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letter Idioms & Phrases


A power, letter, or warrant, of attorney

  • a written authority from one person empowering another to transact business for him.
Webster 1913

air letter

  • noun a letter sent by air mail
    air letter; aerogram; aerogramme.
WordNet

airmail letter

  • noun a letter sent by air mail
    air letter; aerogram; aerogramme.
WordNet

black letter

  • noun a heavy typeface in use from 15th to 18th centuries
    Gothic.
WordNet
Black" let`ter
Definitions
  1. The old English or Gothic letter, in which the Early English manuscripts were written, and the first English books were printed. It was conspicuous for its blackness. See Type.
Webster 1913

black-letter

Black"-let`ter adjective
Definitions
  1. Written or printed in black letter; as, a black-letter manuscript or book.
  2. Given to the study of books in black letter; that is, of old books; out of date.
    Kemble, a black-letter man! J. Boaden.
  3. Of or pertaining to the days in the calendar not marked with red letters as saints' days. Hence: Unlucky; inauspicious.
Webster 1913

block letter

  • noun a plain hand-drawn letter
    block capital.
WordNet

Bullantic letters

  • Gothic letters used in papal bulls.
Webster 1913

business letter

  • noun a letter dealing with business
WordNet

Canine letter

  • the letter r. See R.
Webster 1913

Canonical letters

  • letters of several kinds, formerly given by a dishop to traveling clergymam or laymen, to show that they were entitled to receive the cammunion, and to distinguish them from heretics.
Webster 1913

Capital letter

  • noun one of the large alphabetic characters used as the first letter in writing or printing proper names and sometimes for emphasis; capitals were kept in the upper half of the type case and so became known as upper-case letters"
    uppercase; capital letter; majuscule; capital.
    • printers once kept the type for capitals and for small letters in separate cases
WordNet
  • F, lettre capitale (Print.), a leading or heading letter, used at the beginning of a sentence and as the first letter of certain words, distinguished, for the most part, both by different form and larger size, from the small (lower-case) letters, which form the greater part of common print or writing.
Webster 1913

chain letter

  • noun a letter that is sent successively to several people
WordNet

Circular note or letter

  • . (a) (Com.) See under Credit. (b) (Diplomacy) A letter addressed in identical terms to a number of persons.
Webster 1913

commercial letter of credit

  • noun a letter of credit given to a business concern for commercial purposes
WordNet

cover letter

  • noun a letter sent along with other documents to provide additional information
    cover letter.
WordNet

covering letter

  • noun a letter sent along with other documents to provide additional information
    cover letter.
WordNet

crank letter

  • noun a hostile (usually anonymous) letter
WordNet

Dead letter

  • noun the state of something that has outlived its relevance
    non-issue.
  • noun mail that can neither be delivered nor returned
    dead mail.
WordNet
  • . (a) A letter which, after lying for a certain fixed time uncalled for at the post office to which it was directed, is then sent to the general post office to be opened. (b) That which has lost its force or authority; as, the law has become a dead letter.
Webster 1913

Dead letter, Drop letter

  • etc. See under Dead, Drop, etc.
Webster 1913

Dead-letter office

  • a department of the general post office where dead letters are examined and disposed of.
Webster 1913

doctor of humane letters

  • noun an honorary degree in letters
WordNet

Dominical letter

  • the letter which, in almanacs, denotes Sunday, or the Lord's day (dies Domini). The first seven letters of the alphabet are used for this purpose, the same letter standing for Sunday during a whole year (except in leap year, when the letter is changed at the end of February). After twenty-eight years the same letters return in the same order. The dominical letters go backwards one day every common year, and two every leap year; e. g., if the dominical letter of a common year be G, F will be the dominical letter for the next year. Called also Sunday letter. Cf. Solar cycle, under Cycle, n.
Webster 1913

Double letter

  • . (a) (Print.) Two letters on one shank; a ligature . (b) A mail requiring double postage.
Webster 1913

Drop letter

  • a letter to be delivered from the same office where posted.
Webster 1913

encyclical letter

  • noun a letter from the pope sent to all Roman Catholic bishops throughout the world
    encyclical.
WordNet

Excrescent letter

  • (Philol.), a letter which has been added to a root; as, the d in alder (AS. alr) is an excrescent letter.
Webster 1913

Extended letter

  • (Typog.), a letter, or style of type, having a broader face than is usual for a letter or type of the same height.
Webster 1913

fan letter

  • noun a letter that is a piece of fan mail
WordNet

form letter

  • noun a letter that is printed in multiple copies and mailed to a list of recipients
WordNet

four-letter anglo-saxon word

  • noun any of several short English words (often having 4 letters) generally regarded as obscene or offensive
    four-letter Anglo-Saxon word.
WordNet

four-letter word

  • noun any of several short English words (often having 4 letters) generally regarded as obscene or offensive
    four-letter Anglo-Saxon word.
WordNet

