paper is also labeled as 75  g/m. The most common density of A4 paper is 80 g/m.

The precise origins of the dimensions of US letter size paper (8.5 × 11 in) are not known. The American Forest & Paper Association says that the standard US dimensions have their origin in the days of manual paper making, the 11" length of the standard paper being about a quarter of "the average maximum stretch of an experienced vatman's arms." The letter size falls within the range of the historical quarto size, which since pre modern times refers to page sizes of wide and high, and it is indeed almost exactly one quarter of the old Imperial (British) paper size known as Demy 4to (17½"×22½"), allowing ½" for trimming.

The related paper size known as half letter, statement, or organizer L is exactly one half of the US letter size (8.5 × 5.5 in).

Letter (alphabet)

A letter is a grapheme (written character) in an alphabetic system of writing, such as the Greek alphabet and its descendants. Letters also appear in abjads and abugidas (variants of alphabets in which vowel marking is secondary or absent). Letters broadly denote phonemes in the spoken form of the language, although there is rarely a consistent exact correspondence between letters and phonemes.

Written signs in other writing systems are best called syllabograms (which denote a syllable) or logograms (which denote a word or phrase).

Usage examples of "letter".

But time had worked its curative powers, and soon the letters were abrim with exciting events of this richest court in all the Middle Kingdoms, as well as with pride of new skills mastered.

McIntyre contends that Turnbull forged the letter and stole the securities, then fearing his guilt would become known, committed still another crime - that of suicide, he could have swallowed a dose of aconitine while at the police court.

Shebbeare, a public writer, who, in a series of printed letters to the people of England, had animadverted on the conduct of the ministry in the most acrimonious terms, stigmatized some great names with all the virulence of censure, and even assaulted the throne itself with oblique insinuation and ironical satire.

Bernard, and Return to Parma--A Letter from Hensiette--My Despair De La Haye Becomes Attached to Me--Unpleasant Adventure with an Actress and Its Consequences--I Turn a Thorough Bigot--Bavois--I Mystify a Bragging Officer.

These being considered, the house ordered the lords of the admiralty to produce the other memorials of the same kind which they had received, that they might be laid before the congress at Soissons: then they addressed his majesty for copies of all the letters and instructions which had been sent to admiral Hosier, and those who succeeded him in the command of the West-India squadron.

At first Mr Passant, the post-master, made some difficulties but at last he consented and to my surprise he handed me, in addition to a letter for my mother, one addressed to Bissett.

Meanwhile James addressed a letter to several lords who had been formerly members of his council, as well as to divers ladies of quality and distinction, intimating the pregnancy of his queen, and requiring them to attend as witnesses at the labour.

I dare say if those letters had ever reached their addressees, some of them would have been every bit as astonished as Lubov was and just about as likely to welcome their assignments.

This letter is for the Lord Adelantado also, that he may see how Amerigo Vespucci can be useful, and advise him about it.

Monsieur Tourrier showed the letter that he had received from his cousin, the adjoint at Arthenay.

On returning from the review, Kutuzov took the Austrian general into his private room and, calling his adjutant, asked for some papers relating to the condition of the troops on their arrival, and the letters that had come from the Archduke Ferdinand, who was in command of the advanced army.

June, 1896, great stress was laid on the fact of the difference in the admixture of inks found on letters contemporaneous with the date of the will, and it was asserted also that the ink with which the will was written was not in existence at the time it was alleged to have been made, June 14, 1873, and probably not earlier than ten years later.

Without depending on prayers or miracles, he boldly armed against the public enemy, and his pastoral letters admonished the Italians of their danger and their duty.

This letter, however, gives the adolescent power over a proud and otherwise inaccessible adult woman, whom both he and his father are in love with.

But you can depend on my word that you will not know it until you have written me a very long letter begging me very humbly to indicate the place where the divine letter of the adorable object of your vows has gone.