Inferior letter, Inferior figure

  • (Print.), a small letter or figure standing at the bottom of the line (opposed to superior letter or figure), as in A2, Bn, 2 and n are inferior characters.
Webster 1913

investment letter

  • noun a letter of intent saying that a letter security is being bought for investment and not for resale; avoids need for SEC registration
WordNet

letter bomb

  • noun a thin explosive device inside an envelope or package and detonated when opened
    parcel bomb; package bomb.
  • verb send an explosive to
    • The Unabomber letter bombed a number of individuals and institutions
WordNet

letter bond

  • noun a bond that has not been registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission and cannot be sold to the general public
WordNet

Letter book

  • a book in which copies of letters are kept.
Webster 1913

Letter box

  • noun a numbered compartment in a post office where mail is put to be called for
    Post-Office box; POB; call box; PO Box.
  • noun public box for deposit of mail
    postbox; mailbox.
  • noun a private box for delivery of mail
    mailbox.
WordNet
  • a box for the reception of letters to be mailed or delivered.
Webster 1913

Letter carrier

  • noun a man who delivers the mail
    mail carrier; mailman; postman; carrier.
WordNet
  • 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.
Webster 1913

letter case

  • noun case for carrying letters
WordNet

Letter cutter

  • one who engraves letters or letter punches.
Webster 1913

Letter lock

  • a lock that can not be opened when fastened, unless certain movable lettered rings or disks forming a part of in are in such a position (indicated by a particular combination of the letters) as to permit the bolt to be withdrawn.
Webster 1913

Letter of attorney, Letter of credit

  • etc. See under Attorney, Credit, etc.
Webster 1913

letter of credit

  • noun a document issued by a bank that guarantees the payment of a customer's draft; substitutes the bank's credit for the customer's credit
WordNet

letter of intent

  • noun any letter expressing an intention to take (or forgo) some action
WordNet

letter of jeremiah

  • noun an Apocryphal book consisting of a letter ascribed to Jeremiah to the Jews in exile in Babylon warning them against idolatry
    Epistle of Jeremiah.
WordNet

Letter of license

  • a paper by which creditors extend a debtor's time for paying his debts.
Webster 1913

letter of mark and reprisal

  • noun a license to a private citizen to seize property of another nation
    letter of mark and reprisal; letter of marque.
WordNet

letter of marque

  • noun a license to a private citizen to seize property of another nation
    letter of mark and reprisal; letter of marque.
WordNet

letter of the alphabet

  • noun the conventional characters of the alphabet used to represent speech
    alphabetic character; letter.
    • his grandmother taught him his letters
WordNet

letter opener

  • noun dull knife used to cut open the envelopes in which letters are mailed or to slit uncut pages of books
    paperknife; paper knife.
WordNet

Letter paper

  • noun writing paper for use in writing correspondence
  • noun paper cut to an appropriate size for writing letters; usually with matching envelopes
    stationery.
WordNet
  • paper for writing letters on; especially, a size of paper intermediate between note paper and foolscap. See Paper.
Webster 1913

Letter punch

  • a steel punch with a letter engraved on the end, used in making the matrices for type.
Webster 1913

letter security

  • noun a stock or bond that is not registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission and cannot be sold in the public market
WordNet

letter stock

  • noun stock that has not been registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission and cannot be sold to the general public
WordNet

letter telegram

  • noun a cheaper form of telegram that is sent abroad for delivery the next day
WordNet

Letter writer

  • noun someone who communicates by means of letters
    correspondent.
WordNet
  • . (a) One who writes letters. (b) A machine for copying letters . (c) A book giving directions and forms for the writing of letters.
Webster 1913

letter-perfect

  • adjective satellite correct to the last detail; especially being in or following the exact words
    word-perfect.
    • a letter-perfect rendition of the soliloquy
    • she was word-perfect in her part
WordNet

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.
Webster 1913

Letters close ∨ 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.
Webster 1913

Letters of administration

  • noun legal document naming someone to administer an estate when no executor has been named
WordNet
  • (Law), the instrument by which an administrator or administratrix is authorized to administer the goods and estate of a deceased person.
Webster 1913

letters of marque

  • noun a license to a private citizen to seize property of another nation
    letter of mark and reprisal; letter of marque.
WordNet

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.
Webster 1913

letters patent

  • noun an official document granting a right or privilege
    patent.
WordNet

Letters patent, overt, ∨ 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.
Webster 1913

Letters testamentary

  • noun a legal document from a probate court or court officer informing you of your appointment as executor of a will and empowering you to discharge those responsibilities
WordNet
  • (Law), an instrument granted by the proper officer to an executor after probate of a will, authorizing him to act as executor.
Webster 1913

Love letter

  • noun a personal letter to a loved one expressing affection
    billet doux.
WordNet
  • a letter of courtship. Shak.
Webster 1913

lower-case letter

  • noun the characters that were once kept in bottom half of a compositor's type case
    minuscule; lowercase; lower-case letter.
WordNet

man of letters

  • noun a man devoted to literary or scholarly activities
WordNet

market letter

  • noun a newsletter written by an analyst of the stock market and sold to subscribers
WordNet

Movable letter

  • (Heb. Gram.), a letter that is pronounced, as opposed to one that is quiescent.
Webster 1913

news-letter

News"-let`ter noun
Definitions
  1. A circular letter, written or printed for the purpose of disseminating news. This was the name given to the earliest English newspapers.
Webster 1913

night letter

  • noun a cheaper form of telegram sent for delivery the next day
WordNet

Nundinal letter

  • among the Romans, one of the first eight letters of the alphabet, which were repeated successively from the first to the last day of the year. One of these always expressed the market day, which returned every nine days (every eight days by our reckoning).
Webster 1913

open letter

  • noun a letter of protest; addressed to one person but intended for the general public
WordNet

Paragogic letters

  • in the Semitic languages, letters which are added to the ordinary forms of words, to express additional emphasis, or some change in the sense.
Webster 1913

personal letter

  • noun a letter dealing with personal affairs
WordNet

polyphonic letter

  • noun a letter that has two or more pronunciations
    polyphone.
    • `c' is a polyphone because it is pronounced like `k' in `car' but like `s' in `cell'
WordNet

Pythagorean letter

  • . See Y.
Webster 1913

red-letter

  • adjective satellite memorable for being a special occasion
    • on red-letter nights a large gathering greeted the celebrity
WordNet
Red"-let`ter adjective
Definitions
  1. Of or pertaining to a red letter; marked by red letters.
Webster 1913

Red-letter day

  • noun a memorably happy or noteworthy day (from the custom of marking holy days in red on church calendars)
WordNet
  • a day that is fortunate or auspicious; so called in allusion to the custom of marking holy days, or saints' days, in the old calendars with red letters.
Webster 1913

Registered letter

  • a letter, the address of which is, on payment of a special fee, registered in the post office and the transmission and delivery of which are attended to with particular care.
Webster 1913

Republic of letters

  • The collective body of literary or learned men.
Webster 1913

roman letters

  • noun a typeface used in ancient Roman inscriptions
    roman type; roman print; roman.
WordNet

runic letter

  • noun any character from an ancient Germanic alphabet used in Scandinavia from the 3rd century to the Middle Ages
    rune.
    • each rune had its own magical significance
WordNet

scarlet letter

  • noun the letter A in red; Puritans required adulterers to wear it
WordNet

sea letter

Sea" let"ter
Definitions
  1. (Mar. Law.) The customary certificate of national character which neutral merchant vessels are bound to carry in time of war; a passport for a vessel and cargo.
Webster 1913

Ship letter

  • a letter conveyed by a ship not a mail packet.
Webster 1913

short letter

  • noun a short personal letter
    note; line; billet.
    • drop me a line when you get there
WordNet

Small capital letters

  • have the form of capital letters and height of the body of the lower-case letters.
Webster 1913

Small letter

  • noun the characters that were once kept in bottom half of a compositor's type case
    minuscule; lowercase; lower-case letter.
WordNet
  • . (Print.), a lower-case letter. See Lower-case, and Capital letter, under Capital, a.
Webster 1913

Sunday letter

  • . See Dominical letter, under Dominical.
Webster 1913

Superior figure, Superior letter

  • (Print.), a figure or letter printed above the line, as a reference to a note or an index of a power, etc; as, in x2 + yn, 2 is a superior figure, n a superior letter Cf. Inferior figure, under Inferior. = superscripted number, letter
Webster 1913

Text letter

  • a large or capital letter. Obs.
Webster 1913

Threatening letters

  • (Law), letters containing threats, especially those designed to extort money, or to obtain other property, by menaces; blackmailing letters.
Webster 1913

to the letter

  • adverb in every detail
    to a T; just right; to perfection.
    • the new house suited them to a T
WordNet

traveler's letter of credit

  • noun a letter of credit given to a traveler
    traveler's letter of credit.
WordNet

traveller's letter of credit

  • noun a letter of credit given to a traveler
    traveler's letter of credit.
WordNet

upper-case letter

  • noun one of the large alphabetic characters used as the first letter in writing or printing proper names and sometimes for emphasis; capitals were kept in the upper half of the type case and so became known as upper-case letters"
    uppercase; capital letter; majuscule; capital.
    • printers once kept the type for capitals and for small letters in separate cases
WordNet

varsity letter

  • noun an award earned by participation in a school sport
    letter.
    • he won letters in three sports
WordNet